Flight Stakes winner First Seal got the go ahead to resume for her Spring Carnival campaign in the Group 2 $250,000 Warwick Stakes (1400m) at Randwick on August 22 following her Randwick barrier trial appearance today.
While First Seal finish fourth in a high quality 840m trial on the Kensington track to Golden Slipper winner Vancouver, both Blake Shinn and trainer John Thompson were pleased with the effort.
“She felt awesome,” Shinn said.
“She looks good and did exactly what I wanted her to do.”
Thompson will now program First Seal towards resuming in the weight for age Warwick Stakes in three weeks.
“The Warwick Stakes suits,” Thompson said.
“1400-metres around Warwick Farm under weight-for-age conditions will be perfect.”
First Seal was beaten just over two lengths but was under a tight hold from Shinn who gave the Fastnet Rock mare an easy run to the line after travelling wide for most of the trip.
“If I could have programmed how I wanted the trial to unfold, that would have been exactly how it went,” Thompson said.
Shinn looks like getting the nod for the plum Spring rides on First Seal after he was replaced by James McDonald at the end of Sydney Autumn Carnival.
Shinn was aboard First Seal when she won the Group 1 $400,000 Coolmore Flight Stakes (1600m) at Randwick during the 2014 Sydney Spring Carnival but was replaced by McDonald after running second on her to Plucky Belle in the Group 1 $600,000 Coolmore Classic (1500m) at Rosehill in the Autumn.
But McDonald couldn’t get the filly home in the Group 1 $400,000 Vinery Stud Stakes (2000m) at Rosehill when a narrow second to Fenway and then ran sixth to Amanpour in the Group 1 $1m Cellarbrations Queen Of The Turf Stakes (1600m) at Randwick on the second day of ‘The Championships’.
First Seal will head to Melbourne after the Warwick Stakes for the remainder of the Spring Carnival.
“Second up will probably be the Let’s Elope at Flemington and then onto the Sir Rupert Clarke and Toorak and probably Myer after that,” Thompson said.
First Seal will take on the mares in the Group 2 $200,000 Let’s Elope Stakes (1400m) at Flemington on September 12 and in the Group 1 $500,000 Myer Classic (1600m) at Flemington on October 31.
But will be up against all comers in the Group 1 $400,000 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on September 26 and in the Group 1 $400,000 David Jones NBCF Toorak Handicap (1600m) at Caulfield on October 10.