Sydney’s premier trainer Chris Waller brings his in-form import Index Linked up to the Sunshine Coast Racecourse this weekend with the galloper the top weight in Saturday’s 2015 Caloundra Cup field.
Due to jump as the Sunshine Coast Race 6 at 3:22pm (AEST), this year’s $175,000 Listed Linked Group Plumbing Caloundra Cup (2400m) features a final field of just 12 stayers led by Waller’s Dansili seven-year-old Index Linked.
Last seen in the winner’s stall back in mid-March when taking out the Yarra Valley Cup (1950m), Index Linked has had three subsequent runs with his best result being last time out at the Gold Coast on April 25 when half a length away second behind Epingle in the Group 3 Chairman’s Handicap (2000m).
Now he’s up over a distance he’s had just the one unplaced run over so far when Damian Browne rides Index Linked from barrier two with the 59kg top weight on the weekend.
The second heaviest weighted galloper in the Caloundra Cup field is the John Thompson-trained Tremec also drawn well in barrier two and set to carry 57kg with jockey Timothy Bell in the saddle.
Winner of the Group 2 Chairman’s Handicap (2600m) in Sydney on April 6, Zabeel six-year-old Tremec is out to improve on his sixth in the Gold Coast’s edition of the Chairman’s when beaten two and a half lengths last time out.
Other in-form hopes include the Robert Heathcote-trained Volkhere who has barrier 11 to overcome but just 54.5kg on his back with Tegan Harrison aboard and Chris Munce’s final acceptor Perplexity in gate six on the 54kg minimum.
Brisbane-based Heathcote is full of confidence heading into the Caloundra Cup with his Dehere six-year-old Volkhere after his Chairman’s Handicap third on the Gold Coast and a last start second behind subsequent Doomben Cup winner Pornichet in the Toowoomba Cup (2150m).
Volkhere also has winning form up to 2200m and three pervious runs at the Sunshine Coast on his record.
Perplexity meanwhile won at Doomben over 2200m on April 11 before his fourth in the Chairman’s Handicap on AD Hollindale Stakes Day, which is shaping up as the possible form line to follow going into the Caloundra Cup on Saturday.
Munce has won three Caloundra Cups as a jockey including last year’s edition of the winter staying showdown, but this weekend the 45-year-old seeks his first as a trainer.
“He’s in a bit of peak form at the moment, which is always encouraging going into a feature race,” Munce told the Sunshine Coast Daily speaking of Perplexity.
“I expect him to run pretty well.”
The jockey-turned-trainer is also confident the horse has improvement in him on the back of a luckless Chairman’s run last time out.
“He’s a tough, honest horse and he always puts in,” Munce said.
“There’s no fuss about him. He goes about his work pretty casually and gets the job done. He’s just a pleasure to train.
“He had a pretty unlucky run (last start).”
Other notable Caloundra Cup hopes including veteran eight-year-old local Freton having his incredible 75th career start on the back of a Toowoomba Cup sixth, Ben Currie’s always-honest Supercoach and Kobi Creek.
One of just two last start winners in the line-up, Mark Palmer’s Beaudesert-based four-year-old Kobi Creek comes off a Class 1 win at the Gold Coast from last Saturday and drops from 59kg to just 54kg with the inside alley his to jump from as well.
See below for the full Caloundra Cup 2015 field, barriers, jockeys and weights.
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2015 Caloundra Cup Final Field & Barrier Draw
Sunshine Coast Race 6 (3:22pm) – 16/05/2015
|#||Form (Last 10)||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Br.||Wgt.||Hcp. Rating|
|1||x898111052||INDEX LINKED (GB)||Chris Waller||Damian Browne||4||59kg||103|
|2||0x44x07816||TREMEC (NZ)||John P Thompson||Timothy Bell||2||57kg||99|
|3||765×475200||ESCADO||Matt Laurie||Luke Nolen||7||56kg||97|
|4||x676x01627||SIR JOHN HAWKWOOD (IRE)||Peter G Moody||TBA||8||54.5kg||94|
|5||2212×04332||VOLKHERE||Robert Heathcote||Tegan Harrison||11||54.5kg||94|
|6||2038231414||PERPLEXITY||Chris Munce||Jeff Lloyd||6||54kg||86|
|7||x272x73526||FRETON||Troy Hall||Luke Tarrant (a)||10||54kg||81|
|8||811×075927||ONGOING VENTURE||Darlene Duryea||Michael Cahill||9||54kg||80|
|9||6×02849395||LUCKZAT (NZ)||Wayne Walters||TBA||3||54kg||77|
|10||2303223315||SUPERCOACH||Ben Currie||Ryan Wiggins||12||54kg||74|
|11||2×49632061||WIMPOLE STREET (IRE)||Louise White||TBA||5||54kg||66|
|12||709×665121||KOBI CREEK||Mark Palmer||TBA||1||54kg||65|