After what was a disappointing Breeders Cup for the European raiders eyes will now turn to the race that stops the nation – The Melbourne Cup. Could Cumani be successful in his quest to restore European pride?
Luca Cumani has been unlucky twice finishing second in the great Australian race and thought last year that his fellow Newmarket trainer Ed Dunlop had been successful only to find that his Red Cadeaux had been pipped on the line by the French trained Dunaden. This year the European raiders dominate the Melbourne Cup market and look to have a stranglehold on the race itself to the probable annoyance of the locals.
Cumani would love to win the race and has made a good business of exporting stayers down under in recent years. The market suggests that his best chance of sealing victory is with Mount Athos who has been aimed at this race all season. However, Crockford believes that Quest For Peace (now named My Quest For Peace whilst racing down under as Peter Moody has a horse in training under the same name) is not to be ruled out. Having notched up good wins at Goodwood this summer, he certainly was not disgraced finishing fifth in the Caulfield Cup. That race may have just freshened him up for his run at Flemington and at 20/1 with Ladbrokes he looks the value bet each way.
Dunaden, Red Cadeaux and Amercain re-oppose each other after fighting out the places last year. Ed Dunlop has not opted for a prep race as many trainers do when running down under and hopes that his charge will be as sharp or if not better as he was last year. Dunaden won the Caulfield Cup passing My Quest For Peace in the final furlong and must have a reasonable chance in having a back to back success in the race.
Marco Botti has been a successful globetrotter this year and will not be without a chance of a place with his Jakkalberry on Tuesday. At 40/1 with Ladbrokes Crockford could not help but to be tempted to make a small each way wager on the American St Leger winner.
With all this talk about the foreign opposition do the Aussies have a chance of keeping the Cup for themselves? Crockford considers their best hopes probably lie with Ex-British pair Green Moon and Glencadam Gold but they all look long-shots to be truthful.
Come Tuesday morning Crockford believes we will be waking up here in the UK to the chorus of a British win for Cumani.
(Featured Photograph – Quest For Peace at Goodwood by Stuart Rice)
(Photograph left – Quest For Peace winning at Glorious Goodwood by Stuart Rice)