Timeform Preview – 2018 Caulfield Cup

Trainer Darren Weir is no stranger to winning Cups but he is yet to land Caulfield’s premier prize.

Cup value hope Red Verdon
Cup value hope Red Verdon Picture: Racing and Sports

In fact, Australia’s two leading trainers Chris Waller and Darren Weir will be chasing their first Caulfield Cup win this afternoon.

It is hard to believe that between them, they have only won just one of the big two staying prizes on the Australian Turf.

To date, Weir has been selective in sending horses to the Caulfield Cup – just three – two of those finishing fifth, Real Love (2016) and Humidor (2017)- his closest finishes.

That could be all about to change in 2018, however, with King’s Will Dream the best chance in the race judged on Timeform ratings.

Kings Will Dreamhas been in impressive form exhibiting an upward spiralling Timeform ratings profile which, right now, makes him the horse to beat on Timeform weight adjusted ratings.

King’s Will Dream has been favourite for the Caulfield Cup since securing his place in the field all the way back in March by winning the Mornington Cup over the 2400m of the Cup trip.

At that point in time King’s Will Dream was Timeform rated 115p and everything has gone to plan since, putting that p to good use by improving to head into the Caulfield Cup rated 122 – a rating that sees him come out on top when adjusted for weight carried.

Slashing runs over 1400m to start the campaign gave him a great base for placings in the Makybe Diva and Turnbull – two races that were run very differently.

The Makybe was strongly run and while the mile is short of his best trip his stamina came to the fore as he stayed on into second.

The Turnbull – long one of the best lead-ups to the Caulfield Cup – was run at a crawl early and developed into a battle of speed late on. He closed powerfully there (though not as powerfully as the great Winx!) and set himself right up to peak on Caulfield Cup Day.

It is worth noting that that King’s Will Dream had a significant ratings spike last preparation when he got out in trip to 2400m so it appears the long-term plan looks to be coming together nicely.

The Chris Waller-trained Youngstar is the current favourite and earned that spot by getting past King’s Will Dream in the Turnbull. She won that battle of late speed, but only narrowly, and it is likely that King’s Will Dream will prove a bigger stumbling block at Caulfield.

With a Timeform rating of 118 she does profile very similarly to a series of four-year-old mares that have won or run well in the Caulfield Cup. Most recently Jameka who was also rated 118 and also came to Caulfield favourite having run second in the Turnbull.

Waller has had 16 runners in the Caulfield Cup – the closest he has come to winning was also fifth place with Royal Descent in 2013.

Youngstar rates as a superior mare going into the Caulfield Cup to 2015 fourth Gust Of Wind (114) and 2014 second Rising Romance (116) and identically to 2014 third Lucia Valentina, 2013 third Dear Demi and 2011 winner Southern Speed.

She fits a strong profile and so too does the Aidan O’Brien-trained Cliffs Of Moher who backs up from an eye-catching run in the Caulfield Stakes last week. Very similar to the run produced by his stablemate Johannes Vermeer who backed up to run third in the Caulfield Cup last year.

The Cliffs Of Moher has more weight to carry around Caulfield than Johannes Vermeer but his form, and profile, in Ireland and the UK, is superior and there is still a sense that we are yet to see the best of the son of Galileo.

The Cliffs Of Moher is far from the only traveller in the race. Red Verdon shapes as the pick of the others having beaten home The Cliffs Of Moher in the Hardwicke Stakes back at the Royal Meeting in June.

That was behind Crystal Ocean, who stepped up and ran second in a high-rating King George on the back of that success. It’s a strong-looking piece of form and Red Verdon has performed consistently at that level with form around a string of good horses like Mirage Dancer, Defoe, Magic Circle and Stradivarius this season all making for solid reading.

Unlike the Melbourne Cup, interestingly northern hemisphere trained horses having their first Australian campaign run in the Caulfield Cup have quite a good record – four wins and four places from 23 attempts – a point not lost on Ed Dunlop who almost broke the hoodoo in the Melbourne Cup with Red Cadeaux.

Night’s Watch has drawn out but he will no doubt be ridden quietly and look to have the last crack at them from down in the weights. He has been on the upward spiral all spring with his closing effort in the Caulfield Stakes another step forward on his way to this Grand Final.

From down in the weights his rating there stacks up and he certainly gives Darren Weir a strong hand in the race.


