A maiden winning the Golden Slipper is a rarity but the Coolmore Australia team rates Lake Geneva a chance to add her name to a select list in Saturday’s $3.5 million race.
In almost 60 editions of a race that shapes the Australian breeding industry, only Sweet Embrace (1967) and Fairy Walk (1971) have celebrated the first wins of their career in a Golden Slipper.
But Coolmore Australia’s Michael Kirwan has seen enough in Lake Geneva to declare she has the quality to become the third.
“She’s a very good filly. There’s no doubting her ability, it’s just like in all these races you need a bit of luck on the day,” Kirwan said.
“Luck in running and all these things have got to happen, but one horse has got to win and we’re hoping that she can acquit herself pretty well.”
Lake Geneva has Widden Stakes and Blue Diamond Stakes placings to her credit from awkward barriers and she has drawn much closer to the inside at Rosehill.
“(Co-trainer) Michael Hawkes mentioned that barriers have probably beaten her in both her starts so far,” Kirwan said.
“But we’ve got a (good) barrier on Saturday, she has worked well on Tuesday and all going according to plan she’ll be right there on Saturday.”
Lake Geneva, sold for $1 million by Coolmore as a yearling before the stud bought back into her before the Blue Diamond, is one of two Slipper starters for Hawkes Racing.
The stable, which also has Headwater in the race, is trying to win back-to-back Slippers.
The David Hayes and Tom Dabernig-trained Reemah finished ahead of Lake Geneva when second in the Blue Diamond is another maiden racing for a slice of Slipper history.
Hayes’s former star Miss Finland was second in the Blue Diamond before winning ijn 2006.
Kerrin McEvoy rode Reemah on debut in October and reunites with her on Saturday.
He took positives out of Reemah’s Blue Diamond run.
“She’s performed in a high-pressure race and showed she can handle big occasions,” McEvoy said.
Lake Geneva has the addition of winkers, the same gear change trainer John O’Shea has gone for with Furnaces who was beaten by Slipper favourite Vancouver in the Todman Stakes.
“If that can help him find that length or two on Vancouver then that brings him right into the race,” Godolphin racing manager Jason Walsh said.
Exosphere is the leading chance of Godolphin’s four runners on the second line of betting behind Vancouver.
Article from JustHorseRacing.com.au