Shamrocker looking good ahead of return


Dual Group 1 winner Shamrocker galloped impressively at Moonee Valley on Tuesday in preparation for her return to racing in the Memsie Stakes at Caulfield on Saturday week.

Ridden by race jockey Glen Boss, Shamrocker pleased trainer Danny O'Brien who said the four-year-old has been ready to return for a couple of weeks.

"She is a very good mare obviously and I don't think she's been going better than what she is going into the spring," O'Brien said.

"She's a very clean-winded filly. You don't need to race her much to have her very fit.

"She won the AJC Derby at her fourth run in the preparation.

"She'll go to the Memsie and then she'll either go second-up into the Dato (Tan Chin Nam Stakes) or the following week into the Underwood.

"Her third start will be the Caulfield (Yalumba) Stakes and following that run we'll decide whether she goes into the Cox Plate or the Caulfield Cup. She'll only run in either of them as her final run into what is her ultimate aim, the Melbourne Cup.

"She loves Flemington and everything we do with her this spring will be about trying to win the Melbourne Cup."

As a two-year-old, Shamrocker showed a liking for her home track of Flemington and won the Group 2 Sires' Produce Stakes (1400m) there and last season took out the Group 1 Australian Guineas (1600m) at the track.

"She's obviously a mare with a great record but I've never thought she'd be anywhere near her best until she turned four and possibly later being an O'Reilly," O'Brien said.

"She was a particularly backward filly early even though she's won all those races and she's got a lot of improvement in her still."

Shamrocker is equal second pick in the betting at $12 with Queensland Oaks winner Scarlett Lady in the Melbourne Cup with TAB Sportsbet behind $9 favourite Lights Of Heaven.

She is at $15 in the Caulfield Cup, in which Lights Of Heaven is $7.50 favourite, and at $21 in the Cox Plate behind $7 favourite Whobegotyou.

Story by AAP, to view story at Bigpond Sport click here

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

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