Thu, Oct 18, 12:40pm by Staff Writer
The Caulfield component of Melbourne’s Spring Carnival concludes on Saturday with the running of the Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m). The rail is out six-metres and the track was a good-4 at acceptances, with scattered light showers forecast leading into race day.
A capacity field of 18 plus the two emergencies have accepted for the Caulfield Cup, with the internationals making up a large portion of runners although two locally trained horses have been fighting out favouritism over the past few weeks.
Kings Will Dream ($5) has been waiting for this day since gaining an automatic entry after winning the Listed Mornington Cup (2400m) back in March. That was his sixth career win – all in a row – and while he hasn’t won from his four starts this prep he’s finished within 2L of the winner at each of his runs, he’s up to the 2400m and drops to 53kg. Weir also saddles up stable mates Night’s Watch ($15) – who won the G3 Naturalism (2000m) here two starts back, and Gallic Chieftain ($51), and both are on the back-up after running in the G1 Caulfield Stakes (2000m) and G2 Herbert Power (2400m) respectively last week.
Youngstar ($6) was a G1 QLD Oaks (2200m) winner earlier in the year and although she was obviously racing well in the winter, she has stepped up again this preparation. She’s fourth-up here and comes into this off a 1L second to Winx – finishing alongside Kings Will Dream – in the G1 Turnbull (2000m) at Flemington. Waller also has the first emergency in the race, Patrick Erin ($41) – a last start G1 Metrop (2400m) winner at Randwick.
Team Williams line up with three runners, The Cliffsofmoher ($7) – trained by Aidan O’Brien, and Homesman ($11) and The Taj Mahal ($17) both trained by Liam Howley. The Cliffsofmoher was good last week when fourth to Benbatl in the Caulfield Stakes, in what was his debut Aussie run. Homesman was seventh in that race, which came off the back of a G1 Underwood (1800m) victory prior while The Taj Mahal narrowly edged out Gallic Chieftain at his most recent run in the G3 JRA Cup (2040m) at Moonee Valley.
Ace High ($11) was a G1 VRC Derby (2500m) winner last spring, then was beaten in a photo-finish in the ATC Derby (2400m), and he’s off a comfortable last start G2 Hill Stakes (2000m) victory at Randwick over It’s Somewhat and Egg Tart.
Godolphin trainer Saeed Bin Suroor and jockey Pat Cosgrave won with Benbatl last week and they’ll team up with top weight Best Solution ($16). He’s won all his three runs this prep – his last two in G1 grade – but he’ll have his work cut out from barrier 17.
The Hayes/Dabernig team won this race last year with Boom Time and they’ve got Ventura Storm ($31) here. Mike Moroney saddles up Vengeur Masque ($91) and Sound Check ($23), the latter making his Australian debut after a 0.3L second to Best Solution at his most recent run. Chestnut Coat ($18) is given a chance according to the market and he’s joined by fellow Japanese import, Sole Impact ($51) – both to be ridden by Japanese jockeys while Duretto ($23) and Red Vernon ($20) have solid enough form over in the UK and like all internationals, they could jump out of the ground at their first run in Australia.
Suggested Bet: Looking for Best of Days ($3.10, race 7 number 7) to make it a good day at Caulfield in what looks a suitable race for the Godolphin five-year-old. He was good when a close second to Furrion over 1700m here at Caulfield and while his staying form doesn’t read too well overseas, the 2000m shouldn’t be an issue. Trap For Fools will be hard to run down but leaving that in the capable hands of James McDonald.
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