Finishing outside the places just once over his impressive racing career to date, talented German raider Protectionist is reportedly in career-best condition leading into tomorrow’s feature race at Flemington and has the 2014 Melbourne Cup form to overcome the classy field of 23.
A standout performer of renowned German trainer Andreas Wohler’s current crop of runners, Protectionist finished a credible fourth in the Group 2 Herbert Power Stakes (2400m) in his Australian racing debut on October 11th.
Pleased with the Monsun entire’s performance in the Herbert Power despite it registering as his first result outside the minor places, Wohler is confident his horse has secured ideal Melbourne Cup form leading into his first attempt on Australia’s headline thoroughbred race.
“He ran well and has come on from that,” Wohler told the ABC.
“He knows his games and just keeps improving race by race.”
Having previously saddled two Cox Plate runners to no avail, Protectionist figures as Wohler’s first Melbourne Cup entrant and is drawn for success in the central barrier 11 with leading British jockey Ryan Moore confirmed for the ride.
“I’ve always watched it from home. It is a realty interesting race and a traditional race. It is great to come here with a horse that has a lovely chance,” Wohler added.
Comfortably winning a minor race over a mile in Germany on debut in September 2012, Protectionist finished a close second to Flamingo Star in the Group 3 Herzog Von Ratibor-Rennen (1710m) in just his second competitive tilt.
Continuing to impress over a short 2013 campaign highlighted by a four length victory in the Listed SWB Derby Trial (2212m) in June, the stallion out of Patineuse finished second in both the Listed Preis von Dahlwitz (2011) and Group 2 Preis Der Badischen Unternehmer (2212m) first-up this year before claiming back-to-back victories in the Group 2 Hansa-Preis (2413m) and Group 2 Prix Kergorlay (3000m) leading into his Australian debut.
The Melbourne Cup has been won by international raiders from New Zealand, France, Ireland and Japan previously, and Wohler is confident Protectionist’s lead-up Melbourne Cup form is capable of delivering Germany a maiden victory in Australia’s most famous race.
Following the scratching of Macedon Lodge runner Sea Moon this morning, Protectionist will line-up amongst a less-than capacity Melbourne Cup field of 23 runners in Flemington Race 7 tomorrow.
Required to carry 56.5kgs, Protectionist is currently available at odds of $7.50 for success in the 2014 Melbourne Cup; registering on the second line of betting alongside Lucia Valentina and Signoff at Ladbrokes Australia.