The Ben, Will & JD Hayes-trained Cox...
Race day betting on the Caulfield Cup 2023 today in Melbourne has seen a big move for one of the five internationals in the mix with West Wind Blows now favourite for the mile and a half classic.
The Simon & Ed Crisford-trained British visitor has been well-supported in from $7 to $5.50 favouritism at Ladbrokes.com.au to win this afternoon’s Group 1 $5 million Carlton Draught Caulfield Cup (2400m).
Jamie Spencer has the ride from barrier two on the consistent Teofilo five-year-old who will appreciate slotting in from the good gate.
Spencer came under fire for his wide run with no cover when the horse made his Australian debut in the Group 1 Turnbull Stakes (2000m).
Having done it tough the entire trip, West Wind Blows was so brave crossing 1.75 lengths second to Gold Trip that run with improvement to come now second-up over further.
The Ciaron Maher & David Eustace-trained 58.5kg top-weight Gold Trip is now out to $6.50 occupying the second line of Caulfield Cup betting to win again.
The reigning Melbourne Cup champ is third-up now with Ben Melham in the saddle for the first time from an ideal barrier 11 draw which the horse jumped from when runner-up to Dunaden in last year’s Caulfield Cup results.
He is going even better this prep, will likely settle second-half and as a proven two-miler will have plenty in the tank late to run over the top of them so long as he handles the kilos.
It is one of the most open recent editions of the time-honoured clash with a further three runners also at single-figure Caulfield Cup odds including the Anthony & Sam Freedman-trained Without A Fight ($7.50).
Mark Zahra continues associations with the winter’s impressive Group 2 $1.2 million The Q22 (2200m) winner in Brisbane who resumed with an eye-catching sixth to Alligator Blood in the Group 1 Underwood Stakes (1800m).
He was only 2.25 lengths beaten that day, returns second-up to Caulfield getting out over a better trip now having been kept fresh since.
Without A Fight made up plenty of ground from the back and has the support of Zahra who opted to stick with him over the ride on Gold Trip which bodes well.
There has been enormous money on the Joseph O’Brien-trained Irish galloper Valiant King since the horse drew barrier one.
Jamie Kah partners the Roaring Lion grey on just 50kg with the progressive youngster making his Group 1 debut today.
He faces a notable rise in grade and takes on some far better experienced rivals as a European three-year-old having just his eighth start.
Barrier one statistically has been more of a hinderance than help in the Caulfield Cup, but that hasn’t stopped the punters coming for him.
The pro is his form around current Melbourne Cup favourite Vauban who he finished second to over this distance in a Group 3 at home last time out.
Jamie Kah is also well-versed in the big league and on that weight with her aboard there is quite a bit to like.
Getting out to nice value now is the Chris Waller-trained Soulcombe.
He is in and out of favour with the race day punters with the import out to $9 earlier in the morning but back into $7.50 now to hand Waller his third Caulfield Cup victory in four years.
Craig Williams rides from last year’s winning gate (6) for last year’s winning stable and Soulcombe is rock-hard fit fourth-up.
The Frankel five-year-old has been going great guns in top company bringing in strong form lines including a third in the Turnbull with 56kg.
He is beautifully weighted for the Cup with 53.5kg and profiles very well for a win here.
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