Progressive galloper Berisha has earnt a ballot-exempt entry into the 2016 Caulfield Cup after he took out the 2015 Mornington Cup this afternoon.
Tom Melbourne started the Mornington Cup as a clear favourite and he took up the running in the early stages of the race, while Daniel Moor elected to settle Berisha at the tail of the field.
Tom Melbourne was one of the first horses beaten and it was Big Memory that took up the running and looked like the winner, but Berisha savaged the line in the final 100 metres of the race to record the biggest win of his racing career to date.
Assistant trainer Stuart Webb admitted after the Mornington Cup that Robert Smerdon was not confident that Berisha would run out a strong 2400 metres, but he was thrilled to see the promising stayer run out the trip so strongly.
“Somebody who trains him had a bit of a query on him at the trip, so Robert will be happy to be wrong,” Webb said.
“To do that out of a terrible barrier and from all the way back is outstanding.
“This is only our third prep with him and hopefully he keeps improving.”
Moor rode Berisha exactly to instructions in the Mornington Cup and he said that he could not believe how much horse he had left underneath him when the field turned into the straight.
The talented hoop is keen to stick with Berisha during his 2016 Spring Racing Carnival campaign and he joked that he will do whatever it takes to ride him in the 2016 Caulfield Cup.
“Probably down by the bend when we straightened up in the lane I knew that I had a decent amount of horse underneath me,” Moor said.
“They had gone to my judgement quite slick and we had a really good resting run back on the fence right back out the back.
“They were the instructions to ride him to get the trip and he ran out the very well.
“I appreciate the opportunities from Robert Smerdon and I am glad to repay him today.
“We will keep the big boys away and I’ll stand out the front of his box with a baseball bat.”
The stewards reported at the conclusion of the race that Tom Melbourne had been galloped on during the run and is now likely to head to the spelling paddock.