Can Lights Of Heaven Switch on For Moody in Melbourne Cup 2012?

This Tuesday Victoria’s leading trainer Peter Moody will be dually represented in the 2012 Melbourne Cup field, and while one of his hopefuls is a triple-figure runner, the chances of Lights Of Heaven winning the classic are much higher.

Moody’s hit-and-miss import Voila Ici is a $151 roughie in the markets for the $6.2 million Group 1 Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m) this year, but his in-form Zabeel mare Lights Of Heaven is much higher up the Melbourne Cup odds paying $19.

Lights Of Heaven

Lights Of Heaven represents the ladies in the 2012 Melbourne Cup field

A Group 1 winner as a three-year-old, the now five-year-old Lights Of Heaven has been in excellent form over the past month or so most recently catching the eye when coming within a length and a quarter to finish third to defending Melbourne Cup winner Dunaden in the Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m).

So can she improve on that and go one or two better when she steps up to the 3200m for the first time in Flemington Race 7 at 3:00pm (AEST) on Tuesday?

#19 Lights Of Heaven – Horse Form

  • Barrier: 17
  • Jockey: Luke Nolen
  • Trainer: Peter Moody
  • Owners: Mrs J M Wanless
  • Age: 5YO
  • Gender: Mare
  • Breeding: by Zabeel (NZ) out of Volksraad (GB) mare I’m In Heaven (NZ)
  • Career: 18-6-3-3
  • Win: 33.33%
  • Place: 66.67%
  • Last 6: 110933
  • Prize Money: $1,193,688
  • Track: 2-0-0-0
  • Distance: 0-0-0-0
  • Current 2012 Melbourne Cup: $19

Evidence FOR an Upset Melbourne Cup 2012 Result from Lights Of Heaven

  • Comes off a slashing third to defending Melbourne Cup champ #1 Duanden ($7.50) in the Caulfield Cup
  • Could she have gone closer if she had more distance to catch them?
  • Is a Group 1 winner as a 3YO in the Schweppes Oaks last year
  • Dual Cups winner having taken out the Eagle Farm – Brisbane Cup double during the winter
  • She may not have raced over the two miles yet but the breeding suggests Lights Of Heaven can get the distance
  • Five-year-olds boast the best record of any age group in the cup with 44 wins, the most recent of which was Viewed (2008)
  • She may be the only mare in this year’s Melbourne Cup field but recent history is in favour of mares who have won five of the past Melbourne Cups – although that figure is inflated by Makybe Diva’s three straight wins (2003-05)

Evidence AGAINST Lights Of Heaven Winning the 2012 Melbourne Cup

  • Has drawn wide in barrier 17 and will have to be at her best from that gate as only four Melbourne Cup winners have jumped from gate 17 – the most recent of which was At Talaq (1986)
  • Faces a really tough field of internationally-trained and bred stars including last year’s Melbourne Cup Quinella of Duanden and Red Cadeaux
  • Neither trainer Peter Moody nor jockey Luke Nolen has won a Melbourne Cup before
  • Nolen has had six Melbourne Cup rides for one second Maluckyday (2010) and was aboard Shamrocker (21st) last year
  • Has had two starts at the Flemington track but failed to finish in the money, most recently was her dead last finish in the Mackinnon Stakes last spring

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