Thursday 26 April 2018

Irish raider Simenon makes dawn run at Flemington ahead of Melbourne Cup

Simenon gallops on the course proper during trackwork at Flemington Racecourse this morning (Photo by Vince Caligiuri/Getty Images)
Simenon gallops on the course proper during trackwork at Flemington Racecourse this morning (Photo by Vince Caligiuri/Getty Images)
Ryan Moore guides the Willie Mullins trained Simenon to victory in the Queen Alexandra Stakes at Royal Ascot

Niall Cronin in Melbourne

IRISH raider Simenon stepped up his Melbourne Cup preparations when he made the trip to Flemington Park Racecourse today now that he’s guaranteed a run in next Tuesday’s race.

Shortly after light appeared over the city of Melbourne, the Willie Mullins trained six-year-old emerged onto the track proper and did a sharp piece of work under Emmet Mullins who described himself “very pleased” with the horses efforts.

Nephew of the trainer, Emmet has been Simenon’s satellite trainer at the quarantine base of Werribee where all the Spring Carnival international runners are stabled in the lead up to the coming weeks racing and Simenon made the half hour journey to get used to the surroundings at Flemington. 

“It’s nice just to get him away for a little stretch out here and get him used to the surroundings and thankfully everything went well,” Mullins said afterwards.

He added; “I know it was great to get him here today and nothing will compare to going up through that tunnel on raceday but at least he has been here now and done it and it’s a help and we need every bit of help we can get.”

Having been here to watch Simenon finish third in the Herbert Power Stakes on his only prep run for “the race that stops a nation” Willie Mullins returned to Ireland and is not expected to touch down in Melbourne again until Friday.

The champion jumps trainer confirmed earlier in the week that with Kerrin McEvoy, who rode the horse on his previous start in Australia, booked to ride for Godolphin, that Richard Hughes would now take up the ride on the sole Irish runner in the race which was previously won by Dermot Weld on two occasions.

Meanwhile, the Australia media think that leading trainer Gai Waterhouse could end a baron spell in the race and The Australian newspaper went as far as to say “Gai Waterhouse has one hand on the Melbourne Cup” in their lead story on Monday’s back page.

Waterhouse also has Tres Bleu in the race as she bids to win it for the very first time and she herself admitted; “I’ve never had a better chance going into a Melbourne Cup. He’s sensational,” referring to Fiorante who finished an eye-catching third in the Cox Plate last weekend.

Irish Independent

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