Trainer John O’Shea is hoping a pair of preparations tailor made around a Spring Champion Stakes tilt will help Lion’s Roar and Socrates defy the bookies doubts at Randwick on Saturday.
O’Shea is launching a two-pronged attack in the 2000m three-year-old feature and both horses are double digit odds to cause an upset on the big stage.
Lion’s Roar is favoured with TAB.com.au at $18 after opening at $26 when the final field was declared on Wednesday while Socrates is a $44 outsider.
“Lion’s Roar is an interesting horse because the bookies had him 7-2 to win the Gloaming Stakes before he went to Newcastle and won, now he opened up 25-1 here,” O’Shea said.
“He’s only lightly-raced but is racing well and I expect to run well again on Saturday.
“It is difficult to frame a market with so many different form lines but I can’t fault my horses.
“Socrates was outstanding at Kembla the other day and should be suited by the 2000m.”
Brenton Avdulla rides Lion’s Roar and Kerrin McEvoy is aboard Socrates.
Jockey Brenton Avdulla rides Lion’s Roar. Picture: AAP Image/Dan HimbrechtsSource:AAP
Unlike some of their rivals on Saturday, both Lion’s Roar and Socrates head into the Spring Champion with a one next to their name in the form book.
Lion’s Roar was only beaten 1-1/2 behind Caulfield Guineas contender Mo’unga first-up at Newcastle before putting back-to-back wins at Kembla Grange and Newcastle respectively while Socrates, a son of Tavistock, broke his maiden over 1600m at Kembla on September 26.
“Both of them have had their preparation built around running in this race,” O’Shea said.
“I would have loved to run them in town before now but the programming hasn’t suited them.
“They’ve had an excellent grounding at the provincials.
“Rain would definitely help both of their chances but they’ve been prepared for this.”
O’Shea also has chances with both the Group 2 Stan Fox Stakes and Group 3 Angst Stakes with promising colt Acrophobic contesting the first of those events.
O’Shea has him on a Bondi Stakes path but believes he can make an impact in his first stakes assignment with James McDonald on deck.
“He has had a good preparation for this race and is looking for that trip now,” O’Shea said.
“I suppose it will be an issue for some of them being the tyranny of distance now but he is one of the ones who will enjoy it.”
Rocha Clock (right) is in the Angst Stakes. Picture: AAP Image/Dan HimbrechtsSource:AAP
All Saints’ Eve headlines O’Shea’s Angst Stakes assault with Rocha Clock joining her stablemate in the fillies and mares 1600m event.
TAB.com.au have All Saints’ Eve as the $5.50 favourite for the $160,000 mile despite the in-form daughter of Sacred Falls horrible draw in barrier 15.
She has combined with James McDonald for back-to-back wins including the Group 3 Tibbie Stakes at Newcastle last start.
“She is a great little mare but Mac will have his work cut out for him from that gate although there looks to be a bit of speed there,” O’Shea said.
“Her best trip is the mile so she should run well.
“Rocha Clock is unbeaten second-up and I expect her to improve dramatically.”
Rocha Clock is $19 with Glen Boss booked.
Originally published asO’Shea duo could Spring a Group 1 surprise
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