This Saturday in Brisbane Sydney’s premier trainer Kiwi expat Chris Waller will shoot for a record equaling third Doomben Cup win saddling up Junoob and Moriarty in the 2014 edition.
Just two horsemen have won three Doomben Cups and Waller gets the unique chance to join him this weekend.
Racing Hall of Famer John Wheeler who won with Rough Habit (1991-1993) to join the late great Tommy Smith who prepared three Doomben Cup winners over the years with Lord Nelson (1973), Cheyne Walk (1976) and finally Marceau (1978).
Waller meanwhile won the race for the first time in 2010 with Metal Bender before import Beaten Up took it out last Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival defeating stable mate Foreteller.
This year’s $500,000 Group 1 Titan Energy Services Doomben Cup (2000m) features a field of 10 hopefuls, two of which represent Waller.
Current Doomben Cup odds are led by Hollindale Stakes winner Streama ($4.20) for Guy Walter and the Hawkes-trained Leebaz ($4.60) coming off a Hawkesbury Gold Cup success from two weeks back.
The best fancied of Waller’s 2014 Doomben Cup duo meanwhile is Haafhd six-year-old Junoob ($6) who won two on the trot in Sydney before their fourth in the Group 2 AD Hollindale Stakes (1400m) at the Gold Coast on May 3.
After taking out the Randwick City Stakes – Sellwood Stakes double, both run over 2000m at Rosehill and Randwick respectively, Junoob was two lengths off Streama in the Hollindale.
He handled a Heavy rated track for the Group 3 Sellwood but didn’t let down on the same rating in Queensland, something Waller is hoping they can atone for when they go back up in distance on firmer ground this weekend.
Reigning Brisbane Cup winner Moriarty meanwhile pays $11 to score an upset Doomben Cup result, Malaysian-bound Craig Newitt’s mount drawn in barrier seven.
The Clodovil six-year-old also comes via the Hollindale having run fifth just a nose further back than Junoob, both runners expected to improve in the Doomben Cup rematch which will be the likely swansong race for both veteran stayers.
“Realistically we won’t determine the future for either horse until after the Doomben Cup,” Waller’s racing manager Liam Prior told AAP.
“They both raced in the Sydney autumn on heavy tracks and have been up for a while.”
Prior also said that while the stable was happy with their Hollindale runs, they would both also be better suited to a drier track on the weekend.
“While their runs on the heavy track at the Coast were good, we obviously would prefer it drier,” he said
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