Estimate returned to winning form with a strong performance in the Group 2 Doncaster Cup (3621m) at Doncaster overnight, but the talented stayer is unlikely to make the trip to Australia for the 2014 Melbourne Cup.
Estimate was given a patient ride by jockey Ryan Moore and she responded well when asked for an extra effort in the final stages to record a comfortable victory from Whiplash Willier and Kalann – her first since she took out the Gold Cup during the 2013 Royal Ascot Meeting.
The Queen’s Racing Manager John Warren told the media after the race that the Group 1 Melbourne Cup (3200m) was one of three possible options for Estimate, but he revealed that the Group 3 Long Distance Cup (3200m) at Ascot in October and the Group 1 Prix du Cadran (4000m) in France were more likely targets for the daughter of Monsun.
“There are only three options – Ascot, Paris and Melbourne, but my hunch is she probably won’t go to Australia,” Warren said.
“Ascot could be favourite in the sense that the Queen could see her race again, but Ascot is two miles, whereas the French race is further.”
Estimate was included in the 2014 Melbourne Cup nominations and Warren revealed that the ‘race that stops a nation’ was a genuine option for the five-year-old after she finished second the Group 2 Lonsdale Cup (3299m) at York on August 22, but he said after the Doncaster Cup that were a number of reasons why the Melbourne Cup was not an appropriate race for Estimate.
“Obviously the travelling is a huge ask as well, so there are many complexities,” Warren said.
“The tempo of the race in Australia is not quite what this filly is about.
“This filly is about sticking it out and Australia can be a bit stop-start.
“I know there’s been huge pressure from the Australians for the Queen to have a runner, understandably, which would be amazing to do and for so many reasons it’s good.”
Trainer Michael Stoute, who has previously had Distinction (2004 and 2005) and Daliapour (2002) in the Melbourne Cup, also voiced his concerns about running Estimate in the Melbourne Cup and believes that the Flemington track would likely be too firm for the talented staying mare.
Estimate is currently available at 2014 Melbourne Cup odds of $41 with Ladbrokes Australia.