Leading form analyst Daniel O’Sullivan has Happy Trails on top of his 2015 Australian Cup tips and he believes that the talented gelding will prove tough to beat in the Group 1 event at Flemington tomorrow.
Happy Trails has had an ideal preparation for the Group 1 Australian Cup (2000m), after finishing sixth in the Group 1 Orr Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on February 14 and second in the Group 2 Peter Young Stakes (1800m) at Caulfield on February 28, and O’Sullivan told RSN that the Good Journey gelding is ready to produce a peak performance to score his fourth win at Group 1 level in the Australian Cup.
“The Peter Young was a strong high pressure race and he finished well for second there behind Mourinho,” O’Sullivan said.
“He has a very good pattern of improving his figures third-up and there is no doubt that he has been set for this race all along.
“He is one that has the ability to escalate to a rating beyond what most of these are capable of achieving outside of Protectionist’s Melbourne Cup win.
“I would expect him to hit a peak tomorrow and from barrier four he can get a good run just around midfield and be well positioned to stake his claim.
“I think that he is going to be very hard to beat.”
While O’Sullivan believes that Happy Trails will be hard to beat in the Australian Cup, he feels that Chris Waller-trained Foreteller represents excellent value at his current Australian Cup odds of $9.50.
Foreteller produced a strong effort to finish sixth behind Contributer in the Group 1 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) at Warwick Farm on February 28 and O’Sullivan feels that the Dansili gelding is also ready to peak third-up in the Australian Cup.
“A horse with a very similar pattern is Foreteller,” O’Sullivan said.
“He comes down from Sydney and his run last start behind Contributer in the Chipping Norton was a good solid run.
“He is going to stack up a pretty strong form reference and, like Happy Trails, Foreteller has a pretty clear form record in that he goes ahead third-up.
“He has met Happy Trails a through times in the past and narrowly beaten him and had a couple of other defeats.
“They are very similar in that respects.”
Happy Trails is currently available at 2015 Australian Cup odds of $4.60 with Ladbrokes and is a clear favourite from Protectionist ($5.50), Foreteller ($9.50) and Spillway ($10).