|When||Saturday, March 21, 2020|
|Where||Rosehill Gardens, Sydney|
|Prize Money||$3.5 Million|
The Golden Slipper is the premier race for two year olds in the world, and arguably New South Wales’ most recognisable feature.
Held in Sydney at the picturesque Rosehill Gardens, the most lucrative two-year-old race on the planet, is the crown jewel in the Golden Slipper Carnival.
With the 3.5 million in prizemoney, the Golden Slipper is run over 1,200 metres and is a set-weight race.
The race was first run and won in 1957 by Todman, who was out of Star Kingdom. The Star Kingdom bloodline was a magnificent formula for success in the race with the next four Golden Slipper winners coming via the sire.
For those who are not familiar with the Australian horse racing landscape week-to-week some of the names competing in the Slipper may not be as recognisable but the race has been a launching pad for some of the industry’s biggest household names.
Legendary jockey Darren Beadman succinctly described what makes the Slipper a must-see event.
“(I was asked prior to the carnival) what makes the Golden Slipper such a special race,” the two-time Slipper winning Jockey Beadman said.
“My reply was: ‘Have you got a crystal ball?’ To me, this is what makes the race so great because there is so much mystery about it.
“The two-year-olds come and go, they are here today and gone tomorrow, and it is tough just to qualify for a start. It is a race that keeps you on your toes, keeps you guessing all season.”
The prize money is enormous, but it is the mystique and the allure of racing immortality that will keep the best in the world coming back year after year to compete for the Golden Slipper.
2020 Golden Slipper betting odds
After winning the Group 2 Todman Stakes and the Silver Slipper Farnan is the $4.80 favourite for the Golden Slipper at online bookmaker Sportsbet.
Two other ballot exempt runners, Prague (Pago Pago Stakes) sits at $18 and Magic Night Stakes winner Thermosphere $35.
Blue Diamond Stakes winner Tagaloa sits second at $5 with Hanseatic ($7) and Minhaaj ($8.50) the only other runners in single figures.
Most successful trainers at the Golden Slipper
When looking through the trainers who have saluted in the Golden Slipper you begin to understand just how important this race is on the calendar each year.
There is no surprise to see the Queen of the turf, Gai Waterhouse atop the Golden Slipper honour roll with six wins to her name, with the legendary Tommy Smith, and Gai’s father, also on the same amount of wins. Waterhouse equalled her Dad’s record in 2015, when she trained Vancouver to victory, with the side show of whether she will stand alone as the most successful Slipper trainer set to provide an interesting sideshow in 2017 and beyond.
The great Bart Cummings trained four Slipper winners between 1966 and 1979, with a fifth proving incredibly elusive for the ‘Cups King’. Other trainers to have won the race four times include modern day great Lee Freedman and Clarry Conners.
Only seven trainers in history have won more than one Golden Slipper, with 29 separate trainers notching up just one win in the world’s richest two-year-old race.
Multiple training wins in the Golden Slipper
Tommy Smith: 1971. 1972, 1974, 1975, 1986, 1987
Gai Waterhouse: 2001, 2004, 2008, 2012, 2013, 2015
Clarry Conners: 1991, 1992, 1998, 2000
Bart Cummings: 1966, 1973, 1976, 1979
John Hawkes: 1997, 2007, 2014, 2018
Jack Green: 1958, 1960
Harry Plant: 1959, 1961
Most successful jockeys to take part in the Golden Slipper
Just like the list of trainers who have saluted in the Golden Slipper reads like a hall-of-fame induction, the jockeys who have mounted multiple winners in the big race could serve as a best-of-the-best list for horse racing enthusiasts.
Ron Quinton and Shane Dye are men who have notched up four wins each in the Slipper, while Mick Dittman, Kevin Langby and Athol Mulley have three wins each.
Tommy Berry, who won his second Slipper at the age of 24 looks set to be the next dominant jockey in the big race after steering Vancouver to an enormous against-the-odds win in the 2015 race.
Incredibly, the Golden Slipper is one race that Damian Oliver has not dominated over his decorated career, with his solitary win coming in 2007 aboard Forensics.
Tips for betting on the Golden Slipper
For a race as lucrative as the Slipper, the form leading into the big race has failed to truly hold up as much as punters would have liked.
As with any group of youngsters, there is a certain amount of unpredictability associated with them, with many great horses stumbling at their biggest test as a two year old.
In the period between 2005 and 2016 only two favourites have been first past the post in the Slipper, and over half of those 11 winners have been beaten in their last start before the Slipper.
Those looking to place a bet on the Golden Slipper should look for horses that draw the inside barriers – 13 of the last 30 winners have drawn barriers one to five.
