Lindsay Park trainer David Hayes is unsure if his emerging staying filly Sacred Eye will handle the wet conditions if the predicted rain arrives before the running of the Group 1 $1m Crown Oaks (2500m) at Flemington on Thursday.
While Hayes believes that Sacred Eye will develop into a handy stayer, he said the only way to find out if she can handle a rain affected track is to send her out on one.
“High Chap’s normally do and she’s a very good stayer,” Hayes told racing.com.
“I think we’ll be OK, but there’s only one way to find out.”
The High Chaparral filly burst into Crown Oaks contention with a dominant win over the colts and geldings in the Group 3 $500,000 Ladbrokes Caulfield Classic (2000m) at Caulfield on October 17.
While Sacred Eye was too strong for the boys at Caulfield, Hayes, who trains in partnership with is nephew Tom Dabernig, said that to win the Crown Oaks was not going to be an easy task.
“This is one of the better Oaks you’d see when you look at the fact her opposition have got form around the Derby winner,” Hayes said.
“It’s hard to be too confident, but I know she’s very good. I think she probably deserves to be favourite, but it’ll be interesting to see how she handles the conditions.”
Champion English jockey Ryan Moore takes the ride on Sacred Eye who has drawn barrier nine in the twelve horse Crown Oaks field.
The Ciaron Maher trained Jameka at $3.80 holds a slight advantage in the market order over Sacred Eye who is posted as the second favourite at $4 with Ladbrokes.com.au.
Jameka also laid claims for the Crown Oaks with a comfortable win over the colts and geldings in the Group 2 $200,000 Dilmah Exceptional Teas Vase (2040m) at Moonee Valley on October 24.
Also contesting for favouritism at $4,20 is the John O’Shea trained Ambience who also but in a terrific Crown Oaks trial with a crushing three and a half lengths win in the traditional Crown Oaks lead up in the Group 2 $300,000 Mumm Wakeful Stakes (2000m) at Flemington.
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Crown Oaks market order at Ladbrokes.com.au: $3.80 Jameka, $4 Sacred Eye, $4.20 Ambience, $9 Pasadena Girl, $13 Honesta, Dawnie Perfect, $15 Muzyka, $19 Dulverton, $26 Zarabeel, $67 The Grey Flash, $81 Ritzy, $91 Princess Aria.
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