Barman gets shot at both the cups
IN-FORM trainer Chris Waller's promising stayer Who Shot Thebarman is guaranteed a start in the Caulfield and Melbourne Cups after being penalised for his strong win in Saturday's Group Three Bart Cummings Stakes (2500m) at Flemington.
Racing Victoria assistant handicapper Neil Jennings has penalised the lightly-raced Kiwi 1.5kg in the Caulfield Cup (2400m), lifting his weight to 53kg, while adding an extra 0.5kg to his Melbourne Cup impost (now 55kgs), which should ensure he gets a start in both races.
"He is a lightly raced stayer who now has built an imposing record at 2400m and beyond having won four of his five runs in that distance range, including three at Group level," Jennings said.
Who Shot Thebarman has surged into calculations in the betting for the Cups, now on the third line of betting with Ladbrokes for the Caulfield Cup with Dear Demi and Ambivalent at $13. Turnbull Stakes winner Lucia Valentina heads the market at $6 with Japanese visitor Bande next at $8.
The Offer is still the Melbourne Cup favourite at $11 from Bande and Lucia Valentina at $13. Who Shot Thebarman is on the next line at $15 with another Japanese runner, Admire Rakti.
Two other Waller runners, Junoob and Cox Plate-bound He's Your Man, were also penalised 1.5kg in both the Caulfield and Melbourne Cups following Group One victories in Sydney on Saturday in the Metropolitan (2400m) and Epsom Handicap (1600m) respectively.
Waller, who is already sweeping through the Group One features races this Spring, could have as many as five runners in the Caulfield Cup.
Junoob is headed that way, while He's Your Man is likely to contest the WFA Cox Plate where he will clash with stablemates Royal Descent and Foreteller.
Royal Descent earned the tag as Australia's unluckiest racehorse on Saturday, registering her fourth
consecutive second placing at the top level in a very tight photo finish at Randwick.
Prior to being beaten by He's Your Man, the mare had finished runner-up to stablemate Sacred Falls in the Group One George Main Stakes, second to another stablemate, Hawkspur, in the Group One Chelmsford Stakes (1600m) and was beaten by Tiger Tees in the Group Two Warwick Stakes (1400m).
"She is racing very well and her whole preparation has been geared towards the Cox Plate so we can't get cold feet now," Waller said after the mare's latest heart-breaking defeat.