The new 2019/2020 racing season is about to kick off on 1st of August,which is just around the corner, as this article goes to publication.
The latest announcement from the MVRC is the extended invite to two further horses from overseas, these being Danceteria and Madhmoon.
Danceteria we wrote about as our horse of the week in our prior #4 report.
Madhmoon has good three year old form around the English Derby this season (ran second to Anthony Van Dyck), and is trained by Kevin Prendergast over in Ireland.
Not too sure he’s a bona-fide Group 1 colt at this stage, with two wins from six starts though both those wins were in his two year old season.
He is however, racing in decent company, so that must count for something.
Danceteria won his maiden Group 1 race over in Germany on the weekend (Grosser Dallmayr-Preis), but because the ownership group is a global consortium, the horse’s immediate pathway is somewhat clouded, despite being owned by Australian Bloodstock.
Options are in the USA, Europe and UK, and of course Australia. We’ll know more in the coming days.
Watch this space.
In the meantime, the MVRC will provide an update sometime next week as to the status of the first eleven invites published some weeks back.
By our reckoning, most have dropped out of contention.
Just a reminder, here is the original list of Cox Plate invites:
- Aerolithe, JPN
- Almond Eye, JPN
- Benbatl, UAE
- Best Solution, UAE
- Crystal Ocean, UK
- Ghaiyyath, UK
- Indy Champ, JPN
- Kiseki, JPN
- Kluger, JPN
- Magical, IRE
- Zabeel Prince, UK
Of those, possibly Kluger, Benbatl and Best Solution remain a chance, mainly because they’ve been to Australia before and their connections know what to expect when they get here.
Wait, the Germans are coming!
In recent reports, we’ve highlighted the claims of current and former German based gallopers Beau Balmain and Danceteria.
Here’s another to add to the list: Django Freeman.
A place getter (second) in the sought after blue riband German Derby held two weeks ago in Hamburg, the flashy chestnut, who was the race favourite, came up against the impressive Laccario.
Django Freeman was bought by Australian interests Suman Hedge Bloodstock last year, and will land in Australia on August 17th, spend two weeks at Werribee for quarantine, then head to Robert Hickmott’s stables at Caulfield.
His immediate program takes in the Turnbull Stakes, with options toward the Caulfield Cup and WS Cox Plate.
If successful in the Turnbull, it then turns into a bonus incentive for the Cox Plate.
Horse profile of the week
This week we look at the prospects of New Zealand mare Melody Belle, who is a Te Akau trained galloper from the same stable as Te Akau Shark.
She is a six time Group 1 winner, and flies under-the-radar of most Australian punters who seem to be preoccupied with Group 2 and Group 3 gallopers coming out of Europe.
Her connections decided not to sell her for broodmare purposes earlier this year after receiving an offer of 3.25 million dollars from Australian interests, on the basis that they feel that she has another good season of racing ahead of her starting off with the Australian spring carnival.
By all reports, trainer Jamie Richards has her earmarked for the Cox Plate.
So it will be interesting to see which of the two stable stars that top Kiwi jockey Opie Bosson will opt for, as he will have first dibs on both, being Te Akau’s retained rider.
2019 Bonecrusher New Zealand Stakes (Group 1, 2000m)
A lot will depend on the track conditions of New Zealand racecourses which at the moment are fairly waterlogged.
Some trainers are already heading off to Australia early and will start their campaigns with their charges over here due to better track conditions.
However, Melody Belle is adept in the wet so she may head off down to Hastings and compete in the Group 1’s that are on offer during the early part of the New Zealand spring before making her way across the ditch.
Melody Belle is currently priced at $41 on SportsBet’s all in market for the Cox Plate.
That’s all for this weeks WS Cox Plate Watch Report. Keep checking in with Kruzey.com.au for more, as we count down to the last weekend in October 2019