Strong Arrowfield team for 2020 Golden Slipper
Five Arrowfield-connected runners in Saturday’s 64th Golden Slipper G1 make up one of the strongest teams the Stud has ever fielded in the race...
Strong Arrowfield team for 2020 Golden Slipper
Five Arrowfield-connected runners in Saturday’s $3.5 million 64th ATC Golden Slipper G1 make up one of the strongest teams the Stud has ever looked forward to cheering home in the quintessential Australian 2YO contest.
The current favourite, Blue Diamond G1 winner Tagaloa (by Japan’s Horse of the Year and now leading sire Lord Kanaloa), will attempt to become the 8th Arrowfield graduate to win the race, after Estijaab (2018), Forensics (2007), Miss Finland (2006), Belle du Jour (2000), Catbird (1999), Flying Spur (1995) & Danzero (1994).
Redoute’s Choice, Not A Single Doubt & Snitzel send out a father-&-sons team of four contenders, all Group winners within their last two starts: Prague, King’s Legacy, Farnan & Away Game. Farnan and Tagaloa are currently Timeform’s top-rated Australian juveniles, both on a figure of 117.
Snitzel is part of another father-&-son combination represented in this year’s Slipper as the sire of Away Game and of Arrowfield Inglis Easter graduate, Group 1 winner and now promising young sire Wandjina who has Skyline S. G2 winner Mamaragan in the field.
Snitzel’s sadly deceased half-brother Hinchinbrook has Mildred lining up from his penultimate crop, while Hinchinbrook’s sire Fastnet Rock is represented by his 17th & 18th Slipper runners, the filly Personal and the colt Rathlin, who makes the field after Global Quest’s scratching.
After Thursday’s withdrawal of Cellsabeel, Exceed and Excel (sire of the 2013 quinella and runners-up Microphone & Earthquake from 17 past runners) will be represented by Shadwell Stud’s home-bred filly Minhaaj.
(The remaining two emergency runners, Time Is Precious & Philizzy are both by Snitzel).
On representation and results, only Arrowfield’s pair of three-time Champion Sires match the records of Exceed and Excel and More Than Ready (without a 2020 runner) over the past 15 years.
Redoute’s Choice’s 16 runners in that period include the Arrowfield-bred-&-owned 2006 winner Miss Finland, and the 2005 quinella, Stratum & another Arrowfield graduate, Fashions Afield.
Snitzel, one of a remarkable six contenders by Redoute’s Choice in that 2005 Slipper, has had 18 runners in the past decade. In that period, he’s filled the first four placings with Estijaab (1st, 2018), Snitzerland (2nd to Pierro in 2012), Sweet Idea (3rd to Overreach & Sidestep in 2013) and Menari (4th, the first colt home behind She Will Reign, Frolic & Tulip in 2017).
Like Inglis Easter filly Estijaab, Snitzerland (from Inglis Melbourne Premier) and Sweet Idea (from Magic Millions Gold Coast) were both Arrowfield sale graduates.
She was a queen from the day she was born with a lightning turn of foot & a fighter’s heart. A $1.7m Arrowfield @inglis_sales Easter yearling, Estijaab’s Golden Slipper win was one that @HawkesRacing, @EmiratesPark & @brentonavdulla will never forget 🙌. pic.twitter.com/ZpNFxOIItL
— Arrowfield Stud (@ArrowfieldStud) March 12, 2020
Away Game aims to become the fourth horse, and first filly to complete the Magic Millions-Golden Slipper double after Capitalist (2016), Phelan Ready (2009) & Dance Hero (2004).
A second Golden Slipper victory would cap a tremendous year for Snitzel, already a two-time Champion Sire of 2YOs and leading that Premiership again this season with $2.8 million prizemoney and 14 juvenile winners.
Not A Single Doubt is yet to sire a Golden Slipper winner, but he does have two Blue Diamonds (won by Extreme Choice & Miracles Of Life), a Magic Millions 2YO Classic (by Karuta Queen) and 30 other juvenile stakes trophies in his pool room.
He has had one Golden Slipper starter every year since 2011 with Queensland’s Doubtfilly his best finisher so far – she was a gallant fourth in Pierro’s vintage 2012 edition.
Not A Single Doubt’s past runners are an impressive group – they include subsequent 3YO Group 1 winners Qafila, Extreme Choice & Single Gaze – but Farnan, the $5.50 second favourite, may be his best chance yet of adding Australia’s most desirable 2YO prize to his record.
In all, there have been 56 Arrowfield-connected starters in the Golden Slipper, 2005-19, producing four wins (Estijaab, Forensics, Miss Finland & Stratum), three seconds (Snitzerland, Charge Forward’s daughter Headway & Fashions Afield), two thirds (Sweet Idea & farm graduate Meurice) and two fourths (Menari & Doubtfilly).
Of course, numbers and history guarantee nothing in horse-racing, especially in such a competitive field of horses by a superlative group of stallions.
However, it will be no surprise if there’s an uproar at 898 Gundy Road in the Hunter Valley, and a flurry of activity on Arrowfield’s social media accounts soon after 4:30 pm on Saturday afternoon!
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