Gutsy filly has O'Brien eyeing spring riches


Flemington trainer Danny O'Brien has an eye set on Caulfield and Melbourne Cups after Shamrocker's super autumn campaign which culminated in her gutsy second placing in the AJC Oaks on Saturday at Randwick in horrendous conditions.

Shamrocker was sent out the $3.50 favourite based on her dazzling autumn form, which netted Group 1 wins in the Australian Guineas and the AJC Australian Derby, however she didn't handle the heavy track as well as winner Absolutely.

"It's been a tremendous campaign and I wouldn't swap my filly any others looking to the future," O'Brien said.

Although she tried hard, Shamrocker found it hard going in the final stages of the 2400-metre marathon on Saturday, but she did well enough to finish in the runners-up stall, which matched her second place in the VRC Oaks in the spring.

"She ran super," O'Brien said.

"Who knows with the wet track, but she certainly tried her hardest and the winner was just too strong.

"She outstayed them all but the winner and full credit to her. She pinched a gap and came up the fence and we couldn't pick her up."

The favourite's jockey Glen Boss said her class got her as far as it did in the wet.

"She gave me a winning ride but she just didn't handle the conditions," he said.

"I still thought she was going to get there but it was going to be a slog and the winner swam."

Shamrocker will now head out to the paddock on the back of a five run campaign, which netted connections $1.5 million on the back of two Group 1 wins and placings in the Group 1 Oaks and Rosehill Guineas, and will be aimed at the Spring Carnival feature staying events.

Photo by Mark Evans, which appeared on the Herald-Sun website.

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