Ambience’s Wakeful Stakes win has prompted a swift reaction from bookmakers with the Godolphin filly now second favourite for the VRC Oaks.
But trainer John O’Shea will not commit to the five-day back-up into the Classic at Flemington unless he is happy with her recovery from Saturday’s 2000m Group Two race.
Caulfield Classic winner Sacred Eye, who did not contest the Wakeful, heads the Oaks market at $3 with Ambience sharing the $4 line with Jameka.
After finishing third in the Ethereal Stakes won by Dawnie Perfect two weeks ago, Ambience was the $4.20 equal favourite with My Popette for the Wakeful.
From barrier three, Ambience took up a more forward position and found the rail which her trainer said was a big advantage.
“She had done extremely well after her last start so I came here optimistic she’d also do well today,” O’Shea said.
“She found the rail which helped went to the line well but we’ll wait 48 hours whether she runs in the Oaks.
“She relaxed which is a good sign if we are going to take her to 2500 metres.”
Ambience had 3-1/2 lengths to spare over Adelaide filly Beluga Blue ($15) with Muzyka ($10) another half length third just in front of Dawnie Perfect ($7.50).
O’Shea said the soft track also helped Ambience who like Muzyka and Dawnie Perfect has done most of her racing in NSW.
“The Sydney horses are a bit more used to getting their toe in the ground,” he said.
Beluga Blue will now go home to South Australia with trainer Leon Macdonald electing to bypass the Oaks with a view to the autumn while Muzyka and Dawnie Perfect are likely to take their places in the field.
Dawnie Perfect is a $7 chance with her jockey Jim Cassidy, who has announced he will retire after the Oaks, saying she didn’t handle the ground as well as he’s hoped.
Dwayne Dunn, who rode seventh-placed My Popette, said the Robert Smerdon-trained filly was uncomfortable in the going which he said was worse than a Soft 5.
“The track is worse than they have got it rated,” Dunn said.