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Monaco Consul strives for Caulfield Cup glory

Just the one runner at Caulfield on Saturday but in the right race! The feature event, the $2.5 million Gr.1 Caulfield Cup - Australia's second richest handicap.
And we could not be happier with the horse we have in the big race. Already a dual Gr.1 winner - taking out last year's Spring Champion Stakes and VRC Derby - Monaco Consul is a horse with the necessary mix of class and stamina.
Whilst somewhat disappointing at his most recent outing in the Turnbull Stakes, he did have excuses - drawing an inside gate and never really being happy with horses around him.
This time he has barrier 15 which Michael Moroney feels is perfect.
"It is the right draw," he said, "this way around he just doesn't like being on the inside of other horses. We will try to get him to the outside like he did in the Derby."
Whilst wary of a track that is very heavy, Moroney is confident that Monaco Consul will be advantaged by the rain Melbourne has had this week.
"You would think it would be a help rather than a hinderance," he said, "although the jury is still out on whether he likes it really wet."
"I'd be a bit worried if it was really heavy," he said. "He is a good clean actioned horse. He did win the Spring Champion on a heavy track but it was pretty loose and a lot of horses were getting through it.'
"Caulfield was a bit rough yesterday - Brazilian Pulse didn't handle it which really surprised us."
"In saying that, we prefer a track with the sting out than a firm one."
A return to the old gear should also be of benefit to Monaco Consul - changes made in the Turnbull which just didn't work.
"He will have the pacifiers on again - being a stallion he can look around a bit so they should help - it's his Gr.1 gear!"
Respectful of the strength of the opposition, Moroney is however happy with Monaco Consul's 54kg - "he was not well weighted in relation to the others in the Turnbull," he noted, "but he looks nicely in now, he has for example a 3kg turnaround on Shocking."
Prepared to forgive his charge's below best run in the Turnbull, Moroney recalled Eskimo Queen disappointing in the same event on her way to the Caulfield Cup.
Sadly she was not to take her place in the big race, going down in the gates after Maldivian played up - the mare thinking the barriers were going to open and charging ahead. She was nicely primed for the day so it was a race that got away on us. Hopefully in 2010 we atone!
[13 Oct 10]


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