Gatewood continued the trend of international success in the Geelong Cup today and in doing so improved his chances of gaining a Melbourne Cup berth.
Owned by Australia’s OTI racing, the John Gosden-trained four-year-old currently sits in 41st position in the Melbourne Cup order of entry but today’s win could see him receive a penalty to elevate him into the field.
With champion jockey Glen Boss aboard, Gatewood was positioned just outside the leader Back In Black and a lack of pressure saw the race run at just a moderate tempo.
As they rounded the turn it became a sprint for home and it was the son of Galileo who showed the best finishing ability to beat home Peter Moody-trained mare Chateau Margaux and French stayer Brigantin.
Connections were forced to enter Gatewood in today’s race to attempt Melbourne Cup qualification after he finished seventh in the Herbert Power Stakes.
OTI’s Terry Henderson praised the tactical nous of Boss and Gosden who developed the perfect plan to give the entire the best chance of winning.
“John and Glen had a good chat last night. They gave the information to each other, they came up with that plan and it worked perfectly,” Henderson said.
“It’s a little unusual that a European horse would run three times in five weeks but it looks as though it might happen.”
Boss showed surprise at just how quickly Gatewood was able to sprint home and gave him a glowing endorsement heading towards the Melbourne Cup.
“He sprinted very quickly then there was a moment there where he just plateaued for about 100 metres,” Boss said.
“Then about 200 metres from the line he just got going again and ran through the line.
“He’s very good on his feet this horse. He’s very nimble. That’s going to take him a long way because you need that type of horse in our hustle-bustle races.”
Boss is not yet committed to a Melbourne Cup ride and said he would “let the dust settle” before discussing plans with Gosden in the near future.