Victoria Derby winning jockey Hugh Bowman believes Melbourne Cup late scratching Mourayan would have ran in the top six if he had started.
Today Mourayan is out to prove that high rating when he takes on Americain in the Group 2 $350,000 Zipping Classic (2400m) at Sandown-Hillside.
While the Melbourne Cup fourth Americain ($1.45) is a hot odds on favourite, on Bowman’s assessment the Robert Hickmott trained Mourayan ($5) owned has a true chance of winning.
“He’d have run top half-dozen, for sure,” Bowman said.
“The way the Cup panned out, with the track suiting horses coming home from back in the field, he might have struggled to win but he’d have given them something to run down.”
Bowman said Mourayan was one-paced but had endless stamina.
“He’s a really good mover but he can’t quicken,” he said.
Mourayan was scratched on Melbourne Cup morning after a minor shoeing problem.
He had pulled up slightly lame from the previous Saturday’s MacKinnon Stakes the second to Glass Harmonium.
“I was walking into the track with Chris Munce (on Cup morning),” Bowman said.
“As soon as I heard over the course PA that one had come out, I just knew it was mine,.
“I wanted to get a vet certificate myself and go straight to the bar for a beer.”
Bowman’s spring highlight was winning the Victoria Derby aboard Sangster.