The countdown to the Sydney Spring Racing...
Record-holding Melbourne Cup winning trainer the ‘Cups King’ Bart Cummings will welcome star USA galloper Sanagas to his Flemington-based operation, the Group 1 champ to target the 2012 Melbourne Cup in the spring.
Cummings has prepared an unprecedented 12 Melbourne Cup winners over his illustrious and at times testing training career, the last of which was Viewed in 2008.
Out to break his drought with a baker’s dozen this year, Cummings has been assigned crack North American stayer Sanagas who will be aimed at the $6 million Group 1 Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington on Tuesday November 6, 2012.
Winner of the prestigious Group 1 Hollywood Turf Cup (2400m) last November by a devastating three and a quarter lengths, the German-bred Sanagas is raced in part by Aussie connections, the Victorian-based BC3 Thoroughbreds.
The BC3 purchased Sanagas in connection with David Bernsen, a well-known American thoroughbred breeder and owner, with the exclusive target being the iconic Melbourne Cup.
And what better trainer to send their newly-acquired star to for the spring than the maestro.
“We are delighted that Bart has agreed to train the horse for us,” BC3 Thoroughbreds CEO Bill Vlahos said.
“His record in the Melbourne Cup is unparalleled and it is the race we have purchased Sanagas specifically for.
“It’s a very exciting time for BC3.
“We canvassed the world looking for the best stayers to compete in our premier races like the Caulfield and Melbourne Cups and we delighted to get Sanagas who is lightly raced and has enormous talent.”
Currently prepared in the USA by Peter Miller, Sanagas has raced 10 times producing an incredible seven wins which they will look to add to with three runs at home this season starting on this weekend in the Group 2 San Marcos Stakes (2000m).
The will then go second-up into the Group 2 San Luis Rey Stakes (2400m) on March 18 before stepping up to 2400m at Santa Anita, California for the Group 2 San Juan Capistrano Handicap on April 22.
They are then scheduled to enter quarantine before embarking on an expedition down under two days later on April 23.
“The horse will be out of quarantine in Sydney in early June and then Bart’s focus will be on having him right for the Spring Racing Carnival, and in particular that first Tuesday in November,” Vlahos said.
Cummings was excited to be named as the man in charge of Sanagas’ Australian campaign, saying he was impressed with what he had seen of the horse so far.
“We’ll welcome him with open arms when he arrives and look forward to preparing him for the Melbourne Cup,” Cummings said.
“I’ve watched his wins in the Hollywood Cup and was very impressed with the acceleration he showed after racing wide without cover.”
Two of Cummings’ other likely 2012 Melbourne Cup hopefuls are also set to resume racing this weekend with German import Illo and the always-honest Precedence having been nominated to take on superstar mare Black Caviar in the $400,000 Group 1 CF Orr Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield.
Zabeel six-year-old Precedence and Tertullian stallion Illo were both seen racing in last year’s Melbourne Cup when they finished and 11th and 19th respectively behind winner the French-trained winner Duanden.
Melbourne Cup 2012 odds are already up and getting plenty of attention at Luxbet, markets led by 2010 winner and last year’s eye catching fourth-placed Americain.
Americain is equal $21 favouite along with the liked of boom filly Atlantic Jewel, Victoria Derby runner-up Induna, and last year’s Melbourne Cup second (Red Cadeaux) and third (Lucas Cranach) placegetters.
Sanagas is currently rated $41 in the early markets, equal with Illo, while Precedence is unlisted in the futures.
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