Wednesday 18 October 2017

Aussies keep Cup at home as Irish-breds dominate

EUROPE'S raiders were out of luck in the Melbourne Cup, but there was some consolation for the breeding industry here as the first seven home were all Irish-bred.

Green Moon -- formerly trained by Harry Dunlop in England, but now with Robert Hickmott -- and jockey Brett Prebble ensured Australia's greatest racing prize remained on home soil for the first time in three years.

A length behind the son of Montjeu in second was another export in Fiorente, on his first run since moving from Michael Stoute to Gai Waterhouse, while Colm O'Donoghue came home in third aboard Marco Botti's Jakkalberry.

From there on, though, it was a case of varying degrees of hard-luck stories, with the previous two French winners, Dunaden and Americain, failing to figure in a race run at a very slow pace.

Luca Cumani's Mount Athos charged home from a hopeless position to finish fifth as the raiders were all undone by Glencadam Gold slowing things down from the front.

Cumani's other contender My Quest For Peace was 10th, and he said: "The race was run in a strange way and the slow pace didn't suit our horses."

The only European runner to reach prominence at any stage was Dermot Weld's Galileo's Choice which weakened to 20th. "We had thunder and lightning but, unfortunately, no rain," said Weld. "If we'd had a drop of rain he could have been in the first three."

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