English trainer for the powerhouse Godolphin stable Charlie Appleby has confirmed plans to head down under for a big assault on the Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival features including a strong Caulfield Cup 2016 hope in Scottish.
The Newmarket-based horseman has just the one horse nominated for the $3 million Group 1 BMW Caulfield Cup (2400m) run on October 15.
He has a total of five stayers in the mix however for the ‘race that stops a nation’ on November 1 at Flemington Racecourse, Appleby well represented amongst the 124 nominations taken this week for the $6 million Group 1 Melbourne Cup (3200m).
His headline Spring Cups’ hope Scottish is also two entries for the stable along with Tryster for the $3 million Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m) run at Moonee Valley on October 22.
This week the 2016 Caulfield Cup weights were also released by Racing Victoria.
Teofilo gelding Scottish received 54.5kg for the mile and a half classic, a weight that pleased Appleby.
“I am happy with that weight. He is an adaptable horse with a high cruising speed, who I think will be ideal for Caulfield,” Appleby said.
Racing as a five-year-old down under, Scottish was last seen winning the Group 3 Strensall Stakes (1811m) at York a fortnight back with 59.5kg on his back.
That win was part of a nice string of form from the galloper who also won over 2012m at Newbury in July and ran second in the Group 3 Lancaster Stakes (2086m) at Haydock Park in early August.
Scottish currently pays $15 as the equal favourite in pre-field Caulfield Cup odds with the Mick Price-trained four-year-old Tarzino who has a handicap of 54kg for his attempt at completing the VRC Derby – Caulfield Cup double in successive seasons.
The last international-trained Caulfield Cup winner outside of Australia or New Zealand was the Japanese raider Admire Rakti (2014).
Along with Scottish Appleby’s other 2016 Melbourne Cup nominated horses and their current all-in odds are: Second Wave ($61), Oceanographer ($151), Qewy ($151) and Francis Of Assisi ($201).
“All of the five in my stable have completed their preparations over here and they are ready to go into quarantine on September 15,” Appleby said of his Melbourne Cup quintet.
In Cox Plate betting Scottish pays $51 to take out Australasia’s weight-for-age championship and Godolphin have plans to race him at Moonee Valley, Geelong and Bendigo on way to the Melbourne Cup at Flemington.
“His Highness Sheikh Mohammed would love to win the Melbourne Cup – he has gone close to winning several times. But, he is also interested in targeting other races during the Melbourne Spring Carnival and we believe we have a team of suitable horses for those races,” Godolphin chief executive and racing manager John Ferguson said this week.
Scottish is trumped in the Cox Plate markets by stablemate Tryster ($26).
A six-year-old son of Shamardal, Tryster is a six time winner from 11 previous runs over the Cox Plate distance.
His latest win was in Dubai over 1800m in early March, while his last start was an eighth in the Group 1 Arlington Million (2000m) in the USA on August 13.
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