The much travelled English galloper Folkswood is on trial for a start in the 2018 Caulfield Cup when he lines up in the Group 3 $150,000 East Malvern Bendigo Bank MRC Foundation Club (Naturalism Stakes) (2000m) at Caulfield today.
Folkswood campaigned successfully during the 2017 Melbourne Spring Carnival with a win in the Listed $300,000 Cranbourne Cup (2025m) at Cranbourne before running third behind Winx and Humidor in the Group 1 $3m Ladbrokes Cox Plate (2040m) at The Valley on October 28.
Godolphin’s English trainer Charlie Appleby said that he would give consideration to another tilt at the Cox Plate if Folkswood failed to impress as a solid contender for the Group 1 $5m Stella Artois Caulfield Cup (2400m) at Caulfield on October 20.
“He ran well here in Australia on his last visit,” Appleby told the Herald Sun.
“And if he can reproduce that form he is going to be very competitive. He has settled in well.
“We hope this race will serve as his prep for the Group 1 Caulfield Cup.”
“Folkswood is in great shape I was very pleased with him before he left and the guys have been nothing but positive about him since he has arrived.”
“He has campaigned around the world now and we felt he put in a good performance in last year’s Cox Plate when he was third behind Winx.
“He has been here before and he adapts well to it.
“I am expecting a big run from him.”
Folkswood has had two runs at Meydan in Dubai since his 2017 Melbourne Spring Carnival campaign for a win in the Group 3 US$200,000 Dubai Millennium Stakes (2000m) at Meydan in Dubai on February 22 and a sixth in the Group 1 US$300,000 Jebel Hatta at Meydan in Dubai on March 10.
English jockey James Doyle will be riding Folkswood who will jump from gate thirteen in the capacity sixteen horse field.
Folkswood is on the second line of betting at $5 for the Naturalism Stakes with Ladbrokes.com.au behind the Darren Weir trained Night’s Watch at $2.60 while in the Caulfield Cup the English raider is marked at $21.
The winner of the Naturalism Stakes is exempt from the ballot for the 2018 Caulfield Cup.