A significant drop in weight has put the James Cummings trained Gaulois in contention for the Group 2 $250,000 Fugen Construction Villiers Stakes (1600m) at Randwick on Saturday.
Gaulois has been carrying hefty weights in restricted class at his last two recent outings and was narrowly beaten into second place last start with 59kg on his back in a 1500m BenchMark 88 Handicap at Rosehill on December 1.
Cummings was pleased with Gaulois latest effort and the Street Cry gelding drops 6kg and will carry the 53kg minimum in the Villiers Stakes with Corey Brown in the saddle.
“This is a target race for him and he arrives here off a personal best over 1500m at Rosehill last start,” Cummings said.
Gaulois was a winner over the Randwick Mile three starts back in a BenchMark 92 Handicap with 54,5kg and Brown is certain to give the gelding a good run from barrier six in the fourteen horse Villiers Stakes field.
Gaulois is on the third line of betting for the Villiers Stakes at $8 with Ladbrokes.com.au and Cummings will also saddle up Interlocuter ($11) and Duca Valentinois ($26).
Interlocuter is coming off a last start win in the $150,000 Goulburn Cup (1600m) at Goulburn on November 25 and will jump from barrier four with James McDonald in the saddle while the out of form Duca Valentinois will race with the blinkers back on with Glyn Schofield to ride from gate five.
“He (Duca Valentinois) has improvement to make on his last start, but he’s enjoyed training in blinkers lately and if he can recapture his form from Moonee Valley I’d be happy,” Cummings said.
The Anthony and Edward Cummings trained Sky Boy is the firming Villiers Stakes favourite at $3.10 and is in line for his fifth straight win after working his way up through the restricted ranks.
Christian Reith has been aboard Sky Boy for his last three wins and gets the ride again and the four year old will jump from barrier nine.