Local Sunshine Coast trainer Darryl Hansen rates his hope in Saturday’s Caloundra Cup 2014 Denwood a far better chance in the feature than their double figure price suggests.
One of 11 remaining gallopers in the $175,000 Listed Ross MacLean Fellowship Caloundra Cup (2400m) following the early scratching of #7 Perfect Start, Denwood pays around $26 to win.
The Caloundra Cup odds are firmly led by Mr O’Ceirin ($2.10), and while there’s a big gap in their prices, Hansen believes Denwood isn’t as far off the favourite as the bookies are making out.
Drawn in barrier four with Sunshine Coast specialist Ryan Wiggins to ride, the Greenwood Lake five-year-old gets in on the 54kg minimum meeting top weight Mr O’Ceirin then five kilos better in the weights.
They are also yet to see the distance, but Hansen is confident they will see out a strong mile and a half no problems.
A winner of just five of their 47 starts to date, the well-tried gelding went up in distance and class last Saturday in the Group 3 Tattersall’s Cup (2200m) at Eagle Farm.
There they finished fifth behind The Inventor in a run full of merit.
Going up from a mile, they handled the 2200m well after a luckless run trapped out three wide.
Brave in defeat Denwood crossed just one and a half lengths off the winner after moving into second with 1200m to go and hanging on in an effort their trainer believes they can improve on even with the short turnaround.
“He jumped from the 1600 to the 2200 last time and with that under his belt I really give him a fair chance over 2400m,” Hansen told rippa.com this week.
“I took him to Sydney as a three-year-old and started him in a Group 3 race (the Gloaming Stakes) and Chris Munce rode him (for a seventh behind Strike The Stars over 1800m) and at the time he said the further he gets over ground, you’ll see a better horse.”
While on paper their seventh in that race was far from encouraging, behind them in eighth was Sangster who went on three starts later to win that year’s Group 1 Victoria Derby (2500m).
Denwood is now looking for their first win in over a year however not having won since June last year, a lengthy drought that Hansen is keen to break.
“I just threw him in the deep end in the Tatt’s Cup and he ran out of his skin. I was very happy,” Hansen said.
“I was waiting to see how he pulled up after the Tatt’s before backing him up but he’s eaten everything and come through the run well.
“The horse has pulled up good, he’s in good order, he’s drawn a good gate and should get a nice run.
“I give him a good to great each-way hope.”
If successful Hansen will be adding to his Black Type Brisbane wins achieved with Vo Heart in the Group 2 Champagne Classic (1200m) last May and Essington in the Listed Ascot Handicap (1200m) three years ago.
Other notable Caloundra Cup hopes this year include last start Ipswich Cup winner Brave Ali ($5) for Brisbane’s form trainer of the carnival Tony Gollan and the horse that ran fourth to them in that same race Ironstein also at $5 to win for Sydney horseman Gerald Ryan.
The full Sunshine Coast racing odds can be found online now at Ladbrokes.com.au who are also offering money back up to $50 as a bonus bet if your first Fixed Win selection on the Caloundra Cup runs second this weekend!