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Monaco prepares for the Melbourne Cup


by Bart Sinclair From: The Courier-Mail
TRAINER Mike Moroney is trying different tricks to keep his Melbourne Cup chance Monaco Consul's mind on the job.
As part of the ever changing preparation for the Cup on Tuesday, Moroney has booked a float trip to Moonee Valley tomorrow morning to give Monaco Consul a solid gallop with a mate.
It's the same pattern Moroney followed in 2000 with Second Coming, who went to Werribee for his main gallop before finishing third to stablemate Brew in the Cup.
"I think Monaco Consul is a similar horse to Second Coming. They are both natural stayers," Moroney said.
"I never really gave much thought to running him between the Caulfield Cup and the Cup. He had a month between runs when he won the Victoria Derby last year.
"He's better with at least two weeks between runs.
"To make him think a bit more I wanted to get him on to a float and gallop somewhere other than Flemington which he's used to. He's a stallion and sometimes he might not be concentrating 100 per cent on the job.
"I think he was a bit inclined to have a look when he drew inside barriers three times in a row before the Caulfield Cup."
Moroney has played with gear changes for Monaco Consul. In the Caulfield Cup he had a one-eyed blinker removed, and pacifiers and crossover noseband added.
The changes worked, with Monaco Consul coming back from a disappointing 12th in the Turnbull Stakes to finish a good third to Descarado and Harris Tweed. If the track is rated a heavy (10), stewards will not permit horses to wear pacifiers – a wire mesh cover over the eyes – because mud clods could stick to the mesh and significantly affect a horse's vision.
The strong prospect of rain from Derby Day through to the Cup will assist Monaco Consul, who is a superior wet footer.
Moroney is prepared to overlook Monaco Consul's Turnbull effort.
"I think it was the track that day. Descarado went ordinary as well and came back to win at Caulfield," Moroney said.
Moroney rates Shocking the horse to beat and has great respect for Geelong Cup winner Americain.
"He looked a bit like a show horse at Geelong and I'd suspect there should be good improvement in him," he said.
"I don't think there should be any fitness edge for another visitor, Manighar, who was pretty light in condition before the Caulfield Cup.
"It's very hard to line up the internationals. But Shocking looks the one to beat regardless. He might have more weight but he's a better horse this year and is a great horse at Flemington.
"I've never seen Harris Tweed look as good. He has to be a chance on his Caulfield Cup effort."
[28 Oct 10]

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