One of Australia’s premier jockeys Damien Oliver will shoot for his fifth Caulfield Cup victory this Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival having secured the ride on international raider Snow Sky.
Oliver is the most successful Caulfield Cup hoop in recent years with 20 rides for four wins, two seconds and a third, a record he gets a chance to add to in 2015 on October 17.
His previous Caulfield Cup winners are: Mannerism (1997), Paris Lane (1994), Doriemus (1995) and most recently Sky Heights (1999) meaning it has been a long time between drinks for the rider in the mile and a half classic.
Last year Oliver rode the Chris Waller-trained Hawkspur who could only manage to finish two and a half lengths away eighth to the Japanese-trained winner Admire Rakti (2014).
Admire Rakti was the second horse in three years to carry 58kg to victory in a Caulfield Cup along with France’s Dunaden (2012), and that is the same top weight Oliver’s ride this season Snow Sky is allocated.
Along with last year’s Melbourne Cup winner Protectionist, Snow Sky has 58kg for the $3 million Group 1 BMW Caulfield Cup (2400m) and the Sir Michael Stoute-trained Nayef stallion currently pays $17 through Ladbrokes.com.au to salute with the big weight.
Attempting to secure successive Caulfield Cup victories for Japan this year is the early $9 favourite Fame Game with 57kg, a weight last carried to victory by the Bart Cummings-trained Viewed (2009).
The Newmarket-based Stoute is yet to saddle-up a Caulfield Cup runner, but looks in with a big chance with his Northern Hemisphere four-year-old Snow Sky.
A winner of five of his 14 starts to date, Snow Sky’s latest win was the Group 2 Hardwicke Stakes (2414m) at Ascot on June 20.
He then ran second last when beaten nearly seven lengths crossing sixth behind Postponed after carrying a hefty 60.5kg in the Group 1 King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2414m) at the same track and distance on July 25.
The Caulfield Cup is the only ride Oliver is committed to ride Snow Sky in for the raider’s Melbourne assault, Snow Sky also nominated for the $6.2 million Group 1 Melbourne Cup (3200m) over the two miles at Flemington on the first Tuesday of November.
Snow Sky is expected to arrive down under and enter quarantine in Victoria this weekend along with six other international visitors.
Early Spring Cups favourite Fame Game and the fellow Japanese-trained Hokko Brave are already in Australia after arriving last Saturday.
2015 Caulfield Cup second acceptances narrowing down the list of potential stayers to line-up in next month’s major close at midday on Tuesday and will be published right here at Races.com.au shortly after so stay tuned.
In the meantime head over to Ladbrokes.com.au and enjoy the juicy futures prices on offer for the upcoming spring Group 1s including the Caulfield Cup at the bookie rewarding new depositing players with up to $700 in bonus bets with use of the code SPRINGBONUS!