Australian Cup Target for 2015 Cox Plate Hope Mourinho

January 22, 2015

Australian Cup Target for 2015 Cox Plate Hope Mourinho

Daring to dream, Moe-based trainer Peter Gelagotis plans to give his veteran galloper Mourinho a light Australian Cup campaign this autumn before bringing him back for a 2015 Cox Plate bid in the spring.


Australian Cup-bound Mourinho’s main aim in 2015 is the Cox Plate in late October. Photo: Race Horse Photos Australia.

The Oratorio seven-year-old is getting better with age according to Gelagotis who hopes to prove that this year with the gelding to break his Group 1 duck either in the autumn or spring.

“It just seems that’s the way he’s going,” he told RSN’s Racing and Sports program on Thursday morning.

“He’s showing sharper qualities and more composure, that’s the key, more composure in himself.

“Hence he’s able to sprint a little bit better.”

A dual Group 3 winner, Group 2 runner-up and Group 1 performer Mourinho was last seen in the winner’s stall last October taking out the Listed Cranbourne Cup (2025m).

After that he was tested at elite level when seventh when running an honest race getting run down in the final furlong of the Group 1 Mackinnon Stakes (2000m) at Flemington on November 1.

He was narrowly balloted out of Australasia’s weight-for-age championship during last year’s Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival and with any luck Gelagotis will get the horse into this year’s $3 million Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m) field at Moonee Valley in late October.

“We’re mindful that he hasn’t competed at Group 1 level, he’s had only the one run,” he said.

“Our goal, if possible and if the ability allows, to try and have a crack at the Cox Plate.

“You can only live the dream!”

Futures Cox Plate odds are already open at and led by the defending champion Adelaide ($9) while Mourinho is well down the odds at $61.

His autumn meanwhile is focused on the $1 million Group 1 Australian Cup (2000m) running at Flemington Racecourse on March 14.

He resumes this weekend at the Valley running in the $200,000 Group 2 Jeep Australia Stakes (1200m).

“He’s been ticking along really nice,” Gelagotis said.

“He had a jump-out on Monday and showed a lot of flair and a lot of pizazz in his half-mile trial.”

Drawn in barrier five of nine the always-honest warhorse has Vlad Duric aboard for the first time, Duric having ridden him for some work being left with a good impression during his winter – spring break last year.

Australia Stakes betting markets for the weekend are led by the now odds-on favourite Dissident, in from $2 to $1.95, with Mourinho a $34 outsider in betting.

He runs well fresh however and Gelagotis is confident the distance won’t be too short, the horse showing ability over sprints during this latter part of his career.

“We thought it would be more beneficial to get a little short race under his belt three weeks before the mile then he’s a chance to earn some prize money while gaining fitness,” he said.

“He can rattle off a rally good race fresh now.

“In previous campaigns he didn’t do that, he’d crash and burn a little bit.

“He seems to be a bit more furnished and a bit more seasoned.

“He’s putting it together over shorter distances which he probably couldn’t do in the past.”

Mourino’s top record at Moonee Valley of four wins, two seconds and a third from 10 starts was also a deciding factor in racing him in the Australia Stakes.

“That was a key factor in saying we were going,” Gelagotis said.

“He does love that track and he seems to get around there real good and finds his form really well there.”

After this weekend Gelagotis is eyeing a run in the $150,000 Group 3 Carlyon Cup (1600m) at Caulfield on February 14 followed by the $200,000 Group 2 Peter Young Stakes (1800m) back at the track on February 28.

“Just the traditional Australian Cup preparation,” he said.

“We’ll go to the mile race on the 14th of February then a fortnight later the Peter Young then a run int the Austraina Cup.

“That will be his campaign for the autumn and he’ll come back and follow a similar path to see if we can get into the Cox Plate.

“Hopefully we can place in a Group 1 and can qualify the Cox Plate next time in.

“If he can win the Dato that will get us in.

“He’s taken the next step and he needs to take another step.

“But he’s very progressive. He’s not showing his age in any way, he’s actually getting better so we’ll strike while the iron’s hot.”

Whether it is the Moonee Valley races this Saturday, the upcoming Autumn Group 1s or the Cox Plate futures you’re wanting to bet on make sure you do so online at who are matching first depositing customer’s investments up to $250 with use of the promo code BETBONUS!

Racing fields and data are copyright 2011-2018 © Racing Australia Pty Ltd (RA) (and other parties working with it).
Racing materials, including fields, form and results, is subject to copyright which is owned by RA and other parties working with it. Full copyright notice.

Spring Racing

Trapeze Artist Secures 2018 Th...

El Dorado Dreaming of 2018 VRC...

El Dorado Dreaming of 2018 VRC Oaks Bid

Ben Smith’s ATC Sires’ Produce Stakes winning filly El Dorado Dreaming is in...

In Her Time Targets 2018 The E...

In Her Time Targets 2018 The Everest After Brisbane Winter

It is shaping-up as a huge year for Benjamin Smith’s class mare In Her Time...

All Aged to The Everest 2018 f...

All Aged to The Everest 2018 for Trapeze Artist

The world’s richest race on turf, the 2018 The Everest, will be firmly on the...

2018 TJ Smith Stakes Grand Fin...

2018 TJ Smith Stakes Grand Final for The Everest Bound Redzel

Inaugural The Everest champion Redzel has been specifically set for an autumn...

Horse Racing Today

Victorian filly So Far Sokool ...

Gai’s 2 head the list of...

Gai’s 2 head the list of nominations for the 2018 Japan Racing Association Plate

The Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott trained Ecuador and Arbeitsam head up the...

Single Gaze looking to the fut...

Single Gaze looking to the future as a brood mare, out of 2018 Sydney Cup

Group 1 winning mare Single Gaze will begin preparations for the upcoming...

Savvy Coup looking for another...

Savvy Coup looking for another Kiwi win in 2018 Australian Oaks

Savvy Coup will be trying to keep the Kiwi fillies strong winning record...

Oliver back aboard Almandin in...

Oliver back aboard Almandin in 2018 Sydney Cup

Damien Oliver has found himself back on Melbourne Cup winner Almandin who is...

Race Results

Viewed Victorious in Caulfield Cup

Race 1 Result – $101 500 AGL Renewable Energy Stakes – She’s Got Gears Wins

Race 2 – $101,500 Schiavello Plate – Avienus Wins

Race 3 – $101 500 Lavazza A Modo Mio – Linton Street Wins

Race 4 Results – $151,500 Listed Herald Sun Stakes – Strawberry Field Wins

Race Previews

2009 Caulfield Cup Barrier Draw Announced

Who Are the Top Contenders for Tomorrow’s Caulfield Cup?

Victoria Derby in sight for Onemorenomore

2009 Melbourne Cup Field

Eclipse Stakes Final Field & Preview

Fields & Form

Can Kelinni Win Sydney Cup 2013 for the Punters?

Moroney Gets into Queensland Derby 2013 Rhythm

Buffering Draws 7 – 2013 BTC Cup Final Field and Barrier Draw

SA Fillies Classic 2013 Field Released

13 two-year-olds in 2013 Champagne Classic Field