This Saturday in Melbourne Lucia Valentina will look to become just the third favourite in 11 years to salute for the punters in the 2014 Caulfield Cup, but is history on her side to defeat the hoodoo?
The four-year-old daughter of Savabeel is at a firming price of $4.40 through Ladbrokes.com.au to take out this year’s $3 million Group 1 Crown Golden Ale Caulfield Cup (2400m).
In doing so she will celebrate her third Group 1 win and become the first favourite since Master O’Reilly (8/1 in 2007) to win.
Last time out on October 4 she beat home the Peter Moody-trained stable mates Lidari and Brambles to win the Group 1 Turnbull Stakes (2000m), good form as that’s the race last year’s Caulfield Cup winner Fawkner ran third in in the lead-up.
In Tuesday afternoon’s Caulfield Cup barrier draw Lucia Valentina drew gate 12 but should come into last year’s winning gate 10 if the emergencies come out.
That’s a great spot where jockey Kerrin McEvoy should be able to get her to settle in the first half of the field, and one that pleased connections including stable rep Mal Ollerton.
“We were hoping for around there so it has worked out very well. All the work is done. We just have to keep her happy and well,” Ollerton said at the draw.
So will McEvoy be able to get the job done on the favourite? Or will the favourites’ hoodoo strike again and see Lucia Valentina beaten on Caulfield Cup Day?
Caulfield Cup Horse Form: #15 Lucia Valentina
- Barrier: 12 (possibly into 10)
- Weight: 53kg
- Jockey: Kerrin McEvoy
- Trainer: Kris Lees
- Owners: Mr L Petagna
- Age: 4YO
- Gender: Mare
- Breeding: by Savabeel form Staryn Glenn
- Career: 12-5-1-2
- Win: 42%
- Place: 67%
- Last 6: 13×161
- Prize Money: $829,095
- Track: 0-0-0-0
- Distance: 1-0-0-1
- Current 2014 Caulfield Cup Odds: $4.40
Why Lucia Valentina Can Win the 2014 Caulfield Cup
- She’s likely to jump from barrier 10 which produced last year’s winner Fawkner as well as two other Caulfield Cup champs since 1983
- Barrier gives jockey Kerrin McEvoy options to get up in the first half with the speed maps showing the backmarkers are likely to struggle in this edition
- Gets in well with the weights on 53kg dropping back half a kilo from last start
- Jockey Kerrin McEvoy stays on having ridden her for all three runs this season for two wins including the Group 1 Turnbull Stakes (2000m) last time out
- She’s a dual Group 1 winner
Turnbull Stakes form holds up in the Caulfield Cup including last year when third placegetter Fawkner went on to win
- Is the right age as four-year-olds have won 16 of the past 31 editions most recently Southern Speed (2011) who was also the last mare to win
- Has the third best Win Rate of the field 42%
- Last start over 2400m produced a Group 1 second in Sydney
Why Lucia Valentina Won’t be the 2014 Caulfield Cup Winner
- Beat Lidari home by half a length last start when he carried 55.5kg but he goes down to 53.5kg for the rematch
- Favourites have only won 2 of the past 10 Caulfield Cups
- Great Place Rate of 67% so could be a better top three than win chance
- Lots of unknown talent in the race including from the Japanese duo Bande ($8) and Admire Rakti ($10)
- She’s yet to race at Caulfield which is a notoriously tricky track
- Has had just one previous run at the distance
Whether you’re backing or sacking Saturday’s Caulfield Cup favourite make sure you get the best odds online at Ladbrokes.com.au where you can also access ‘Favourite v Field’ markets paying $1.10 for any other runner in the field aside from Lucia Valentina to win!