First Seal Scores Upset 2014 Tea Rose Stakes Victory

September 20th, 2014

First Seal has perhaps recorded the day’s big upset at Randwick this afternoon, displaying a superior turn of foot in the final straight to win the Group 2 Tea Rose Stakes (1400m); jumping as a rank $21 outsider for success.

First Seal has claimed a shock victory in the 2014 Tea Rose Stakes

First Seal has claimed a shock victory in the 2014 Tea Rose Stakes. Photo: Steve Hart

Jumping from the gates well, the Fastnet Rock filly settled in prime positon from the ideal barrier 1 on the heels of early leaders and clear favourites Earthquake and Winx, who set a noticeably quick tempo over the back straight and rounding the bend.

Finding the final straight pressed on the rails; First Seal steadily spooled up, allowing Earthquake more than a length’s head start before incredibly charging to the lead and finishing the line a comfortable length in the clear.

Understandably thrilled with First Seal’s performance for victory in the 2014 Tea Rose Stakes, trainer John Thompson ranked the young filly amongst the best horses he has trained to date.

“Back on a dry track, she just hasn’t been showing that turn of foot that we know she has at home and back today,” Thompson said following the Tea Rose Stakes.

“Did get a good run in the race from barrier 1 but she’s run down two of the best fillies in the country there, she’s untapped, very, very high-class filly and hopefully she can go on to bigger and better things.

“Once she gets over those classic distances she’ll really come to the fore; I said that to the owners yesterday these horses will probably be too nippy over the 1400 but as I said, class takes you and long way and I’d struggle to think of a better horse I’ve had.”

Jockey Blake Shinn secured a riding double at Randwick this afternoon when steering First Seal to victory in the 2014 Tea Rose Stakes, and was thrilled to deliver Thompson a maiden Stakes win under his own training banner.

“Barriers win races, as we know, and I was able to draw the plum barrier in barrier 1 and just never spent any petrol on the back of Earthquake,” Shinn said immediately after dismounting.

“Had Winx well within my sights, they rolled off and I just sat as long as I could and I knew she’d be there for me, and she let down great – she’s a pretty good filly and I think she’s going to run at least a mile, 2000m which is great.

“She’s got a big stride and I was able to just utilize that and get into a good rhythm off the back of Earthquake which bowled along nicely and she quickened off that.

“Sensational win, just so happy for John Thompson going out on his own and winning a Stakes race, it’s sensational for him.”

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2014 Tea Rose Stakes Results

Finish No. Horse Trainer Jockey Margin Bar. Weight Starting Price
1 7 FIRST SEAL John P Thompson Blake Shinn 1 56kg $19
2 4 WINX Chris Waller Jason Collett 0.8L 2 56kg $1.80F
3 1 EARTHQUAKE John O’Shea Kerrin McEvoy 1L 3 56kg $3.60
4 3 ALPHA MISS Gary Nickson Brenton Avdulla 2.8L 6 56kg $20
5 5 SULTRY FEELING Bart & James Cummings Tye Angland 4.2L 5 56kg $18
6 6 LADY SHARAPOVA Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes James McDonald 4.5L 4 56kg $11
7 2 PEGGY JEAN Gerald Ryan Jim Cassidy 4.9L 7 56kg $21