Trainer Ciaron Maher has strugged off concerns over Loving Gaby’s wide draw for the Group One Golden Slipper on Saturday.
The Phoenix Thoroughbreds owned filly was allocated barrier 15, out of a maximum field of 16, for Australia’s Premier juvenile race but given her running style, her handler doesn’t see that an issue, telling Sky Thoroughbred Central.
“Loving Gaby is just a big raw filly that just needs a nice uninterrupted run, so I’m ok with where she’s drawn.”
Having won the Group Three Chairman’s Stakes on debut the daughter of I Am Invincible had anything but an “uninterrupted run” when putting in a brave effort to finish a running on sixth in the Blue Diamond Stakes on her last start. While frustrated at the time Maher is now philosophical about that effort.
“I think she could have been involved in the finish. It’s hard to tell but the way she finished off without actually getting a decent look at them (suggested she might have). It was probably half her fault as well she could have made a run for herself there but she’s only new, it was just her second start. I know from her work and what she’s shown us if she does get that uninterrupted run she’s pretty special.”
The two-year-old will be ridden by top international rider Oisin Murphy for the first time on Saturday, and he’s arranged to have a sit on her in some light work on Friday. That will be another step in a preparation that has been carefully planned for her to arrive at Rosehill Gardens in the best shape possible.
“It’s been a bit of time since the Blue Diamond,” explained Maher, “so we trailled last Thursday which brought her on, she also had a stride around this morning (Tuesday), and she had a puff there, but I liked the way she got through the wet this morning. James McDonald rode and gave her a good report.”
“I’m wrapped with the way their lined-up; its the richest two-year-old race in the world and the stable have done a great job in getting two horses with chances in it, and it’s an open race. It will be interesting to see how much rain we get how the track presents and where the best racing lanes are.”
The 2019 Golden Slipper is due to get underway at 4:30pm local time at Rosehill Gardens on Saturday and the full Sky Thoroughbred’s Central interview is below: