Amelie’s Star will head to the 2017 Melbourne Cup after she recorded an impressive victory in the 2017 The Bart Cummings at Flemington this afternoon.
Macedon Lodge-trained Granddukeoftuscany took up the running in the early stages of The Bart Cummings and he ensured that the race was run at a very genuine tempo, while Amelie’s Star settled in the middle of the field.
Melbourne Cup winner Almandin and Naturalism Stakes winner Harlem both looked as though they were cruising into the race, but Amelie’s Star was always going better and she put a gap on her rivals when she was asked for an extra effort by Damian Lane.
Lane said that he was disappointed with his previous rides on Amelie’s Star and he was pleased to be able to atone on a horse that he believes is a genuine 2017 Melbourne Cup contender.
“She is a lovely mare,” Lane said.
“I actually thought that there may have been a rider change after my last two efforts on her, but I was lucky enough that connections gave me another go on her.
“She was too good today.
“I do a lot of work with her at home, so I know her very well and she is quality mare.
“If they get her to the Melbourne Cup now she will run well.
“She has pulled up well today and she sprints well off a staying tempo.
Trainer Darren Weir confirmed that Amelie’s Star will press on to the Melbourne Cup, but he is unsure the exact path that the talented staying mare will follow to ‘the race that stops a nation’.
“Her record suggested that the step-up in trip today was going to be a big plus,” Weir said.
“Barriers are the big thing in racing – we got the bad barrier last start and had to go back.
“We got in a position where it was just mathematically impossible to win and today from the good draw the plan was to be in the first half and we got the best run of any horse in the race.
“She has had a beautiful preparation and she will have to run somewhere now between now and the Melbourne Cup.
“We will have to map out what we do, but she is very sound and she has lots of miles in her legs.
“We just need to gets thing right between now and the Melbourne Cup and who knows what will happen.”
Almandin went into the Melbourne Cup as an odds-on favourite, but he didn’t show the dash he showed in the JRA Cup last start and he missed the placings.