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O’Shea to up the banter on Oaks Day

Fri 7 June 2024

By Andrew Smith

Trainer John O’Shea is not shying away from the significant task that awaits Good Banter in tomorrow’s Queensland Oaks.

Now based at Randwick, the former Queenslander was at Eagle Farm on Tuesday morning to watch the three-year-old complete trackwork ahead of this weekend’s Group 1 feature.

Good Banter will jump from barrier 5 in the $700,000 event at Eagle Farm with Jamie Kah on board.

O’Shea said the filly was raring to go after a first-up run in the The Roses two weeks ago.

“She’d had a couple of weeks in the paddock, so that should have just brought her on nicely, and she looked strong from her work Tuesday morning,” O’Shea said.

“She pleased us, so we are looking forward to Saturday.”

The Roses winner Scarlet Oak will line up in the Oaks with champion hoop James McDonald in the saddle, one of five Chris Waller-trained horses in the 2200m event.

O’Shea said he wasn’t reading too much into Good Banter’s seventh placing in the Group 2 running at Doomben.

“I think she just ended up on the worst part of the track there that day at Doomben in The Roses where you needed to find 8-10 out,” O’Shea said.

“She was sort of tracked up on the inside in the worst part of the ground.

“It was good through the line though and was a more than acceptable first-up run.”

Good Banter was paying $19 as of Friday morning, with Scarlet Oak sitting as favourite at $3.60.

O’Shea will be looking for his second metropolitan win of the season in Queensland, after Junqueira stormed home in the 3YO & 4YO Fillies & Mares Class 4 Plate on The Wave Day on the Gold Coast.

Another exciting prospect for the stable on Oaks Day will be Fall For Cindy who will go round in the Magic Millions National Classic.

The four-year-old is coming off the back of two straight wins after a spell, the first of which included a dead heat with Rise Of The Masses at Hawkesbury early last month.

O’Shea believed Fall For Cindy would be able to handle the step up to the mile in the weight-for-age race.

“We made a conscious decision to only send horses up here capable of handling heavy ground, and she handles heavy ground,” O’Shea said.

“It’s a little query at the mile, she hasn’t won at it but there’s every indication she’ll get it.

“But she’s in great form and she’ll get through the ground so no reason she couldn’t run a mile.”

Fall For Cindy is rated an $8 chance, with Kah also in the saddle.