Hopefully I managed to put some of you on to the Caulfield Cup winner Boom Time. In Australia he paid 50/1 although when I put the preview up he was a best price of 40/1 and I only took 33s as I wanted the 5 places. He was given the perfect ride and it was one of those races where everything fell into place. Not for one second do I think he was the best horse in the race, but he was in the right place at the right time and was good enough to take advantage.
On Wednesday at 6am we have the Geelong Cup and unusually there is no horse from Europe running in the race. We do though have a certain ex-French horse. If you read my piece on the Everest you will have read why I have been closely following Gallic Chieftain. Although his trainer Darren Weir did say the Queen Elizabeth on the final day of the Melbourne Cup Carnival was the main aim, I did wonder if he would take in the Geelong Cup on the way and he does just that. He finished 3rd in the Herbert Power and his jockey said after the race that the trainer needed to get him fit. Now I am not sure if that was tongue in cheek or what, but it does back up what Weir said pre-race when saying he might need one more run.
Now the Herbert Power is looking like a really strong piece of form. Boom Time was 4th in it and Lord Fandango who finished 4th in the Caulfield Cup won it. Lord Fandango also travelled 19 meters further than the winner so needless to say he probably would have confirmed the form with a kinder run. Hugo Palmer’s Wall Of Fire was 2nd and it was no surprise he firmed up for the Melbourne Cup after what happened on Saturday. It was great to see the form be franked in such a strong way on Saturday given how much I like the horse and I really am struggling to see how he fails to land this prize.
There are a couple of dangers. Berisha was a good 2nd to Folkswood in the Cranbourne Cup and that obviously brings him into contention here. He is 1-1 at the distance as he won the Mornington Cup last year. However he was behind Gallic Chieftain at Moonee Valley on his previous start and on that form I struggle to him reversing the placings. Grey Lion was 2nd in this last year and 3rd in the Cranbourne Cup and no doubt this has been his target. He will probably make the running and hopefully Gallic Chieftain can run him down. Gallic Chieftain’s stablemate Kellstorm wouldn’t be out of it on his 3rd in the Bart Cummings last time, but I thought it was a funny race and I don’t think the form can be trusted.
The main danger though could be from Archie Alexander’s Wheal Leisure. She has won both starts this prep and beat Lord Fandango on the first of them. She followed up at Caulfield at the start of the month and was scratched from a race on Saturday to run in this. Those wins came over 1600m and 2000m but the trip shouldn’t be an issue.
Interestingly Craig Williams takes the ride on Gallic Chieftain despite the fact Weir slagged off his ride on Amelie’s Star in the Caulfield Cup. To be fair it was a poor ride and I am sure Williams will be keen to make amends. He has a great draw in 2 and he should be able to settle midfield before making his run down the straight. I’m pretty confident about his chances on Wednesday morning in fact I would be disappointed if he failed to collect