Shamus getting ready for Cox Plate defence


Preparations for Shamus Award’s Sportingbet Cox Plate defence are underway with his autumn campaign aborted after last Saturday’s inglorious Rosehill Guineas effort.

The valuable three-year-old finished a distant second-last behind in the $500,000 Group 1 won by Criterion after enduring a torrid run in the first half of the 2000m event.

Despite the result, trainer Danny O’Brien said the son of Snitzel came through the race well and was putting a positive spin on the early end to his campaign.

“Obviously it wasn’t what we wanted, but Craig (Williams, jockey) didn’t punish him, he sat up on him the last furlong after what had happened in the run,” O’Brien said.

“He’ll have the opportunity to have a six-or-eight-week spell, which is two or three weeks more than you’d get if he kept going in Sydney. Hopefully that’ll be a bonus in the spring.”

Shamus Award didn’t feature in the finish as the final two runs of his campaign, also unplaced in the Australian Cup, but didn’t go without Group 1 victory in the autumn.

He became the first three-year-old to win the Australian Guineas after winning the Cox Plate when successful in the $500,000 event at Flemington.

Shamus Award will be looking to emulate a great of the Australian turf when he returns for this year’s Cox Plate with So You Think the only three-year-old Cox Plate winner to return and win Australia’s weight-for-age championship again at four.

Story by Brad Bishop, to view full Racing Victoria story click here

Photo by Bruno Cannatelli, to view Bruno's website click here 

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