Harris Tweed Turns up at Trial Before Melbourne Cup 2011 Bid

August 4, 2011

Harris Tweed Turns up at Trial Before Melbourne Cup 2011 Bid

Runner-up in the Caulfield Cup last Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival, the Murray Baker-trained New Zealand stayer Harris Tweed has surprised connections with a solid barrier trial back home ahead of their 2011 Melbourne Cup crusade.

Six-year-old Montjeu gelding Harris Tweed ran just two lengths away third behind stablemate and fellow Melbourne-bound Lion Tamer in a 1200 metre, 10-horse open trial on Tuesday at Whakatane’s Te Teko track, an effort that Baker was pleased and amazed with.

“He rather surprised us all to get third because he’s never shown up in trials in his life,” Baker said.

“He pulled up very well.”

Harris Tweed has only recently returned to work at Baker’s Cambridge base after undergoing a wind operation to improve his breathing.

“He had a wind operation in the autumn, the same as (dual Cox Plate winner) So You Think did,” Baker explained.

“He seems to have come back good as gold.”

Not to be mistaken with their European counterpart by the same name, Harris Tweed was one of the 236 horses among the 2011 Caulfield Cup nominations this year with Baker also to nominate them for the Melbourne Cup 2011 when entries for Australia’s richest race close on September 1.

The horse is no stranger to the Australian racing scene, or elite level company.

In fact, Harris Tweed has run 12 of his 27 career starts to date on Australian turf.

Their debut campaign down under was in the autumn of 2009, where they won the Group 2 Myer Tulloch Stakes (2000m) at Rosehill in their first ever run outside of New Zealand before finishing a close second to Roman Emperor in the 2009 AJ Australian Derby.

They returned in the spring of that year for their first Caulfield Cup – Melbourne Cup campaign, finishing 10th (to Viewed) and fifth (to Shocking) respectively in the iconic Spring Cups.

Last year Harris Tweed was over for both the Sydney Autumn Carnival and the Melbourne Spring Carnival, achievements on our tracks including a game third to Jessicabeel in the Group 1 Sydney Cup (3200m), a win in the Listed Bart Cummings Quality (2500m) at Flemington in early October and coming within one length when second to last year’s Caulfield Cup winner Descarado on a Heavy Caulfield track.

Harris Tweed’s spring campaign culminated with a brave fifth, beaten just over five lengths by Americain in the 150th Melbourne Cup.

Before undergoing their throat operation, Harris Tweed had one run in February back home at Otaki but they failed to beat home any other runners when last to the James McDonald-ridden mare Keep The Peace in the Group 1 Hanunui Farm Classic (1600m).

Their performance in the trials on Tuesday, however, showed Baker that the operation had been a success and that glory in either the $2.5 million Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) on October 15 or even possibly the $6 million Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington on November 1 was more than just a pipe dream.

“He’s not making any noise in his work, so I am hopeful he will have a good campaign,” Baker said.

Baker confirmed that Harris Tweed would travel to Melbourne along with 2011 Cox Plate and fellow Spring Cups hopeful Lion Tamer, winner of the 2010 Victoria Derby.

Lion Tamer is a likely first-up starter in the $200,000 Group 2 Memsie Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield Racecourse on August 27, and Baker said there was a nice race on the same day there for Harris Tweed to resume in as well.

That race is the $100,000 Listed Heatherlie Handicap (1700m), which was last year’ registered as the D’Urban Quality Stakes and won by Moudre.

Harris Tweed is currently rated an $81 roughie in the futures Melbourne Cup betting markets lead by defending champion Americain, last year’s runner-up Maluckyday and Australian Guineas – AJC Derby winner Shamrocker who are all installed as equal $13 favourites.

To check out the full 2011 Melbourne Cup odds and to get the best prices on all your horse racing wagers from a midweek meet to the spring carnival, visit Luxbet.

Don’t have an online betting account? Join thousands of happy punters by signing up with the Tabcorp-owned and trusted Luxbet today and quote the promo code BONUSBET to get your first deposit matched dollar for dollar as a bonus bet up to $400!

Racing fields and data are copyright 2011-2018 © Racing Australia Pty Ltd (RA) (and other parties working with it).
Racing materials, including fields, form and results, is subject to copyright which is owned by RA and other parties working with it. Full copyright notice.

Spring Racing

Rogerson Dreams of 2018 Melbou...

The Everest 2018 Field to Feat...

The Everest 2018 Field to Feature Redzel

Inaugural champion Redzel has officially secured his position in the 2018 The...

2018 The Everest Field Takes S...

2018 The Everest Field Takes Shape: In Her Time Confirmed

She missed out on a shot at the world’s richest race on turf last spring but...

Trapeze Artist Secures 2018 Th...

Trapeze Artist Secures 2018 The Everest Slot for Aquis

The first official slot in The Everest 2018 field has been confirmed with...

El Dorado Dreaming of 2018 VRC...

El Dorado Dreaming of 2018 VRC Oaks Bid

Ben Smith’s ATC Sires’ Produce Stakes winning filly El Dorado Dreaming is in...

Horse Racing Today

2018 Kingsford-Smith Cup Betti...

2018 Queensland Oaks Betting U...

2018 Queensland Oaks Betting Update

The Chris Waller domination of the 2018 Queensland Winter Racing Carnival will...

Baker snug about Champagne Cud...

Baker snug about Champagne Cuddles chances in 2018 Kingsford-Smith Cup

Trainer Bjorn Baker is snug about the chances of his three year old filly...

Capacity field of 16 for 2018 ...

Capacity field of 16 for 2018 Queensland Oaks: Waller has 5

A capacity field of sixteen fillies will line up in the 2018 Group 1 $500,000...

A win by English in 2018 Kings...

A win by English in 2018 Kingsford-Smith Cup could secure an Everest slot

Doomben 10,000 winner English could be racing for a slot in the 2018 The...

Race Results

Viewed Victorious in Caulfield Cup

Race 1 Result – $101 500 AGL Renewable Energy Stakes – She’s Got Gears Wins

Race 2 – $101,500 Schiavello Plate – Avienus Wins

Race 3 – $101 500 Lavazza A Modo Mio – Linton Street Wins

Race 4 Results – $151,500 Listed Herald Sun Stakes – Strawberry Field Wins

Race Previews

2009 Caulfield Cup Barrier Draw Announced

Who Are the Top Contenders for Tomorrow’s Caulfield Cup?

Victoria Derby in sight for Onemorenomore

2009 Melbourne Cup Field

Eclipse Stakes Final Field & Preview

Fields & Form

Can Kelinni Win Sydney Cup 2013 for the Punters?

Moroney Gets into Queensland Derby 2013 Rhythm

Buffering Draws 7 – 2013 BTC Cup Final Field and Barrier Draw

SA Fillies Classic 2013 Field Released

13 two-year-olds in 2013 Champagne Classic Field