Flemington-based trainer Danny O’Brien has begun preparations for his veteran seven-year-old Master O’Reilly to make his fourth consecutive Melbourne Cup appearance in the historic 150th running of the famous two-miler this year.
O’Reilly gelding Master O’Reilly made his Melbourne Cup debut in 2007 when he ran eighth to Efficient. He continued on to start in the next two Melbourne Cups finishing a gallant fourth in both 2008 to Viewed and 2009 to Shocking.
The rising stayer, who won the Caulfield Cup in 2007, has now started pre-training for his spring campaign this year at Matthew Feiss’ Woodstock property.
After Master O’Reilly has built up his fitness out there he will be moved to either Barwon Heads or Flemington as his training is increased ahead of the Melbourne Cup Carnival, with the ultimate goal being the $6 million Melbourne Cup (3200m) on Tuesday November 2.
Master O’Reilly has won eight of his 40 career starts to date for over $2.9 million in prizemoney. His recent record has seen him start in 25 consecutive black-type races.
Another horse on target for a run in this year’s Melbourne Cup is 2008 runner-up Bauer. Trained by the world-renowned mentor Luca Cumani in Great Britain, the great grey was devastatingly close to adding a Melbourne Cup to his record two years back when he was beaten by just a short-half-head by Viewed.
Now recovered from an injured tendon, the impressive European stayer will start more serious track work including gallops from next month. Bauer will have another two or three starts in Europe and if he performs well will head to Melbourne.
With only five months to go before the 150th Melbourne Cup, punters are starting to get their selections ready keeping an eye on hopefuls including Master O’Reilly and Bauer so when the Spring Carnival Racing kicks off they can place a bet on their favourites at the leading online bookmakers such as Ladbrokes.com.au.