Six internationally-trained raiders, including topweight Best Solution, will take on some of Australasia’s best stayers in Saturday’s $5.15 million Stella Artois Caulfield Cup after the final field of 18 for the world’s richest turf handicap over 2400m was released by Racing Victoria (RV) this morning.
Best Solution, trained by Saeed bin Suroor and ridden by Irish jockey Pat Cosgrave, will carry 57.5kg in his bid to claim a fourth successive victory, having followed up his win in the Group 2 Princess of Wales’s Stakes (2400m) at Newmarket (UK) with back-to-back Group 1s in Germany.
The Godolphin galloper will line up against five fellow raiders, including the next highest-weighted horse, Aidan O’Brien’s The Cliffsofmoher (56.5kg), who will be ridden by Hugh Bowman.
Japanese stayers Chestnut Coat (trained by Yoshito Yahagi) and Sole Impact (Hirofumi Toda), and UK visitors Duretto (Andrew Balding) and Red Verdon (Ed Dunlop), complete the set of runners who will make their way from RV’s Werribee International Horse Centre to Caulfield on Saturday.
The home contingent will be led by Victoria’s leading trainer, Darren Weir, who saddles three competitors including Kings Will Dream, who regained favouritism for the race following the withdrawal of last Saturday’s dominant Ladbrokes Herbert Power Stakes (2400m) winner Yucatan.
Kings Will Dream, who earned his place in the field with his emphatic win in the Listed Mornington Cup (2400m), will be joined in the race by his stablemates Gallic Chieftain and Night’s Watch, aiming to deliver a maiden Group 1 success for emerging jockey Ben Allen.
Liam Howley has two runners, with The Taj Mahal and Homesman sent out from Lloyd Williams’ Macedon Lodge stable, and Mike Moroney is also launching a two-pronged assault with German import Sound Check and last year’s Geelong Cup (2400m) winner Vengeur Masque both lining up for the Flemington trainer.
Sydney’s premier trainer Chris Waller will be reliant on Youngstar, the bottom weight on 51.5kg, to produce his first win in the Caulfield Cup; Lindsay Park’s hopes of claiming a second straight victory in the race rest on Ventura Storm, who will be ridden by Regan Bayliss; and Mick Price will be aiming to register another Group 1 success with Mighty Boss, the winner of last year’s Caulfield Guineas (1600m).
The two emergencies, in order, are Patrick Erin (Chris Waller) and Jaameh (Lindsay Park), who would gain a place in the event of any withdrawals.
The Caulfield Cup, which will be run at 4.40pm on Saturday, is the headline act on a superb day of racing which carries more than $6.7 million in prizemoney and features two Group 2 races, four Group 3s and two Listed contests.
The barrier draw for the Caulfield Cup will be held at Caulfield at 11am tomorrow (17 October).