International runners eye off 150th Melbourne Cup

With the 150th Melbourne Cup two months away today, international connections are beginning to finalise plans to bring their gallopers to Australia for the race.Racing Victoria’s Leigh Jordon spoke to Just Horse Racing about the likely international representation in the 2010 Melbourne Cup.

One of the more successful trainers in the Melbourne Cup in recent times has been the Irish wizard Dermot Weld.

Weld is the only European trainer to have won the Melbourne Cup, having succeeded with Vintage Crop in 1993 and with Media Puzzle in 2002.

This year, his hand looks as strong as ever.

Ascot Gold Cup winner Rite of Passage was allotted 57kg for the Melbourne Cup, while his stablemate, 2008 fifth placegetter Profound Beauty was allotted 54kg.

This means that both will get a start, and it is believed that both will enter quarantine after they run in Saturday week’s Group 1 Irish St Leger (2800m) at The Curragh.

Newmarket trainer Luca Cumani has only had runners in the last four Melbourne Cups, but of his five runners, he has had two placegetters – Purple Moon in 2007 and Bauer in 2008.

This year, he has two confirmed visitors.

Improving handicapper Drunken Sailor showed a great turn of foot to win the Listed March Stakes on the line last Saturday night, while the Australian-owned Manighar ran 2nd in the Group 2 Prix Kergorlay the week before.

Both will have one lead up run in Australia, with one to run in the Caulfield Cup and one to run in the Geelong Cup.

Meanwhile, 2008 runner up Bauer has his first run in almost two years tonight at Salisbury.

A good effort may see him on the plane to Melbourne.

The lightly raced Sans Frontieres is coming to Australia, trainer Jeremy Noseda has confirmed.

Speaking to Jim McGrath from Britain’s Telegraph, Noseda said he thought that Sans Frontieres was the right type for the Melbourne Cup.

“I think he has the perfect profile from what I know about the race. I’ve watched videos of the last nine runnings of the Cup,” Noseda said.

France will be represented in the Cup this year with the Australian-owned Americain to run in the race.

Americain, trained by Alain de Royer Dupre, defeated Manighar in the Prix Kergorlay, confirming a trip down under.

The Japanese will be returning to Melbourne after four years in the wilderness.

While their top drawcards, Jaguar Mail and Meiner Kitz, won’t be coming to Melbourne, old warrior Tokai Trick will fly the flag for the Land of the Rising Sun.

Hong Kong is also likely to be represented for the first time since 2002, with classy stayer Mr Medici about to enter quarantine.

While his main target is the Caulfield Cup, a Melbourne Cup tilt hasn’t been ruled out.

As reported earlier today, Godolphin are to confirm their team in the next few days. However, it is likely to feature Campanologist, Cavalryman, Holberg or Once More Dubai. Click here to read more.

It is also possible that other races in the next two weeks may reveal new Melbourne Cup candidates.

Written by Andrew Hawkins

02 Sep 2010

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