Golden Slipper Stakes

Golden Slipper Stakes

The Group 1 Golden Slipper Stakes is Australia’s biggest race for two-year-old thoroughbreds. The race is run over 1200m at Rosehill Gardens Racecourse under Set Weights conditions in the month of March as part of the Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival.

More than 2,000 nominations are received early before that number substantially reduces with first and second acceptances. Final acceptances sort out the contenders from the pretenders with a hefty entry fee required in order to be in the running to gain a start in the iconic race.

The Golden Slipper Stakes is worth $3.5 million in prize money, with the winner pocketing $2 million, making it the richest two-year-old race in the world. It is a stallion-making race that has numerous ballot-exempt races. These are the Silver Slipper Stakes, Sweet Embrace Stakes, Skyline Stakes, Reisling Stakes, Todman Stakes, Magic Night Stakes and Pago Pago Stakes.

First held in 1957 when won by Todman in a time of 1:11.40, the Golden Slipper Stakes has a prestigious honour roll of winners. The 1960 winner Sky High would have an illustrious career which would see him win 29 races from 55 starts. He captured races such as the Victoria Derby, Lightning Stakes (twice), Epsom Handicap and Mackinnon Stakes, with his impressive career resume landing him in the Australian Racing Hall of Fame.

The 1970s was a good decade for Golden Slipper winners with Baguette (1970), Luskin Star (1977) and Manikato (1978) featuring in the winner’s list. Manikato also captured the Blue Diamond Stakes, Caulfield Guineas, Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (known back then as the Invitation Stakes), four Futurity Stakes, Doomben 10,000 (Rothmans 100,000), five William Reid Stakes and the George Ryder Stakes.

Recent notable winners of the Golden Slipper include Miss Finland in 2006, Sebring (2008), Sepoy (2011), Pierro (2012), Capitalist (2016) and She Will Reign (2017).

Not all Golden Slipper winners go on to have stellar careers with Phelan Ready a great example. He captured the 2009 Magic Millions 2YO Classic at his third start as a $51 roughie. Two starts later and he would win the Golden Slipper as a $26 chance. Both victories would net connections $3,140,000. He would win another $600,000 in 57 other starts for a career record of 59 starts, four wins and 13 minor placings. Despite not winning more races like other Golden Slipper winners, it’s unlikely connections were complaining!

The most successful trainers in the Golden Slipper are Tommy Smith and his daughter Gai Waterhouse with six wins each. Bart Cummings, Clarry Conners and Lee Freedman trained four winners apiece in the race.

Shane Dye and Ron Quinton are the most successful jockeys in Golden Slipper history. Dye won four consecutive Slippers between 1989-92 when riding home Courtza, Canny Lad, Tierce and Burst. Quinton captured success with Marscay (1982), Sir Dapper (1983), Rory’s Jester (1985) and Marauding (1987). Mick Dittman, Kevin Langby and Athol Mulley all tasted success on three occasions each.

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