Pearls will step-up to 1600 metres for the first time when she runs in the 2015 Flight Stakes, but trainer John O’Shea does not believe that the extended trip will be an issue for the promising filly.
Pearls made her racing debut with a comfortable win in the Boral Timber Maiden Handicap (1200m) at Gosford on August 13 and she was far from disgraced when she finished second behind The Special Two in the Place Multi Handicap (1200m) at Canterbury on September 2 before she scored a maiden stakes victory in the Group 2 Tea Rose Stakes (1400m) at Royal Randwick on September 19.
O’Shea admits that Pearls got plenty of favours in the run in the Tea Rose Stakes, but he is happy with the physical condition of the Exceed And Excel filly and he believes she is one of only a few fillies in the Flight Stakes field that will run out a strong mile.
“It was a good run, but to be fair the race was handed to her on a platter,” O’Shea said.
“They rolled along, she was pulled to the right part of the track, she got a lovely cart into the race and there was bunch of action on the inside of track, but she did make the improvement.
“She hasn’t gone backwards and her work was beautiful on Tuesday.
“I am pretty sure she will be strong over a mile, while a couple of the others are a little bit doubtful.”
Pearls has been settled towards the tail of the field in all three of her race starts to date and O’Shea does not believe that jockey James McDonald will change his tactics in the Flight Stakes.
The Royal Randwick track is expected to favour run-on horses tomorrow and O’Shea is confident that Pearls will get every chance to win the Flight Stakes, if she is good enough.
“She gets that run three pairs back one off and Mac will be able to come to the centre of the track on her,” O’Shea said.
“She is a filly with her tail in the air and when fillies and mares get that bit of confidence they generally finish it off.
“Hopefully she does that on Saturday.”
Pearls is currently available at 2015 Flight Stakes odds of $7 with Ladbrokes and he is on the second line of betting behind dominant favourite Speak Fondly ($2.70 into $2.30).