The 2014 Moonee Valley Gold Cup has been won by Prince Of Penzance at Moonee Valley this afternoon. In second place was Le Roi, followed by Au Revoir.
Race 5 on the Cox Plate Day schedule went off with a bang. It was a fantastic field, and the race order did not change a lot throughout.
Epingle began the race with a great break from the barriers, as did Precedence, who was quickly settled into second last by Glen Boss.
As the field settled Tommy Berry took Le Roi into the rails and maintained dominance over that position. There was a bit of shuffling amongst the field early on, but eventually they settled into place with Au Revoir leading, followed by Black Tycoon, Le Roi and Albonetti.
Glen Boss slowly brought Precedence up into fifth place on the rail, just behind Le Roi. Zac Purton sat Opinion just off Precedence, maintaining pace.
At the 800m Prince Of Penzance began pushing up and Dwayne Dunn chose to do the same with Epingle. Precedence got clear and made a strong run. However as the final 100m approached it became clear that Michelle Payne on Prince Of Penzance was not to be outdone as she brought the Pentire gelding home in stunning fashion.
An unfortunate tumble saw Chad Schofield unseated from Albonetti. However, Albonetti continued to run on apparently fine and Schofield was seen walking into the ambulance of his own accord.
This morning, the punters were favouring Opinion. On the second line of betting was Precedence with Au Revoir not far behind.
Following the race, Ms Payne was gushing with compliments for Prince Of Penzance. “It was tight around the corner but he just burst through there,” she said, perhaps paying too much credit to the horse for her own actions.
“We had to go to Plan B which was to get him to settle, and once we got into rhythm he was beautiful.” It was Ms Payne’s first ride for the day and she seemed pleased with the result.
Opinion used to race under renowned British trainer Sir Michael Stoute, and has been under Chris Waller‘s tutelage since the end of 2013. A half-length second place last start in the Group 1 Metropolitan Handicap left the Oasis Dream gelding hungry for a win. Unfortunately this was not to be.
Speaking last week, trainer Tony McEvoy said that Le Roi was in the right form for a win in the Moonee Valley Cup. However, there were no Melbourne Cup plans, with McEvoy saying “he hasn’t quite had the preparation for a Melbourne Cup for me.” Le Roi ran third in his last start in the Listed Cranbourne Cup (2025m). Today’s second place may force McEvoy to rethink his position, however at 58th on the ballot order Le Roi will need some serious penalties in the next week and a half to gain entry.
Trainer James Cummings has had Precedence pointed towards the Moonee Valley Cup throughout the entire Spring Racing Carnival. Speaking back in July, Cummings said, “we are going to have a good look at the Moonee Valley Cup again.” The nine year old gelding has ran in three Melbourne Cups and will no doubt contest a fourth given the opportunity. Precedence was 25th on the Melbourne Cup ballot order following first acceptances.
French raider Au Revoir had his eyes set on a Melbourne Cup start heading into today’s Moonee Valley Cup. He finished fourth in a field of talent in the Prix Foy at Longchamp in his last start in September. Today’s third will no doubt reinforce opinions that the horse is a genuine talent.
The 2014 Cox Plate kicks off at 4:40 AEST this evening. Check out the Cox Plate field and have a punt!
2014 Moonee Valley Cup Finishing Order
|1||6||PRINCE OF PENZANCE (NZ)||Darren Weir||Ms Michelle Payne||–||9||56kg||$10|
|2||5||LE ROI (GER)||Tony McEvoy||Tommy Berry||1.25L||1||56kg||$8|
|3||4||AU REVOIR (IRE)||Andre Fabre||Damien Oliver||1.75L||6||56.5kg||$4.80|
|4||9||EPINGLE (NZ)||Michael Kent||Dwayne Dunn||4.5L||3||54.5kg||$10|
|5||1||PRECEDENCE (NZ)||Bart & James Cummings||Glen Boss||5L||4||57kg||$6|
|6||7||OPINION (IRE)||Chris Waller||Zac Purton||5.1L||8||55kg||$3.50F|
|7||8||ANUDJAWUN (NZ)||Shaun Dwyer||Michael Rodd||7.35L||2||55kg||$61|
|8||2||BLACK TYCOON||Darren Weir||Brad Rawiller||11.35L||7||57kg||$41|
|LR||10||ALBONETTI||Sue Jaensch||Chad Schofield||–||5||53kg||$19|
|Scr||3||MR O’CEIRIN (NZ)||Ciaron Maher||Mark Zahra||Scr||0||Scr||Scr|