It has been over a year between drinks for Jake Stephens’ veteran galloper Alcopop but on Saturday the Adelaide stayer will look to defy their age and finally take out an elusive Group 1 race in the 2012 Caulfield Cup.
The eight-year-old Jeune gelding started one of the top fancies in the spring’s major cup clash, the Melbourne Cup, back in 2009 after they travelled to Victoria and took out the JRA Cup – Herbert Power Stakes double.
It was a fine effort too with Alcopop overcoming interference to run a credible sixth behind Shocking, the last Aussie-trained horse to win the ‘race that stops a nation’.
The next spring was a far cry from their first in Victoria with Alcopop recording a Group 1 second in the Caulfield Stakes in early October before bumming out in their next two runs including a distant 11th behind Descarado after jumping from the extreme outside barrier 18 in the 2010 Caulfield Cup which was run on an unsuitably bog track.
Last year they made their third Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival appearance but were turned out just two runs in after they finished dead last behind the reigning Caulfield Cup winner Descarado in the Caulfield Stakes.
Stephens however is more confident than ever heading into the $2.5 million Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) this year after Alcopop showed they still had a zest for racing when less than a length away second to Cox Plate fancy Ocean Park in the Caulfield Stakes last Saturday.
“That race being a sit and sprint affair didn’t take much out of him,” Stephens said.
“It was great preparation for the Caulfield Cup and I don’t think it’s beyond him winning the race, everything is looking good.”
Stephens was also pleased with Alcopop’s barrier and the weather in Melbourne is looking ideal for the noted dry-tracker.
“I am very happy,” Stephens said of Alcopop’s barrier (9 into 8) for Saturday.
“It’s a bit different to two years ago drawing 22 and the weather is looking good so the track is certainly not going to be a Heavy 10 like it was two years ago.
Alcopop is one of the genuine market movers in the Caulfield Cup odds at bookmaker.com.au having been backed right into $15 from $26, but do they have a genuine claim here?
#15 Alcopop – Horse Facts
- Jockey: Dom Tourneur
- Trainer: Jake Stephens
- Owners: Mr J A Stephens, Mr J P Kelton, Mrs S K Kelton, Ms A Kelton, Mr G D Gillam, Mrs H R Gillam, Mr P Kelton, Mrs A J Mclaren, Mr P Mackie, Ms S Pourbozorgi
- Age: 8YO
- Gender: Gelding
- Breeding: by Jeune (GB) from Blevic (AUS) mare Iota Of Luck (AUS)
- Career: 31-9-4-0
- Win: 29.03%
- Place: 41.94%
- Prize Money: $712,905
- Track: 5-1-2-0
- Distance: 2-1-0-0
- Current 2012 Caulfield Cup Odds: $15
Pros for Backing Alcopop in the Caulfield Cup 2012 Odds
- In their fourth straight Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival campaign so have the experience
- Is reportedly in top form eating up well and ready to go
- Carried 59kg last start and drop back to just 52.5kg on Saturday, the weight last year’s Caulfield Cup winner Southern Speed carried to victory 12 months ago
- 17 of the past 20 Caulfield Cup winners have carried 54.5kg or less
- Caught the eye when a slashing second having come from the back of the field in the Caulfield Stakes last Saturday
- One of the big Caulfield Cup betting market movers in from $26 to $15 since barriers were released on Wednesday
- Drawn into barrier nine but into eight which is ideal position-wise (see con on this fact too)
- Has a credible record at the track (5-1-2-0)
Cons for Backing Alcopop in 2012 Caulfield Cup Betting Markets
- Ran in the 2010 Caulfield Cup and failed from the extreme outside barrier when 11th to Descarado
- Are on a seven day back-up
- Will jump from barrier eight with the emergencies out which is the least successful Caulfield Cup barrier in history
- Would make a better place bet with two seconds and only one victory from five previous runs at Caulfield
- Only has a fair win rate of 29.03%
- Only one eight-year-old has won the Caulfield Cup in the past 80 years with Taufan’s Melody (1998)
Whatever horse in the Caulfield Cup betting markets you fancy a punt on this weekend make sure you get the best price online at bookmaker.com.au – home of the famous $400 bonus welcome bet offer!