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Caulfield Cup Focus

Jameka demolishing her rivals in the 2016 Caulfield Cup. Image: Quentin Lang,

Peter Ellis Racing is looking to highlight some prospects that have been nominated in the feature races this spring with our primary focus on Victoria commencing with the Carlton Draught Caulfield Cup (2400 m.), to be in four weeks-time on Saturday, October 16th

We look at a few gallopers that are nominated for the race to see if they have the qualities to win the Melbourne Racing Clubs feature handicap that offers $5million in prizemoney to connections.   In doing so we use the proven pathways, revealed by previous winners, as they can reveal opportunities as Peter Ellis considers various performances along the way.

Many punters enjoy taking ‘Spring’ doubles with the Caulfield Cup of that speculative wager some of your ‘early selections’ can be challenging as we look to see if we can help identify a race where the form can reveal high level performances which can assist in making this bet type fulfilling rather than costly.   

Peter Ellis Racing hopes to make this process enjoyable, and you don’t always need a big budget as we look to offer uncomplicated analysis without any compromises.  History does tell us over the last 22-years only two fillies trained on from an Oaks win a season earlier to win the Caulfield Cup in the following and they were Ethereal (Rhythm – Romanee Conti) and Jameka (Myboycharlie – Mine Game). 

Ethereal won the Queensland Oaks on a firm track in 2000 the following spring the Handicapper allotted the bay 50 kilos, on a soft track the mare defeated Sky Heights. Then at Ethereal’ s next start under Scott Seamer, the mare finished to strongly, down the middle of the track, defeating Give the Slip, near the rail, in the iconic Melbourne Cup carrying 52 kilos. 

Jameka’s profile differed slightly as the filly won the Victoria Racing Club Oaks in 2015 training on to collect another spring trophy in the Caulfield Cup carrying 52.5-kilos in 2016.  

Last season, Hungry Heart (Frankel – Harlech) won the ATC Oaks by a length-and-a-quarter after wins in the Club’s Phar Lap (1500 m.) & Vinery Stud Stakes (2000 m.) rounding off a season that included nine runs for three wins and as many placings earning connections more than $1.2million.   

Hungry Heart. Image: Grant Guy,

Duais (Shamus Award – Meerlus) faced the starter eight times recording four wins and three placings banking more than $700,000 for connections.   Duais’ handicapper rating suggests that performance was slightly inferior after the bay showing sharp progression from a maiden win in December 2020 through to the ATC Adrian Knox Stakes. Although runner-up to Hungry Heart in the ATC Oaks, Duais best run was in Queensland to win the State’s Oaks (2200 m.) on a good track in June.

As much as racing performance assists, history does show not all three-year-old’s make the necessary improvement from their classic season into the next.  This factor will once again be critical in determining if your selections were mature in their classic season or if they have the conformation to keep developing therefore consideration should be given to any stamina shown (or not) within their pedigrees.

Other gallopers that are progressing out of their classic season are Montefilia (ex-Bana Wu) off a nine-start campaign that yielded three wins and two placing. Trained by David Payne this mare banked more than $1.2million for connections after wins in the Flight (1600 m.) and Champion Stakes (2000 m.).  By Kermadec (by Teofilo) the mare hails from a family that’s produced the 2008 Caulfield Cup hero All The Good along with the Epsom & Curragh Oaks winner Ramruma plus the Lingfield Oaks Trial winner Ausherra.   

Tavistock’s stock has won plenty of top-class races in Australia two of this horses’ gelded sons, Johnny Get Angry (ex Luminova) and Young Werther (ex-Romantic Time) may have some influence this spring. 

Johnny Get Angry won last seasons’ VRC Derby decisively beating Young Werther (in third) whereas that gelding was sent to Sydney in the autumn to contest the ATC Australian Derby (2400 m.) and finished runner-up to Explosive Jack (Jakkalberry – Extra Explosive) in the feature.

Explosive Jack’s performances last season were tough. The colt won the SA Derby (2500 m.) at its next start, as well as winning the Tasmanian Derby (2200 m.) in Hobart earlier in February.   A magnificent classic season that featured nine runs, recording five wins, three placings to bank connections more than $1.7million, Explosive Jack hails from a female family that’s produced a New Zealand Derby winner in Vin De Dance (by Roc De Cambes) too. 

Young Werther’s grandam Shalt Not (by St. Covet) won two stakes’ races as a two-year-old and is from a family that’s produced Grand Zulu (H.E. Tancred Stakes) while Johnny Get Angry’s grandam is the MVRC JRA Cup winner Pavlova (by Singspiel) that hails from a family that’s produced Markham winner of the SAJC South Australian Derby.

Ethereal (centre) defeats Sky Heights and Celestial Show in the 2001 Caulfield Cup. Image: Quentin Lang,