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After a nice win at Geelong on Cup Day on Wednesday connections of the Robbie Laing-trained galloper Don Doremo believe him a genuine hope for the ‘race that stops the nation’ despite what the 2014 Melbourne Cup odds say.
The Cranbourne-based Don Edurado four-year-old was one of 72 first acceptors taken at the start of the month for this year’s $6.2 million Group 1 Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington on Tuesday November 4.
The lightly-raced gelding however sits as a $201 outsider in the latest Melbourne Cup betting markets at Ladbrokes.com.au that are led by last Saturday’s Caulfield Cup winning Japanese raider Admire Rakti ($4.80).
Despite the long price to win the world’s richest handicap Don Doremo’s owner, Shergar Thoroughbreds manger Brendan Tohill, rates him a definite hope and the only horse longer than $50 in the markets that has a real chance of scoring an upset Melbourne Cup result.
“He’s the only horse outside 50-to-1 that can win the Melbourne Cup,” Tohill told Racing Victoria on Wednesday.
Tohill is also already getting excited about the autumn next year and the Group 1 Sydney Cup (2400m) in April 2015 for the up-and-comer.
“He did a lot of work early there but next season, phoa, Sydney Cup,” Tohill said.
Don Doremo has been tested in black type company just once before when on September 13 he ran in the Group 1 Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m) at Flemington.
It was a disastrous effort however as he weakened badly on the straight and was simply outclassed by a field of better horses crossing dead last nearly 11 lengths off the winner Dissident.
Since then he’s run top three in all three of his starts back down in Benchmark 70 – 78 level including yesterday’s $30,000 Marks Square Shopping Centre Benchmark 78 (2400m) at Geelong.
Jumping from barrier 10 of 12 with Vlad Duric in the saddle, the stayer showed a definite liking for the extra metres beating home Clear Direction by a length.
It was the horse’s first look at the distance and indicated to Tohill that Don Doremo could be suited to the two miles of the iconic Melbourne Cup.
In an attempt to get him into the 24-starter Melbourne Cup field, Don Doremo currently sitting equal 65th on the order of entry with only 50kg, Tohill confirmed his next assignment as the $250,000 Group 3 Lexus Stakes (2500m) at Flemington on Victoria Derby Day.
Held on the Saturday before the Melbourne Cup the Lexus is the last chance for stayers to earn a Cup exemption and penalty.
“We’ll look at the Lexus, this horse has a lot of scope,” Tohill said.
Trainer Laing added that if they missed out on a Melbourne Cup bid then they would still run on Melbourne Cup Day in the $100,000 Victoria Plate (2800m).
“He did a bit of work early and toughed-it-out really well and first time at the trip,” Laing said of Don Doremo’s run.
“He’s all legs and head, he’s got a young two-year-old’s brain that gets fired-up and hot and bothered but when he settles down he’ll be a nice horse; he’s a promising horse.”
The post-race report from jockey Duric meanwhile indicated that the Melbourne Cup was likely out of his reach and that the easier non-stakes race on November 4 would be the better option.
“When I asked him to come off the bridle (coming around the corner) he got a little bit lost,” Duric said.
“But I said that when I rode him at Cranbourne, he’s probably just a raw buggar and he is going to improve with this prep beyond him into his next prep.
“He’s a bold going buggar and gets on the track and just wants to run
“Just if we can harness him and conserve his energy, he’ll make a nice stayer.”
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