Cavalryman eyes first crack at Melbourne Cup

Will bid to give Godolphin first win in Australia’s most famous race

Godolphin jockey Frankie Dettori
Image Credit: Virendra Saklani/Gulf News Archive
Frankie Dettori in action
Gulf News

Dubai: Godolphin’s globe-trotting star Cavalryman has arrived in Australia to complete his final preparations ahead of his bid to win the Emirates Melbourne Cup (G1), which takes place on November 6.

The six-year-old son of Halling has contested several of the major long-distance races in the UK, France, Germany, Italy and the UAE, but is making his first appearance in Australia’s most famous horse race at Flemington Racecourse.

He is accompanied by stable companion Lost In The Moment, who ran a big race to finish a close sixth to Dunaden in the two-mile event 12 months ago.

Both Godolphin hopefuls have settled in at the Werribee International Horse Centre and are scheduled to work for the first time on Thursday.

Godolphin handler Saeed Bin Surour will arrive in Melbourne to supervise their final preparations.

Cavalryman and Lost In The Moment flew from Stansted Airport in the UK and even had a 90-minute stop-over in Dubai before arriving at Melbourne late on Monday afternoon.

Both horses have spent the two weeks in quarantine at Newmarket and will remain in quarantine at Werribee until next month’s big race.

Godolphin’s best results in the Melbourne Cup were second places by Give The Slip in 2001 and Central Park in 1999 while Beekeeper was third to British winner Media Puzzle in 2002.

Frankie Dettori, who will end his 18-year relationship with Godolphin at the end of the season, is expected to partner Cavalryman who has ridden to victory in three of his career-six wins. Godolphin’s retained Brazilian jockey Silvestre de Souza will ride Lost In The Moment.

Dettori has never won the Melbourne Cup in 10 previous attempts and will hope to end his association with Godolphin by giving them victory in a race that they have long sought to win.

Meanwhile, in-form Australian jockey Craig Williams will attempt to given Dunaden back-to-back victories in the Melbourne Cup.

David Redvers, the racing manager for Dunaden’s owner, Shaikh Fahd Al Thani, told Radio Sports Nationa: “I would just say that Dunaden is something very, very special.

“He’s a horse that has this incredible will to win. He loves travelling, he adores Australia … I do genuinely believe that with luck in running you will see something that will rewrite the history books.

“He’s been given a huge ask (59kg). But equally one would has to say he has earned it. I just hope that he comes out of the race OK and is able to get a clear run, because if he gets a clear run I think he’ll win.”

Williams, who has been in outstanding form the past year added: “Dunaden has been a great horse to me and though I was disappointed not to ride him in the Melbourne Cup last year, winning the big race in Hong Kong on him gave me closure on that issue.

“His Caulfield Cup win was awesome and he’s kept his unbeaten Australian record.

“This horse gives me a great ride; we respond well together.

“I love the way he lowers himself and puts his ears back when he is at full speed. That’s a sign a horse really wants to win.”

The 2012 Melbourne Cup Field will be announced on Saturday evening, November 3.