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2021 Melbourne Cup winning jockey James McDonald is convinced Coolangatta’s time away from the track and a lack of first class racing is a good thing and will be ready to fire on all cylinders when lining up in the $5m Golden Slipper

James Mcdonald believes Coolangatta is ready to go

It’s been 63 days since Coolangatta last run with trainers Ciaron Maher and David Eustace avoiding running the filly on the heavy tracks in Sydney and McDonald believes this will serve her well as she attempts to win the Group 1 Golden Slipper on Saturday.

If Coolangatta was to win the Golden Slipper she would set a new record for time between runs and winning a Slipper beating Sebrings record of 49 days without a run before he won the race back in 2008.

“It is obviously a hard thing to have that break from the ‘Magics’ (Magic Millions) to the Slipper but I think it might be a blessing now. She is coming in on fresh legs,” said McDonald, who his chasing his 50th Australian Group One win on Saturday.

“The wet tracks in Sydney lately have been as testing as we have had for many years and you never know how much it takes out of younger horses.

“Coolangatta hasn’t had a gut buster on heavy ground. She is with great trainers and is in a very good spot.”

The Maher and Eustace filly currently sits as a $4.50 favourite for the 2022 Golden Slipper which is the price she has held strong since winning the Gimcrack Stakes convincingly back in October.

With a potential market shift depending on the barrier draw, McDonald confirmed he would ideally like Coolangatta drawn on the inside between barriers 1 and 8.

“Anything close to the white rail - on the inside!” McDonald said.

“Depending on the ground, probably barriers four to eight would be perfect but if we drew in close, I wouldn’t be worried. I just don’t want barrier 16.”

The Rosehill Gardens track was rated as a soft 7 on Monday and with the track set to dry further the track should improve further as we head towards the weekend.

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