Nominations closed for the Group 3 Carlyon Cup (1600m) on Monday morning, with 18 potential horses set to tackle the mile at Caulfield this Saturday.
The Carlyon Cup is one of eight Group races running in Melbourne this weekend, headlined by the Group 1 CF Orr Stakes (1400m).
A number of horses have found themselves dually nominated for both races, including Red Excitement, Smokin’ Joey, Mourinho, and Real Love.
Gerald Ryan’s Red Excitement spent the majority of 2014 on the sidelines after suffering a tendon injury in February. Yet after ten months in rehabilitation, he returned to the track stronger than ever to win the Drummond Golf Handicap (1400m) on December 20 before nabbing his first black-type race win in the Listed Chester Manifold Stakes (1400m) on January 17.
Smokin’ Joey is the headliner of the Carlyon Cup field despite a luckless spring/summer campaign. The seven-year-old gelding finished outside the placings in all four of his Melbourne tilts during October and November so trainer Wez Hunter opted to take him west to Perth for the Summer Racing Carnival. He was tipped to perform well in the Group 1 Kingston Town Classic (1800m) but once again missed out on a placing by just one spot.
On his return to Melbourne, Smokin’ Joey took on the likes of Dissident in the Group 2 Australia Stakes (1200m), finishing just a head off from third place.
Mourinho was the surprise winner of the Australia Stakes and the pair could go head-to-head once more. The gelding last ran over the mile in September, finishing runner-up to The Cleaner in the Group 2 Dato Tan Chin Nam Stakes (1600m).
Adam Durrant’s Real Love will make the trek to Melbourne from Perth for the first time after a successful summer that saw the mare finish in the first two in all five of her tilts, which included winning the Group 2 Perth Cup (2400m) on January 1.
The 2015 Carlyon Cup could see the return of many successful milers from the spring, including Big Memory. After winning the Group 2 Herbert Power Stakes (2400m) in October, trainer Tony McEvoy decided to push his gelding towards the Melbourne Cup. However after missing out on victory in the Group 3 Lexus Stakes (2500m) to Signoff, he just missed out on a place in the final field.
Big Memory ended his spring season with a minor placing in the Group 3 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2600m) on November 8.
Other notable horses nominated for the Carlyon Cup include Group 1 Queensland Derby (2400m) winner Sonntag, Group 1 Turnbull Stakes (2000m) runner-up Lidari, $400,000 Magic Millions Cup (1400m) winner Spurtonic, Ken Keys’ Bring Something, and Akzar.
The Carlyon Cup field and barrier draw will be released Wednesday morning. In the meantime, open your Ladbrokes.com.au betting accounts to get a head start on the autumn.
New customers will receive a $250 bonus match on their first bet when they quote code: BETBONUS, which is sure to boost your bankroll well into the season.
2015 Carlyon Cup Nominations
|1||SMOKIN’ JOEY||Wez Hunter||1||58.5kg||106|
|4||REAL LOVE||Adam Durrant||4||55.5kg||99|
|5||LIDARI (FR)||Peter G Moody||5||57.5kg||105|
|6||BIG MEMORY (FR)||Tony McEvoy||6||57.5kg||102|
|7||STAR ROLLING||Peter Morgan & Craig Widdison||7||57.5kg||103|
|8||JACQUINOT BAY||David Hayes & Tom Dabernig||8||57kg||103|
|11||BRING SOMETHING||Ken Keys||11||57kg||97|
|12||GAMBLIN’ GURU||Leon Macdonald & Andrew Gluyas||12||57kg||89|
|13||AKZAR (IRE)||Darren Weir||13||56kg||103|
|15||RIVER’S LANE||Ryan Balfour||15||56kg||88|
|16||RED EXCITEMENT||Gerald Ryan||16||56kg||103|
|17||CHESTER ROAD||Adam Durrant||17||56kg||95|
|18||BACKSTEDT||David Hayes & Tom Dabernig||18||56kg||95|