Last year’s Golden Rose winner Toorak Toff has been assigned an eleventh-hour 2011 Cox Plate campaign, the Rick Hore-Lacy-trained galloper the sole late entry taken for the famous Moonee Valley weight-for-age feature.
Original 2011 Cox Plate nominations were taken by Racing Victoria on Tuesday August 2, 189 gallopers entered for the $3 million showdown to run on October 22.
Today late entries closed for the Cox Plate and a number of other Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival features including the $1 million Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) with Racing Victoria taking a total of six belated nominees across four elite level races.
There are now 190 horses heading towards a spot in the 2011 Cox Plate field with connections of Show A Heart four-year-old Toorak Toff paying the $3,300 late entry fee.
Having shown early promise during their opening two preparations Toorak Toff set themselves up as a genuine stallion prospect winning a number of stakes races, most famous of which was the Group 1 Golden Rose (1400m) in August last year.
After running a game fourth behind the Peter Moody-trained Anacheeva in last year’s Caulfield Guineas, Toorak Toff has recently failed to perform at the same level.
Their most recent run was in the Group 1 The Goodwood (1200m) at Morphettville back in May, Toorak Toff finishing a horrid 10 lengths away 17th to Lone Rock after suffering what Hore-Lacy called “travel sickness”.
Still, Hore-Lacy has seen enough in Toorak Toff’s work leading up to the spring to warrant their late entry into the Cox Plate.
Toorak Toff has been back in work since June and as well as the Cox Plate, Hore-Lacy indicated that the $350,000 Group 1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on September 24 looked a nice race for him.
“He would get a bit of weight in that race but it would be all right for him,” he said.
There is one final chance for horses to be entered for the Cox Plate, final late entries taken on Monday 17 October attracting a hefty fee of $130,000.
Cox Plate betting is already open at the online bookmakers with the now European-based star So You Think and Whobegotyou, who resumes in Saturday’s PB Lawrence Stakes at Caulfield, installed as the $10 co-favourites.
Dual Cox Plate winner So You Think is looking more like a possible runner in this year’s edition with Racing Victoria saying they were optimistic about coming to a solution over quarantine issues for trainer Aidan O’Brien.
“There’s still just a couple of issues to be worked around with the situation that some things (stables) are just too close (at Ballydoyle) but as with Newmarket they were able to be overcome and we remain hopeful of doing so again,” Racing Victoria’s chief executive Rob Hines said yesterday.
Toorak Toff will be added to the Cox Plate odds shortly, so get ready now by opening your account with Australia’s favourite bookmaker Luxbet.