Helenus gelding Cedarberg was not fancied in the lead-up to the 2011 The BMW with all the money and attention on big name runners including last year’s Melbourne Cup second placegetter Maluckyday who went out as the favourite.
Cedarberg, however, proved his potential in the Group 1 arena in a nice win for jockey Damien Oliver and owners the Wyadup Valley Farm Syndicate.
While the bookies didn’t rate him, Carey did.
“You train you horses to win,” he said.
And win he did.
With many of the top fancies going out too wide, Oliver kept Cedarberg a lot closer to the rails, shaving the corner for the winning shortcut.
A $20 roughie in The BMW betting, Cedarberg was able to run down the early leaders for the win.
“Once they opened up he sprinted through really quickly,” Oliver said after the race.
The Robert Hickmott-trained Mourayan took the lead with 1800m to go from Zavite and took them into the turn before being overtaken by Cedarberg with 200m to go.
On the line it was Cedarberg 1 ¼ lengths ahead of Mourayan with the fellow Lloyd Williams-owned stayer Linton in a brave third just a neck further back from his stablemate.
Short priced favourite Maluckyday came out awkwardly from the barriers and fell too far behind to make up the ground while the other top pick for punters, Gai Waterhouse’s Caulfield Cup winner Descarado was never in the race.
Cedarberg, purchased for just $32,000 at the Perth Magic Millions Yearling Sale, took his record to four wins from 15 starts today the first prize boosting his career earnings to nearly $1.5 million.
“I’ve always admired the horse and wanted to get on him,” Oliver said of today’s winner.
“I chased Pat for the ride and got on him at the right time.”
While the $500,000 Group 1 Sydney Cup (3200m) at Randwick on April 23 is a tempting possibility for Cedarberg who would be a 51kg lightweight, trainer Carey said they probably would not go there.
The logical step for this stayer in the spring would be the Caulfield and Melbourne Cups.
Although Cedarberg didn’t get to the major Cups last season, he is looking on track for them this year.