Connections of South Australian stayer Gris Caro are sweating on a vet check this afternoon to see if the galloper is passed fit to run in Saturday’s Caulfield Cup 2014, but what are his chances of winning if he does line-up?
There are 18 starters plus four emergencies waiting making up this year’s $3 million Group 1 Crown Golden Ale Caulfield Cup (2400m) including #18 Gris Caro.
The Jake Stephens-trained six-year-old narrowly made the cut racing his way to a ballot exemption into the world’s richest mile and a half handicap with his victory in the Group 3 Naturalism Stakes (2000m) in his Caulfield debut on September 20.
Last time out however the With Approval stallion failed to make an impression in Group 1 company when running nearly six lengths away 12th in the Turnbull Stakes (2000m) at Flemington.
The Turnbull Stakes, which last year’s Caulfield Cup winner Fawkner ran third in in the lead-up last spring, was won by the Kris Lees-trained mare Lucia Valentina.
She now sits top of the Caulfield Cup odds at Ladbrokes.com.au paying $4.60 to secure her third Group 1 victory.
Gris Caro meanwhile is a $31 outsider in Caulfield Cup betting after his disappointing run, having jarred up during the run and pulled up sore.
Because of this he needs to pass a fitness test by Racing Victoria stewards at Flemington, something Stephens desperately hopes he does as the Victor Harbor horseman looks to atone for a Caulfield Cup second with Alcopop behind Dunaden two years ago.
It isn’t looking good at this stage however as Stephens advised stewards on Thursday morning that the horse was a “highly unlikely” starter.
If Gris Caro comes out the Peter Moody-trained Brambles will get a run as the first emergency joining Lidari for the stable, the pair having run third and second respectively in the Turnbull Stakes last time out.
But if Gris Caro passes the vet test and lines up from barrier three with ‘The Magic Man’ Joao Moreira in the saddle, can he score an upset Caulfield Cup result?
Caulfield Cup Horse Form: #18 Gris Cargo
- Barrier: 3 (into 2)
- Weight: 52kg
- Jockey: Joao Moreira
- Trainer: Jake Stephens
- Owners: Mr J A Stephens, Mr W J Duthy, Mr P Mackie, Go Dougie, Mr M J Symons, Mr S J Waters, Hunkie Racing, Mr J M Doyle, Mr T Lillis, Mr J Moase-Harris, Ms A Kelton, Mr D C Doyle, R Jays, Mr G P Harris, How Simple, Miss P M Palmer, Mr C Pearson, Father & Son Racing, Mr B D Clark, Mr P Kelton
- Age: 6YO
- Gender: Stallion
- Breeding: by With Approval from Aviane
- Career: 17-6-3-3
- Win: 35%
- Place: 71%
- Last 6: 8×6710
- Prize Money: $299,048
- Track: 1-1-0-0
- Distance: 1-0-0-1
- Current 2014 Caulfield Cup Odds: $31
Why Gris Caro Can Score an Upset 2014 Caulfield Cup Result
- Has drawn a nice inside barrier three which will become two if the last emergency #22e Renew (2) fails to gain a start
- Barrier three last produced a Caulfield Cup winner in Southern Speed (2011) while the last champion from gate two was Tawqeet (2006)
- Gets in on the 52kg minimum and light weight hopes have run well in recent years with both Southern Speed (2011) and Descarado (2010) saluting with 52.5kg
- Hong Kong-based Brazilian superstar Joaoa Moreira rides after winning two Group 1 races in Sydney recently back down under
- Stephens ran second in 2012 with Alcopop and is keen to atone and go one better
- Won his only other start at the track two back
Why Gris Caro Won’t Win the 2014 Caulfield Cup
- Might not actually run needs to pass the vet test and Stephens isn’t confident
- Even if he passes there’s still the cloud of doubt over whether he is at his best after pulling up sore post-Turnbull Stakes
- He was well beaten in the Turnbull Stakes (12th) by a host of the same rivals he faces this weekend including the winner and Saturday’s favourite #15 Lucia Valentina ($4.60)
- Has had just the one run over the distance
While Gris Caro is likely to be scratched from the Caulfield Cup field there’s an off chance he’ll surprise and make the cut so at $31 why not try a sneaky bet, money refunded if he’s scratched out at Ladbrokes.com.au!