Earthquake is set to start the 2014 Golden Slipper as a clear favourite after maintaining her unbeaten record with a comfortable win in the 2014 Reisling Stakes at Rosehill Gardens this afternoon.
Jockey Kerrin McEvoy took Earthquake to the lead in the early stages of the race, while Mossfun took a seat off the Blue Diamond Stakes winner, and did not ask the daughter of Exceed And Excel for an extra effort until the 200 metre mark.
More Radiant and Alpha Miss looked as though they might challenge Earthquake in the final stages of the race, but Earthquake was far too strong and maintained her stranglehold on the Group 1 Golden Slipper (1200m) that will be run at Rosehill Gardens on April 5.
“That showed how good she is; fresh like that and too lead all the way and beat those good fit horses like she did shows what kind of talent she has got,” trainer Peter Snowden said after the race.
“We were going to take a sit, but the inside horses weren’t going to go quick enough and he thought that he would push on and make his own luck.
“You can do that on good horses and he knew what he had underneath her and she was good enough.”
Snowden knows what it takes to trainer the winner of the Golden Slipper, taking out the 2011 edition of the race with Sepoy, and he is confident that his star juvenile can maintain his stellar form and give Darley their second victory in the feature two-year-old event on the Australian racing calendar.
“Two weeks doesn’t seem like long time, but it is a long time for a two-year-old,” Snowden said.
“The thing about this filly is that she is really bombproof and a pleasure to have at the stable.
“She is no problem, she eats and there is no pressure on her at home.”
McEvoy was having his first ride in a race on Earthquake, after missing the Blue Diamond Stakes due to a knee injury, and clearly has a high opinion of the talented two-year-old; riding her in a similar manner to how Luke Nolen use to partner equine superstar Black Caviar.
The Darley stable jockey said that he had no reservations about taking Earthquake to the lead in the early stages of the race and believes that she will be very difficult to beat in the Golden Slipper in a weeks’ time.
“She is an athletic filly and a pleasure to ride,” McEvoy said.
“She really bounced and towed me forward and I had a bit of an open plan really and she had the class to tow me forward.
“She was too good for them.
“Barriers and luck in a Slipper can play a big part and we will have our fingers crossed.”
The victory of Earthquake capped off a strong day for Darley, who took out the Group 2 Todman Stakes (1200m) earlier in the meeting with outsider Ghibellines.