Progressive stayer Laidback Larry remains favourite in 2014 Mornington Cup Prelude betting markets, but there has been plenty of support for imported galloper He’s Your Man to record his first race win since arriving in Australia.
Trainer Gai Waterhouse believes that Laidback Larry ($2.20) is good enough to contest the Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) during the 2014 Spring Racing Carnival and he has been well-backed to record his fourth straight win in the Listed event this weekend.
Laidback Larry started his summer campaign with a victory at Canterbury on December 18 and took out the Australian Turf Club Handicap (1600m) at Royal Randwick on New Year’s Day by a dominant five and a half lengths before recording another impressive win in the TAB Rewards Handicap (2000m) at the same venue on January 18.
According to punters the biggest challenge to Laidback Larry in the Mornington Cup Prelude is expected to come from Chris Waller-trained He’s Your Man, who is now into odds of $4.80.
He’s Your Man was a group level performer in Europe and has impressed in his two race starts since arriving in Australia; finishing second in the George Watson Handicap (1400m) at Flemington on New Year’s Day and third in the Craftsman Handicap (1720m) at the same venue on January 18.
The Cape Cross entire is expected to relish the step-up to 2000 metres and, like Laidback Larry, is on track to contest the Mornington Cup.
Consistent stayer Prince Of Penzance ($4.80) is on the third line of 2014 Mornington Cup Prelude betting markets and is another horse that will appreciate the step back up in distance.
Prince Of Penzance was caught wide when he finished seventh behind Sistine Demon in the Western Health Handicap (1410m) at Flemington on December 14, but returned to his best form with a comfortable win over a mile at Moonee Valley on December 28.
The Pentire gelding missed the start in the Craftsman Handicap at Flemington, but flew home late from the back of the field to finish second behind Eraset.
A trip to Tasmania could be on the agenda for Prince Of Penzance; with trainer Darren Weir including the four-year-old in the entries for both the Group 3 Hobart Cup (2400m) on February 9 and the Group 3 Launceston Cup (2400m) on February 26.
The three leading contenders dominate 2014 Mornington Cup Prelude betting markets; with Epingle the next best backed runner at $11.
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