Jockey Josh Parr has learned from Shannara’s luckless last-start defeat and is confident the well-related mare can return to the winner’s circle in Saturday’s Listed Angst Stakes at Rosehill.
Parr rode Shannara for the first time in a race at Rosehill two weeks ago when the five-year-old was disappointed for a run in the straight before finishing fourth to stablemate Screen in the $250,000 Golden Pendant (1200m).
Shannara, a full-sister to champion Lonhro, is the $4.60 favourite for the Angst (1400m) at Rosehill.
“I had ridden her in plenty of trackwork before but that was my first race ride on her last start,” Parr said.
“I was pretty well aware of how she was going to run first-up but I’m sure riding her in a race has furthered my knowledge on how she races and I’m glad to be back on her on Saturday.
“I reckon having had that ride on her will help me tomorrow.”
Shannara and Screen both went for the same run in the straight in the Golden Pendant and it was the latter that got through at the right time and went on to win.
Parr believes the result would have been different had Shannara got clear when he wanted.
“Hindsight is a beautiful thing and it’s easy to say she should have won, but I do believe she should have won,” Parr said.
Parr said Shannara possesses a very good turn of foot but learned she probably doesn’t produce it until she is in the clear and balanced up, which is something he will be mindful of on Saturday.
Adding to Shannara’s prospects was trainer Peter Snowden’s decision not to accept for the fillies and mares feature with Golden Pendant winner Screen.
“To be honest, I’m glad Screen is not there even though I thought we should have beaten her the other day,” Parr said.
“She’s been in really good form and you can’t knock winning form.”
Shannara has won three of her 14 starts including a valuable stakes victory in the Listed Dark Jewel (1400m) at Scone in May.
The daughter of Octagonal was runner-up in the Angst last year when the race was run at Randwick.
Parr has a number of rides for the Darley team at Rosehill including two-year-old first starter Tatra in the Manildra Group Handicap (1100m).
“He’s a very nice horse,” Parr said.
“He won his trial at Canterbury, I rode him that day, and he was in the same trial as the Breeders Plate winner (Pierro).
“He’s probably not the ideal early-running two-year-old, over 1100 metres I hope they don’t run him off his feet, but I wouldn’t be surprised if he won tomorrow.
“He’ll be a nice horse in time.”
The Darley team also welcomes Group One winner Erewhon back to the races for the first time in a year on Saturday with Rod Quinn to ride the Spring Champion Stakes winner in the Bowermans Office Furniture Handicap.