2015 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes an Option for First Seal

August 18th, 2015

First Seal was unlucky not to post a second success at the highest level through her recent Autumn Carnival campaign, however trainer John Thompson has revealed the four-year-old will be given every chance to return to winning form this time.

First Seal will target races like the 2015 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes, should she travel to Melbourne this spring. Photo: Steve Hart

First Seal will target races like the 2015 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes, should she travel to Melbourne this spring. Photo: Steve Hart

Trained out of Thompson’s Randwick stables, First Seal returned to racing this year for second in the Group 2 Light Fingers Stakes (1200m) on February 14th; returning to the winner’s circle in the Group 2 Surround Stakes (1400m) before again finishing second in each of the Group 1 Coolmore Classic (1500m) and Group 1 Vinery Stud Stakes (2000m).

Confirming Saturday’s Group 2 Warwick Stakes (1400m) will figure as the first point of call for the classy daughter of Fastnet Rock this time should the Randwick surface remain firm, Thompson told Racing Ahead he is thrilled with the mare’s condition, but she will take greater benefit from the run.

“She’s had two trials and they’ve just brought her along nicely to head off to the races now,” Thompson said.

“She’ll improve from the run but she’s in great shape, looks fantastic and is ready to go.

“She’s had a couple of decent racing preps now and it just makes her more seasoned, but she’s just a quality horse.

“She’ll run in the Warwick Stakes if the track is dry. There’s showers second part of the week but it looks pretty good at the moment.

“She worked solid this morning over six furlongs with a mate and it was good, strong work.”

Thompson confirmed he will have no issue floating First Seal to Melbourne should Sydney experience inclement weather through the Spring Carnival; underling races like the 2015 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m) and Group 1 Toorak Handicap (1600m) as targets.

“If she stays in Sydney she’ll head towards the Epsom, probably through the weight-for-age path. If she goes to Melbourne we’ll go through races like the Sir Rupert Clarke and the Toorak – maybe even the Memsie first-up, if it is wet,” Thompson said.

“At this stage we’ll stick to up to a mile races this prep.”

Posting four wins and five minors through only eleven career starts so far, First Seal stamped her claims as a serious racehorse through the 2014 Spring Carnival; taking out each of the Group 2 Tea Rose Stakes (1400m) and Group 1 Flight Stakes (1600m) before finishing second in the Group 1 Spring Champions Stakes (2000m) most notably.

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