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O'Shea entrusts his apprentice with a good one

Astute trainer John O'Shea says Lester Grace "deserves the opportunity" to ride one of the stable's better horses in White Sage when the undefeated filly steps out in Saturday's Cellarbrations Scone Handicap (1350m) at Rosehill.

O'Shea watched Grace partner Kencella to victory for him at Wednesday's Warwick Farm meeting describing the ride as "smart" after the jockey tracked a wide path throughout.

"He didn't push to the horse to find the rail. He kept him in his comfort zone and probably in the better going," O'Shea said.

From barrier one on Saturday, the 3kg claiming apprentice could find himself the target of rival hoops but O'Shea says he's ready to prove himself "on a good horse in a good race".

"Lester's done plenty of work on our horses and he's come a long way," he said.

"He deserves the chance to ride a nice horse like this."

White Sage is three from three, winning each of her starts by a combined total of 14 lengths, and has been penalised accordingly after the handicapper allotted her 59.5kg for Saturday's race.

"Certainly Lester's 3kg off will help. It means she carries the same weight as she did in her last start win in the same grade," he said.

"We'll get through Saturday before making any plans for her but she's got ability and looks to have a bright future. Bit like her rider."

Nic Ashman - 14th November 2013
 
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