Shopaholic Announces Arrival On Centre Stage

Saturday’s Gr.3 Vanity Stakes (1410m) at Flemington was expected to prove the confirmation of one of Australia’s best fillies, but instead it could have unveiled a new one.

WS-bred and raced three-year-old Shopaholic issued a hit to punters and announced herself potentially one of the best of her generation when ran down heavily-backed favourite Mosheen in the $A150,000 event.

The $14 chance’s win was unexpected by punters, who hammered Mosheen into $1.45 favouritism, but didn’t come as a complete surprise to O’Brien, who also trained her dam Splashing out to Gr 3 success at Caulfield and to a Gr.1 placing to Gold Edition.

“Mosheen was obviously the testing material in the spring, her and Atlantic Jewel, but our filly is catching up to them now and she is doing a very good job,” the Flemington trainer told Racing Victoria. “I knew this filly was in great order. She’d had a nice win first-up and she’d come on super and you can’t stay at home because of one horse.”

Rewarding this approach, Shopaholic mounted a determinned challenge in the straight, driving at the likely looking winner Mosheen late to get up in the final stride.

“She got me a little bit false at the top bend turning in because I thought I had that second horse covered a bit easier than what I did and I never got to the front till right on the wire,” successful rider Dwayne Dunn said.

“But to her credit she dug deep. Obviously she is a top class mare the second horse, but my horse just got beat in a really good race at Sandown (Twilight Glow Stakes) so we have a pretty big opinion of her.” O’Brien said Shopaholic would most likely back up in the Gr 2 Angus Armanasco Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield next Saturday before returning to Flemington for the $400,000 Gr 2 Kewney Stakes on 10 March.

Representing her sire Pins’ 7th individual stakes winners this term, Shopaholic is a daughter of the O’Reilly mare Splashing Out who won the Gr 3 Thoroughbred Club Stakes.

WS sold a full-brother to Hong Kong interests for $160,000 during the recent Premier Sale at Karaka.

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