Racing and Sports



Caulfield

Saturday, 20th October 2018

8
16:40
(local)

Caulfield Cup (G1)

WT: 50.0kg Type: OPEN
AUD $5,150,000
2400m TURF SOFT
8
16:40
(local)
AUD $5,150,000
2400m SOFT

Caulfield Cup (G1)

WT: 50.0kg Type: OPEN
FP Horse, Age & Sex
Sire & Dam
Jockey
Trainer
SP
WT
1st 1. BEST SOLUTION (IRE) 4yo H
KODIAC (GB) - AL ANDALYYA (USA)
PAT COSGRAVE
SAEED BIN SUROOR
$12.00
57.5kg
GODOLPHIN

Sales Information

2nd 13. HOMESMAN (USA) 4yo G
WAR FRONT (USA) - MY ANNETTE (USA)
BEN MELHAM
LIAM HOWLEY
$9.00
53.0kg
N C Williams, Mr & Mrs L J Williams, A L & B A Green, B N Singer, P Mehrten, J & Mrs F Ingham, M Gudinski, V Sammartino, G T Ryan, Mrs V Ryan, P N Jacobsen, Heffernan Bloodstock (Mgr: D Heffernan) & M Wizel
3rd 2. THE CLIFFSOFMOHER (IRE) 4yo H
GALILEO (IRE) - WAVE (IRE)
HUGH BOWMAN
A P O'BRIEN
$6.50
56.5kg
N C Williams, Mrs & Mrs L J Williams & Coolmore (Mgr: T V Magnier)
4th 8. DURETTO (GB) 6yo G
MANDURO (GER) - LANDINIUM (ITY)
DWAYNE DUNN
ANDREW BALDING
$26.00
54.5kg
5th 7. THE TAJ MAHAL (IRE) 4yo H
GALILEO (IRE) - YOU'RESOTHRILLING (USA)
JAMES MCDONALD
LIAM HOWLEY
$16.00
55.0kg

Sales Information

6th 14. KINGS WILL DREAM (IRE) 4yo G
CASAMENTO (IRE) - ROAD HARBOUR (USA)
CRAIG WILLIAMS
DARREN WEIR
$5.50
53.0kg

Sales Information

7th 18. YOUNGSTAR (AUS) 4yo M
HIGH CHAPARRAL (IRE) - STARSPANGLED (IRE)
KERRIN MCEVOY
CHRIS WALLER
$7.50
51.5kg

Sales Information

8th 16. GALLIC CHIEFTAIN (FR) 5yo H
TAMAYUZ (GB) - KATERINI (FR)
DEAN YENDALL
DARREN WEIR
$17.00
52.5kg

Sales Information

9th 10. VENGEUR MASQUE (IRE) 6yo G
MONSUN (GER) - VENETIAN BEAUTY (USA)
PATRICK MOLONEY
MICHAEL MORONEY
$101.00
54.0kg
10th 11. VENTURA STORM (IRE) 5yo G
ZOFFANY (IRE) - SARAWATI (IRE)
REGAN BAYLISS
D & B HAYES & T DABERNIG
$31.00
54.0kg

Sales Information

11th 9. RED VERDON (USA) 5yo H
LEMON DROP KID (USA) - PORTO MARMAY (IRE)
ZAC PURTON
ED DUNLOP
$16.00
54.0kg

Sales Information

12th 5. SOUND (GER) 5yo H
LANDO (GER) - SKY DANCING (IRE)
JORDAN CHILDS
MICHAEL MORONEY
$51.00
55.5kg

Sales Information

13th 3. CHESTNUT COAT (JPN) 4yo H
HEART'S CRY (JPN) - WHITE VEIL (JPN)
Y KAWADA
Y YAHAGI
$26.00
55.5kg
14th 15. SOLE IMPACT (JPN) 6yo H
DEEP IMPACT (JPN) - CREAM ONLY (USA)
RYUSEI SAKAI
H TODA
$101.00
53.0kg
15th 6. ACE HIGH (AUS) 4yo H
HIGH CHAPARRAL (IRE) - COME SUNDAY (AUS)
DAMIEN OLIVER
DAVID PAYNE
$21.00
55.0kg

Sales Information

16th 17. NIGHT'S WATCH (NZ) 5yo G
REDWOOD (GB) - GLORY RUN (AUS)
BEN ALLEN
DARREN WEIR
$17.00
52.0kg

Sales Information

17th 12. MIGHTY BOSS (AUS) 4yo H
NOT A SINGLE DOUBT (AUS) - BULLION MANSION (AUS)
TIM CLARK
MICK PRICE
$101.00
53.5kg

Sales Information

18th 4. JON SNOW (NZ) 5yo H
IFFRAAJ (GB) - ORINDA (NZ)
DAMIAN LANE
MURRAY BAKER & ANDREW FORSMAN
$31.00
55.5kg

Sales Information