Curren Mirotic is out to 2016 Melbourne Cup odds of $34, but jockey Tommy Berry remains optimistic about the chances of the Japanese stayer in the Group 1 event at Flemington on Tuesday.
Curren Mirotic was available at a quote of $26 when the 2016 Melbourne Cup field was released yesterday afternoon, but there has been no support for the Heart’s Cry gelding and he has been the biggest drifter in betting with Ladbrokes.
The veteran gelding stamped himself as a Melbourne Cup favourite with a close finish behind Kitasan Black in the Group 1 Tenno Sho (3200m) at Kyoto on May 1, but he has been an inconsistent performer throughout his racing career and he failed to fire in the Group 2 Sankei Sho All Comers (2200m) at Nakayama on September 25.
Berry admits that Curren Mirotic can be inconsistent, but he remains confident that the Tenno Sho runner-up is good enough to deliver him a maiden victory in the Melbourne Cup.
“He is well looked after and he is lightly raced,” Berry told the media.
“He looks in great condition and doesn’t look or feel like a nine year old.
“He is an older horse and he can have his off day and I am not going to lie about that.
“He can put in some pretty poor performances and we have seen that through his preparations, but I just love that every time he gets to 3200, he rarely is disappointing.
“I am looking forward to him stepping out to that trip.”
Japanese stayer Fame Game was beaten as a short-priced favourite in the Melbourne Cup last year after being unable to get into the race Berry is adamant that he does not want the same to happen to Curren Mirotic.
Berry revealed that he plans to ride Curren Mirotic aggressively in the Melbourne Cup and he plans to put his mount right in the race at the top of the straight.
“I have spoken to the connections and I said if I go out hard and put the pace on from the half mile (800m) and he runs last, well it’s not my fault,” Berry said.
“That’s what they want and they have given me the confidence to do that and if doesn’t work, they are happy with that but that’s the only way he can win.”
Hartnell is currently available at Melbourne Cup odds of $5 with Ladbrokes and he remains a clear favourite from Oceanographer ($7), Jameka ($8), Bondi Beach ($9.50), Almandin ($15) and Big Orange ($16).