British stayer Red Cadeaux is well-versed in Australian racing, having made the trip out for the last four (including this year) Group 1 Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m).
For the first time, the gelding’s connections are considering testing him in a race that isn’t ‘the race that stops the nation’. Trainer Ed Dunlop revealed he would like to return the international campaigner to Australian soil during the autumn.
Dunlop, who was at Werribee on Friday to oversee the veteran stayer’s final gallop ahead of his fourth tilt in the $6.2 million Melbourne Cup, said he would consider both Melbourne and Sydney races for the nine-year-old during the 2015 autumn racing season.
“I’d like to bring him back here again for The Championships in Sydney with a lead-up run in the Australian Cup (2000m) at Flemington,” Dunlop told Racing Victoria.
“It just depends on the quarantine situation and whether it is possible but it’s a lot easier to travel horses these days so he could go back to England in between if we wanted to.”
Red Cadeaux is searching for his first Melbourne Cup victory after making the journey out the last three years in a row. The gelding was a close runner-up in both 2011 and 2013, either side of an unplaced effort in 2012.
Dunlop is pleased with his eight-year-old’s condition ahead of the 2014 Melbourne Cup. The trainer doesn’t believe the race appears as strong on paper as previous editions, which could mean it’s finally Red Cadeaux’s time to win despite finishing last in the Group 3 September Stakes (2414m) last time out.
“It appears very much a narrower race,” he said.
“Fiorente was a supremely impressive winner, no doubt the best horse won the race last year and on ratings we probably ran the best race of our life at eight years of age but he’s nine this year and it’s a question of can he do it again?
“He ran a clunker the last time he ran in England but he did that in Ireland the year before so I think we can put a line through that.”
The trainer has learned a lot from his previous three attempts, which will only advantage him on Tuesday.
“I’d be amazed if there were many other horses that come from Europe to run in four Melbourne Cups in-a-row, it’s a pretty major feat for the horse,” he said.
“I learned a lot from year two (2012) when we were stuck out the back.
“Year one (2011) we were out the back in a truly run race and we ran on and didn’t win by two pixels.
“Year two we did the same thing in a slowly run race and never got involved. Year three (2013) we went forward and that was the pattern we learned.”
Red Cadeaux is a $17 shot in the 2014 Melbourne Cup betting market at Ladbrokes.com.au, led by Admire Rakti at $4.80.
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