Godolphin’s English trainer Charlie Appleby rates Scottish as having some of the best form of the European stayers to contest the Group 1 $3m BMW Caulfield Cup (2400m) at Caulfield on Saturday.
Scottish is the winner of three of his last five starts in England and also boasts a second to the highly rated Aidan O’Brien trained Highland Reel in the in the Group 3 £100,000 Gordon Stakes (mile and a half) at Goodwood in July 2015.
Scottish is well in contention in the betting at $7.50 with Ladbrokes.com.au for the Caulfield Cup and comes to Australia on the back of a last start win in the Group 3 £85,000 Strensall Stakes (1 mile, 208 yards) at York in England on August 20.
“He has competed well at a mile and a half back in Europe, a second at Royal Ascot and then a second to Highland Reel at Goodwood,” Appleby told RSN’s Racing Ahead.
“You can tie a bit into the form of Exospheric and I would personally put him bang up there and if anything he is just marginally in front. He is coming to this race in good form on the back of that win there at York.”
“I think it is a tight race but as long as he can get a nice passage around there and give him every chance he is going to be bang there.”
Appleby arrived in Melbourne this morning and went straight to the quarantine facility at the Werribee International Horse Centre and was happy with the condition of his Caulfield Cup runner.
“It has all gone well so far. I got into the barn this morning and seen the horses out on the track there and couldn’t be any happier with the way they looked,” Appleby said.
“He has just come off the track there and has just cantered a mile around and he looks in great order. He has moved well and he looks in great shape.”
Appleby is confident that Scottish will perform well at the 2400m and can see Kerrin McEvoy putting the Teofilo gelding into a forward position from barrier seven in the eighteen horse field.
“The track conditions are there to suit. We are stepping up to the mile and a half,” Appleby said.
“The trip doesn’t concern me and I just think the style of racing will suit him.”
“He breaks well from the gates and he has got plenty of early pace if needed so. Just get him out there and get him into a nice rhythm.”
“I imagine that Kerrin will be close to the pace because that is style of running back in Europe so we want complicate things. We will let him hit the lids and hope that Kerrin can get him into a nice position.”
“He has progressed well back in Europe this year on that last start when he won the Strensall very well. He is a year old than when he meet Highland Reel and he had done well and is in a good place at the moment.”
The other European trained stayers to line up in the Caulfield Cup are the Irish galloper Sir Isaac Newton and the well performed German galloper Articus while English import Exopsheric is now under the care of Lee and Anthony Freedman at Flemington.
Crown Oaks winner Jameka sits at the top of the Caulfield Cup market order at $3.60 at Ladbrokes.com.au ahead of the Darren Weir trained Real Love at $7, English stayer Scottish at $7.50 and German stayer Articus at $9.
Market order for the Caulfield Cup at Ladbrokes.com.au: $3.60 Jameka, $7 Real Love, $7.50 Scottish, $9 Articus, $12 Sir Isaac Newton, $13 Exospheric, $16 Sir John Hawkwood, Sacred Master, $17 Tally, $26 Preferment, Our Ivanhowe, $31 Tarzino, $41 Set Square, $51 Pemberley, De Little Engine, $61 Almoonqith, $81 Go Dreaming, $201 Vengeur Masque.