The 2014 Cox Plate odds of Fawkner have lengthened in the past 24 hours, but the Lloyd Williams-owned galloper is still a clear favourite to take out the Australasian Weight-For-Age Championship at Moonee Valley this afternoon.
Fawkner has been favourite in 2014 Cox Plate betting markets since he scored an impressive win in the Group 1 Caulfield Stakes (2000m) at Caulfield on October 11 and he opened at a quote of $4 when the final field was released on Tuesday morning, but he has drifted through the week and he is now out to Cox Plate odds of $4.60.
The Reset gelding started his spring campaign with a second place finish in the Group 1 Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m) at Flemington on September 13 before his Caulfield Stakes victory and owner Lloyd Williams believes that is the right form line for the 2014 Cox Plate.
“He is in good order,” Williams told Sky Racing HQ.
“We haven’t done anything this morning apart from give him a walk and we can’t improve him at this stage and it is just a matter of whether he is good enough.
“He is in top shape and if anybody wants to back him there is certainly nothing wrong with him.”
There is great expectation that The Cleaner will set a very quick tempo in the early stages of the Cox Plate, but Williams does not believe jockey Steven Arnold will do anything silly on the cult hero out of the gates and will instead ramp up the speed at the 800 metre mark.
Williams said that Fawkner has been trained to settle closer to the speed this preparation and he confirmed that he would be happy to see jockey Nick Hall settle the seven-year-old just behind the leaders in the early stages of the race.
“Steven is a very good judge of pace and you couldn’t have a better rider on him than Steven Arnold,” Williams said.
“He won’t be going that hard I wouldn’t think and once you get around the half mile corner that is when Steven will probably put his foot down.
“I guess Side Glance is going to go forward and I guess one of Gai’s three-year-olds will go forward and there will be an unusual one that goes forward as well; the Cox Plate is never run to someone’s speed map.
“We have trained this horse this time to be taking up a position as you would have noticed in the Makybe Diva and the Caulfield Stakes and he will continue to do that.
“He has drawn a nice barrier and he will be in the first three.”
Fawkner remains a clear favourite in Cox Plate betting from Criterion ($7), Adelaide ($7) and Sacred Falls ($7.50).