Yoshitada Munakata’s star Japanese stallion Fame Game will look to hand Japan with back-to-back Caulfield Cup wins this Saturday in Melbourne featuring as one of the final acceptors in a capacity field for the 2015 edition of the world’s richest mile and a half handicap.
Due to run as Caulfield Race 7, this weekend’s $3 million Group 1 BMW Caulfield Cup (2400m) features a full 18 starters plus four emergencies, the early favourite being Heart’s Cry six-year-old Fame Game.
Leading the pre and post-field Caulfield Cup odds at Ladbrokes.com.au, who are offering an exclusive Best Tote or SP + 20% on ALL Races this Caulfield Cup Day, Fame Game shoots for his maiden first-up win at attempt number seven racing for the first time since a second to champion stayer Gold Ship in the Group 1 Tenno Sho (3200m) back home over the two miles in early May.
Before that he won over 3400m in Group 3 company, and Saturday he looks for his maiden 2400m victory carrying 57kg.
Twelve months ago Japan’s Admire Rakti carried a kilo more to Caulfield Cup victory with Zac Purton aboard, Purton also engaged to ride Fame Game this year shooting for back-to-back wins.
The other Japanese-trained hopeful in the mix in 2015 is Hokko Brave who jockey Craig Williams will attempt to win his third Caulfield Cup aboard following his victories on Southern Speed (2011) and Dunaden (2012), the veteran eight-year-old getting in on 55.5kg.
The two equal 58kg top weights in the Caulfield Cup field on Saturday, looking to join both Admire Rakti (2014) and Dunaden (2012) as recent Caulfield Cup winners with that weight, are last year’s Melbourne Cup winner Protectionist and European raider Snow Sky.
Now prepared in Sydney by Kris Lees, the former German-trained Monsun stallion Protectionist hasn’t won a race since his success in the Melbourne Cup last November and is out to atone for a last start 13th in the Group 1 Turnbull Stakes (2000m) at Flemington on October 4.
The Turnbull Stakes has produced four of the past six Caulfield Cup champions, most recently Fawkner (3rd in 2013).
Snow Sky meanwhile is one of just three European stayers in the mix this season, one of which is an emergency needing an early scratching to make the starting line-up.
Four-time Caulfield Cup winning jockey Damien Oliver rides the Nayef stallion, winner of the Group 2 Hardwicke Stakes (2410m) in June whose last start was a sixth of seven runners when carrying 60.5kg in the Group 1 King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2414m) at Ascot on July 25.
Oliver’s previous Caulfield Cup winning rides were aboard: Mannerism (1992), Paris Lane (1994), Doriemus (1995) and most recently Sky Heights (1999).
The other two Europeans in the mix looking to be the first since Dunaden (2012) to win are the Ed Dunlop-trained Group 1 Ascot Gold Cup winner over 4023m Trip To Paris to be ridden by Sydney-based jockey Tommy Berry on 55kg and Roger Charlton’s 53.5kg lightweight Goodwood Cup runner-up Quest For More who Berry is on standby to ride as the first emergency in the field.
Other Caulfield Cup acceptors high up the weights and ratings include the Lee & Anthony Freedman-trained German import Our Ivanhowe (56kg) coming off a second when carrying 60kg behind Let’s Make Adeal in the Group 3 The Bart Cummings (2520m) from October 4 and the Kiwi galloper Mongolian Khan (55kg).
Prepared by Murray Baker, Holy Roman Emperor stallion Mongolian Khan won the Group 1 ATC Derby (2400m) over this distance in Sydney as a three-year-old and was last seen running third when beaten just over half a length by Criterion in last Saturday’s Group 1 Caulfield Stakes (2000m).
He’s back up to a distance he is undefeated over, drops from 58kg to 55kg and is looking to become the first four-year-old Caulfield Cup winner since Southern Speed (2011).
Check out the full Caulfield Cup field, weights and jockeys below.
The 2015 Caulfield Cup barrier draw takes place this afternoon at 5:00pm (AEST).
Before then make sure you’re ready to access Best Tote or SP + 20% on the Caulfield Cup by signing up with the country’s leading online bookmaker Ladbrokes.com.au now!
2015 Caulfield Cup Final Field
Caulfield Race 7 – 17/10/2015
|#||Form (Last 10)||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Barrier||Weight||Hcp. Rating|
|1||1x6857x080||PROTECTIONIST (GER)||Kris Lees||Brenton Avdulla||0||58kg||114|
|2||123x7x116x||SNOW SKY (GB)||Sir Michael Stoute||Damien Oliver||0||58kg||115|
|3||6x61x01x2x||FAME GAME (JPN)||Yoshitada Munakata||Zac Purton||0||57kg||113|
|4||x1016x7x92||OUR IVANHOWE (GER)||Lee & Anthony Freedman||Ben Melham||0||56kg||112|
|5||238x05x36x||HOKKO BRAVE (JPN)||Yasutoshi Matsunaga||Craig Williams||0||55.5kg||110|
|6||111151×743||MONGOLIAN KHAN||Murray Baker||Opie Bosson||0||55kg||112|
|7||4×41112135||TRIP TO PARIS (IRE)||Ed Dunlop||Tommy Berry||0||55kg||109|
|8||3x5442x758||WHO SHOT THEBARMAN (NZ)||Chris Waller||Blake Shinn||0||54.5kg||109|
|9||889431×075||GRAND MARSHAL (GB)||Chris Waller||Jim Cassidy||0||53.5kg||106|
|10||x7433x1322||ROYAL DESCENT||Chris Waller||Glen Boss||0||53.5kg||112|
|11||13213×7059||VOLKSTOK’N’BARRELL (NZ)||Donna Logan||Craig Newitt||0||53.5kg||110|
|13||x49376x648||LUCIA VALENTINA (NZ)||Kris Lees||Dwayne Dunn||0||53kg||110|
|14||26x122x620||RISING ROMANCE (NZ)||David Hayes & Tom Dabernig||Damian Lane||0||53kg||110|
|15||18411×0000||MAGICOOL||Mark Kavanagh||James Winks||0||52kg||101|
|16||4x1141x980||GUST OF WIND (NZ)||John Sargent||Chad Schofield||0||51kg||102|
|17||11x230x253||SET SQUARE||Ciaron Maher||Kerrin McEvoy||0||51kg||103|
|18||42494×1112||MAGNAPAL||Terry & Karina O’Sullivan||Dean Yendall||0||50kg||96|
|19e||2201x2112x||QUEST FOR MORE (IRE)||Roger Charlton||Tommy Berry||0||53.5kg||106|
|21e||3352x0x339||DIBAYANI (IRE)||David Hayes & Tom Dabernig||TBA||0||53kg||105|
|22e||955×143121||MAGIC HURRICANE (IRE)||John O’Shea||TBA||0||52.5kg (inc. 2.5kg penalty)||107|