Sometimes in horse racing it is just as good to go with your gut and forget the form – the Golden Slipper is a prime example of when favourite backing is better left to the mug punters.
Golden Slipper order of entry
Like most big name races in Australia, the Golden Slipper requires a qualifying factor.
There are number of ballot exempt races heading into the slipper, but outside of those races the nominated runners will gain access based prize money accrued.
2019 Golden Slipper result
Golden Slipper – Recent runnings
|Kiamichi||Estijaab||She Will Reign||Capitalist||Vancouver|
|Godolphin||Hawkes Racing||Gary Portelli||P & P Snowden||Gai Waterhouse|
|Damian Lane||Brenton Avdulla||Ben Melham||Blake Shinn||Tommy Berry|
- There were a number of Godolphin runners taking part in the 2019 Golden Slipper – six to be precise – and spectacularly the longest priced runner of them all took out the feature. Damien Lane hunted forward on the two-year-old filly and she ran them into the ground from the front, booting clear at the 300m mark to deliver what proved to be an unassailable lead.
- The big concern with Estijaab heading into the 2019 race was the wide barrier, but after flying out of the gates early backers would have felt a little more at ease. Not expending too much energy finding the front meant Brenton Avdulla had the horse underneath him to hold out the fast-finishing Oohood, kicking the horse home to win by half a length.
- Despite drifting throughout the latter stages of the 2017 Golden Slipper market, two-year-old filly She Will Reign relished the wet conditions to score a convincing win. The Gary Portelli-trained filly came along the inside of Houtzen, which set a fast tempo up front, before hitting the front and kicking away over Frolic, which defeated She Will Reign in the Reisling Stakes prior. Read full report.
- Capitalist had been the boom two-year-old, before a so so performance in the Group 2 Todman Stakes saw the colt lose favouritism for the Golden Slipper. But when the slipper rolled around the Chestnut, trained by Peter and Paul Snowden, made it four wins from five starts. Read a full report here.
- Vancouver has had a short but highly distinguished career on the track, including victory in the Golden Slipper with Tommy Berry onboard. He was then bought by leading Irish operation Coolmore as a stud prospect, following in the footsteps of 2012 winner Pierro (also trained by Waterhouse). Vancouver defeated stable-mate English with Lake Geneva, a close third. Vancouver is now trained by leading Irish trainer Aidan O’Brien.
|Gai Waterhouse||Gai Waterhouse||Peter Snowden||Ellerton/Zahra||B & J McLachlin|
|Tommy Berry||Nash Rawiller||Kerrin McEvoy||Brett Prebble||Brad Rawiller|
- Mossfun, guided by champion New Zealand jockey James McDonald, overcame a shocking start to win the 2014 edition of the Slipper. After struggling out of the gates, Mossfun was at the back of the field and in trouble. McDonald went to the rail and when the field fanned at the straight found clear running and was urged home by a young McDonald. Mossfun was trained by Michael and John Hawkes, the latter’s third victory in the great race.
- Overreach was the heavy favourite with punters and bookies alike in the lead up to the 2013 Golden Slipper and the Gai Waterhouse-trained filly delivered in style. After giving the Overreach the perfect run on the rails just behind the leaders, Berry brought her off the fence to the middle of the track in the straight and she did the rest, grinding it out to the line to win on the wet track.
- Quality colt and future stallion Pierro gave champion trainer Gai Waterhouse her fourth Golden Slipper success in 2012. Waterhouse showed her usual confidence with Pierro after it won the Breeders Plate earlier in the season, but that confidence was justified as it remained unbeaten from his first four starts. Pierro didn’t have many friends in the market after easing from $5.50 to $6.50 before the jump.
- Sepoy suffered a defeat prior to running in the Golden Slipper, which prompted bookmakers to ease it in the betting, but the quality two-year-old was too good for them. Jockey Kerrin McEvoy took the colt to the front and was never headed in the run to the line.
- Crystal Lily was a late entry into the Golden Slipper after its owner paid $150,000 to get her into the race. Always one to show erratic behaviour on the track, Crystal Lily veered out in the run to the line and jockey Brett Prebble couldn’t get a hold of the filly, but she was simply too quick for them.
- Phelan Ready in 2009 completed one of the most eye-catching Slipper wins in recent times. Settling at the back of the field the horse looked out paced entering the straight but as horses drifted wide the run emerged off the rails and the horse obliged, powering to the line to record a two length victory.
Golden Slipper past winners list
|Year||Golden Slipper Past Winner|
|2017||She Will Reign|
|2000||Belle Du Jour|