A new found confidence boost will help up and coming jockey Sam Clipperton in his quest to win Saturday’s Group 1 $3.5m Longines Golden Slipper (1200m) at Rosehill on Calliope.
Clipperton has picked up the ride on the John O’Shea filly, taking over from number one stable rider James McDonald who will be aboard the undefeated stablemate Astern.
Clipperton has been on cloud nine all week after collecting his first Group 1 trophy when he steered the Ron Quinton trained Peeping to victory in the Group 1 $600,000 Coolmore Classic (1500m) at Rosehill.
“It has been a few days now since I won on Peeping and it is starting to sink in,’’ Clipperton told The Daily Telegraph.
“I honestly haven’t stopped since that race, it has been such a busy few days, but the whole time have had a big smile on my face.’’
“In these big races, you can never count yourself out and I know I’m on the best filly in the race, she has done everything right and is a live chance.’’
Clipperton came through his apprenticeship under the guidance of Quinton and he is going back to the former champion jockey for advice leading up to the Golden Slipper on Saturday.
Quinton won four Golden Slippers on Marscay (1982), Sir Dapper (1983), Rory’s Jester (1985) and Marauding (1987) and no doubt will have plenty of handy hints to offer the young jockey.
Clipperton said that he would also seek out two time Golden Slipper winner Darren Beadman and Tommy Berry who has won two of the last three for trainer Gai Waterhouse on Overreach in 2013 and last year on Vancouver.
“I’ve got the right people to ask and I plan to have a good chat to Ron and Darren, and also Tommy because he won the Golden Slipper on Vancouver last year from barrier 16,’’ Clipperton said.
“At the end of the day, the Golden Slipper is a high pressure race and anything can happen. You can do all the planning in the world but when the gates open it comes down to those split-second decisions.’’
Calliope has drawn awkwardly at barrier fifteen, but will jump from fourteen if the emergency Moqueen, barrier four, doesn’t gain a start.
But the Exceed And Excel filly is a bit dicey at the barriers and the outside gate might be in her favour as she will be one of the last to get loaded and won’t have to wait too long before the starter presses the button.
“It is an awkward draw but this could be a blessing in disguise,’’ Clipperton said.
“She is a bit of a temperamental horse in the barriers so because we are drawn out wide we won’t be in there too long.”
O’Shea had to rearrange Calliope’s Golden Slipper program after she was a late scratching when she played up in the barriers before the running of the Group 2 $300,000 Reisling Stakes (1200m) at Randwick on March 5.
But the filly was on her best behaviour at Rosehill last Saturday when she won the Group 2 $175,000 Bede Murray Magic Night Stakes (1200m) and the stable is confident that she will back up this week in fine style.
Calliope is currently marked at $17 in Ladbrokes.com.au’s Golden Slipper market that has the Blue Diamond Stakes winner Extreme Choice as the $3.10 favourite ahead of his stablemate Flying Artie at $5.
Golden Slipper market order: $3.10 Extreme Choice, $5 Flying Artie, $9 Capitalist, $10 Kiss And Make Up, $11 Astern, $13 Good Standing, $17 Calliope, $21 Defcon, Scarlet Rain, $26 Telperion, $31 Yankee Rose, $41 Star Turn, Honesty Prevails, $101 French Fern, $151 Sweet Sherry, Moqueen, Quick Feet.