Earthquake will jump from barrier three in the 2015 William Reid Stakes and trainer John O’Shea has confirmed that jockey Tommy Berry will press forward on the talented filly in the early stages of the race.
Earthquake has shown a degree of tactical versatility during her racing career to date and was settled just behind the leader I’m All The Talk when she finished tenth in the Group 1 Oakleigh Plate (1100m), but was ridden more conservatively in the Listed MSS Security Stakes (1100m) at Flemington on March 14.
O’Shea told Racing Ahead that Berry will have plenty of options when he partners Earthquake for the first time in the William Reid Stakes, but he revealed that he did not want the Exceed And Excel filly to be trapped on the fence coming around the bend.
“I will just leave that to Tommy,” O’Shea said.
“The option is there to roll forward and she will be right on the speed whatever happens.
“Ideally we wouldn’t want to roll to the rail, so if that means she has to lead rather than sit third on the fence or if she can stay one off and get the box seat that would be even better.”
O’Shea admitted after the Oakleigh Plate that he was slightly disappointed with the performance of Earthquake, but he was far happier with her effort in the MSS Security Stakes.
Earthquake is yet to prove that she is capable of mixing it with the best open age sprinters in Australia, but O’Shea believes that the William Reid Stakes is the right race for last year’s Blue Diamond Stakes winner.
“She ran well and it was probably a true indication of how we felt she has been going,” O’Shea said.
“She hasn’t been to the Valley in terms of racing there, but she has been there for trackwork a couple of times and she has given every indication that she will be effective around there.
“She looks to get a nice run and I think that it is a nice race for her.
“I don’t think that there is any doubting that she is capable in this grade.
“The form out of her two-year-old year is only moderate, but she raced well in the spring and she raced well the other day.”
Earthquake is currently available at 2015 William Reid Stakes odds of $7 and has been the best-backed runner in the race with Ladbrokes.