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Thermosphere races into G1 Golden Slipper calculations with G3 Rosehill win

Mike Hedge

The example has been set, but it remains to be seen whether it will be followed by Thermosphere who earned herself a G1 Golden Slipper start at Rosehill on Saturday.

Thermosphere won the G3 Magic Night Stakes, the same race that preceded Kiamichi leading in an “all-blue” sweep of the placings a week later in the 2019 Golden Slipper.

While trainer James Cummings happily acknowledged the parallel paths taken by the two fillies, he remained cautious about committing Thermosphere to next weekend’s 2YO feature.

"I think we will enjoy the win before we get too carried away because we've still got time up our sleeve," Cummings said.

Like Kiamichi, Thermosphere won the Magic Night on a wet Rosehill track that had become completely waterlogged by Slipper day.

"Kiamichi won on a rain-affected track seven days out last year and that proved to be vital on Slipper day when it was completely bottomless,” the trainer said.

"That was a good day for Godolphin and hopefully it will be a good day next week."

"We will do the right thing by her. If she's absolutely bouncing and ready to have a crack, then we will do the sporting thing by her and give her a chance."

Thermosphere broke through for her maiden success only two weeks ago and despite stepping up dramatically in class, there was plenty to like about her previous win which was achieved after missing the start and having to circle the field.

In the Magic Night, jockey James McDonald bounced his filly out of the gates before allowing her to drift back to the middle of the field.

He then found one to follow into the straight before asking Thermosphere to take a tight run at the 200m.

“James was able to slide into the race when he wanted to and she was good enough to do what she was asked to do,” Cummings said.

For McDonald, who had won the G1 Golden Rose on Thermosphere’s sire Exosphere, the filly responded exactly as he wanted.

“There were a few moments there when she had to show some desire, and she did it,” McDonald said.

McDonald, drove the filly through a narrow gap and grabbed the runner-up Time Is Precious a few strides from the line with Jemss, another daughter of Exosphere, close behind in third place.

The Golden Slipper, the world’s richest juvenile race, will be run at Rosehill on Saturday, 21 March.

Also on Saturday’s Rosehill card, the French import Cascadian finished third in the G2 Ajax Stakes after enduring a troublesome final 200m.