Classy Kiwi galloper Harris Tweed is reportedly fit and back on track for a tilt at the 2010 Melbourne Cup on Tuesday November 2 after overcoming a bout of colic that threatened his chance of running in the world’s richest handicap for a second year in a row.
The talented five-year-old Montjeu gelding was one of 47 horses paid up for at the Melbourne Cup third declaration stage yesterday, shortening into a $26 chance to win the 150th edition of the famous Flemington feature through Luxbet.
However connections of the Caulfield Cup runner-up had a scare last week when Harris Tweed suffered a colic attack on Saturday night.
Trainers Murray and Bjorn Baker have since advised Victorian stewards that Harris Tweed, fifth placegetter behind Shocking in the 2009 Melbourne Cup, has fully recovered.
“He hasn’t missed any work and galloped on Sunday and Monday,” co-trainer Bjorn Baker said.
Harris Tweed is a stayer that obviously prefers a softer ground.
He finished a well-beaten eighth in the Naturalism Stakes (2000m) at Caulfield on a Good track in September, then improved with a victory at Flemington over 2500m on a track rated Dead.
This proved a telling lead-up to his gallant Caulfield Cup run last-start, where the Heavy track conditions suited Harris Tweed and he finished the Caulfield Cup runner-up to Descarado.
Unlike a number of other Melbourne Cup hopefuls, Harris Tweed will not have a final hit-out at Victoria Derby Day on Saturday.
“He’s right where we want him and goes straight into the Cup,” Baker explained.
If there is rain about in Victoria leading up to the Melbourne Cup Tuesday week, Harris Tweed becomes one of the best chances.
“Some rain would be nice, but he goes well on the dry as well,” said Baker.
Obviously now is the best time to jump on the juicy odds available on the Melbourne Cup entries with prices set to shorten following the 2010 Melbourne Cup Field and Barrier draw at Flemington following the nine-race Derby Day card.
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