Stephen’s has named the $1 million Group 1 Australian Cup (2000m) at Flemington’s Super Saturday on March 12 as the main autumn assignment for Alcopop this year.
Leading online bookmaker Luxbet currently have Alcopop installed as a $26 chance in their early 2011 Australian Cup odds.
Evergreen nine-year-old Zipping is the favourite at the top of the Australian Cup betting paying $6 at Luxbet.
Six-year-old Jeune gelding Alcopop captured the attention of punters and racing fans everywhere in 2009 when they travelled to Melbourne and won the Listed JRA Cup (2040m) at their first look at the Moonee Valley track by a tidy two lengths.
Alcopop continued on to claim an easy three and a half length victory over Shocking in the Group 2 Herbert Power Stakes (2400m), which has turned out to be their latest win to date.
Soaring to the top of the Melbourne Cup odds for 2009, Alcopop was only able to finish sixth behind Shocking.
Last year Alcopop failed to perform as consistently with a number of disappointing results throughout the year.
Their second place finish behind superstar So You Think in the Group 1 Yalumba Stakes (2000m) at Caulfield back in October was Alcopop’s only good run, and even there he was beaten by over three lengths.
In his last start he finished over 29 lengths away from eventual Melbourne Cup runner-up Maluckyday in the Group 3 The Lexus Stakes (2500m) on Derby Day plagued by a virus before being spelled.
Showing promise to return to his previous winning form, Alcopop won a barrier trial on January 28 at Murray Bridge and will have his first-up run in the $50,000 Allan Scott Park Morphettville Flying Handicap (1200m) on Saturday.
In a blow for the runner Alcopop has been allocated a hefty 62kg for Saturday’s race, a full 5.5kg heavier than the next top weighted entry Midnight Mustang.
However, Alcopop is due to be ridden by apprentice Jacob Rule allowing for a 3kg claim.
A number of the other top runners heading towards the 2011 Australian Cup will make their season debuts in the Group 1 CF Orr Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on February 12 including David Hayes’ European import Rebel Soldier and defending Australian Cup champion Zipping.
Photo courtesy (c) Taron Clarke Photography