Dual Group One winner Guelph is an odds-on favourite for Saturday’s Tea Rose Stakes but at least one rival trainer doesn’t rate her as the horse to beat.
John O’Shea will saddle up two runners in the select six-horse field including Bound For Earth who denied Guelph by a short head in the Furious Stakes.
He has nominated second elect Arabian Gold as the rival he fears most, pointing to her recent barrier trial victory over Wednesday’s Cameron Handicap winner Toydini and Group One winner Streama.
“The trial the other day where she handled Toydini and Streama with consummate ease tells you she’s going very well,” O’Shea said.
“Again, she’s a horse coming out of the winter with residual fitness. She will be very hard to beat first-up there on Saturday.”
The David Vandyke-trained Arabian Gold has won four of her six starts, the past three in succession during June and July.
Bound For Earth also boasts a promising record with two wins from four starts and a Group Two placing behind subsequent Golden Rose winner Zoustar in Brisbane.
While she has the advantage of a recent run, O’Shea feels Bound To Earth remains open to vast improvement, admitting the filly is “still very woolly in the coat”.
Stablemate Romantic Moon finished fifth to Bound For Earth in the Furious Stakes (1200m) but will be suited by the 200m distance rise at Randwick.
Guelph was $1.90 with TAB fixed odds on Thursday ahead of Arabian Gold at $2.80 and Bound For Earth ($6).
Romantic Moon is a $17 chance.