Cumain’s Drunken Sailor Improves 2010 Melbourne Cup Chances with Weekend Win

Drunken Sailor, prepared by premier Newmarket trainer Luca Cumani, enjoyed a quality win at Goodwood on Saturday to further improve his chances of a run in the 2010 Melbourne Cup this November.

Six-year-old Drunken Sailor is shaping up as Cumani’s top Melbourne Cup chance this year after he claimed a last-stride win in the Listed March Stakes (2800m) on Saturday.

Making his fifth straight appearance at the Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival, Cumani is hoping this year is his year in the Melbourne Cup after twice training the second placegetters in the world’s richest handicap with Bauer (2008) and Purple Moon (2007).

Having shown continual improvement over his 31 career starts, Tendulkar gelding Drunken Sailor has won over the Melbourne Cup distance of 3200m proving himself as a genuine stayer with an impressive turn of foot and making him a real contender for the $6 million Flemington feature on November 2.

Manighar is Cumani’s other top chance in the 150th Melbourne Cup, after finishing second to fellow Cup contender Americain in the Group 2 Prix Kergorlay (3000m) in France last weekend.

However Purple Moon has been ruled out due to injury and Bauer, who hasn’t raced since suffering a tendon injury when beaten by a mere nose in the 2008 Melbourne Cup by Viewed, is still in doubt.

Eight-year-old grey Bauer has the Persian Punch Stakes (2800m) scheduled as his return to racing at Sailsbury on Thursday night and his performance there will determine whether Cumani presses on to the Melbourne Cup with him.

Drunken Sailor is currently paying $61 through Ladbrokes.com.au in the early Melbourne Cup markets, his odds sure to shorten, while Manighar is higher up at $31.

Both are expected to arrive in Melbourne on September 25 following a bout in quarantine that they enter on Wednesday.

This Wednesday, September 1, is also when the 2010 Melbourne Cup weights will be announced.

In other 2010 Melbourne Cup news, last year’s favourite Alcopop was defeated in his first-up spring start on Saturday.

Alcopop finished fifth to classy Galileo four-year-old Spacecraft in the $80,000 Listed Penny Edition Stakes (1400m) at Morphettville.

Trainer Mick Price is now more confident of Spacecraft’s chances in the 2010 Caulfield Cup on October 16, Spacecraft currently a $34 chance at Ladbrokes.com.au.

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