Premier Victorian trainer Peter Moody is looking for another Western Australian feature race win with his stayer Macedonian in the Group 2 $492,000 Golden River Development – Perth Cup (2400m) at Ascot on January 1.
The 2010 Sandown Cup winner, Macedonian, is among the thirty-two nominations for Perth’s feature staying race which also includes highly ranked locals, Ranger, Mr Moet and Playing God.
Moody took out the 2009 Group 1 $500,000 WATC Derby (2400m) at Ascot with Markus Maximus in one of his rare visits to the west and Macedonian will give the leading trainer a chance to add to his Perth success.
Racing And Wagering Western Australia racing manager and chief handicapper David Hunter is delighted to have attracted a well performed galloper from the Moody stable to boost the quality of the runners for the Festival Of Perth Racing.
“We’re delighted to have a stayer with Macedonian’s credentials in the cup,” Hunter said.
“In addition to winning the Sandown Cup, he’s been an Adelaide Cup third placegetter. Macedonian confirmed his class when runner-up in The Lexus at Flemington’s spring carnival last year.
“There was a lot of merit in his performances to finish fifth in a Sydney Cup and eighth in a Caulfield Cup.”
Macedonian is having his second run back from a lengthy spell at Flemington on Saturday after finishing fifth to Le Roi over 2000m at Caulfield on December 1.
Even though Macedonian hasn’t won since taking out the 2010 $125,000 Sandown Cup (3200m) at Sandown, the Zabeel gelding was runner-up to Niwot in last year’s Group 3 $250,000 The Lexus Stakes (2500m) at Flemington.
This year’s renewed format will see the Perth Cup weights released after the running of the major lead up race, the weight for age Group 2 $225,000 LD Total – C.B. Cox Stakes (2100m) at Ascot on December 22.
“This will be the first time we’ve delayed releasing Perth Cup handicaps until only eight days before the race,” Hunter said.
“Framing of cup weights will not be finalised until Cox Stakes form is taken into account.
“It means we can avoid imposing late penalties.
“Late entries can be lodged until December 24.”
Hunter said that local Group 1 winners Mr Moet and Playing God will head the weights when they are finalised on December 24.
“At this stage, Mr Moet and Playing God are in line to be the cup top weights on 59kg,” Hunter said..
“I will be reluctant to exceed 59kg when allocating the topweight.”
Mr Moet and stablemates Playing God and God Has Spoken will head the markets along with Macedonia who could firm with a solid performance at Flemington on the weekend.
Mr Moet has had a terrific Perth carnival and after winning the Group 1 $1m Carlton Draught-Railway Stakes (1600m) at Ascot on November 24 first up, ran another first class race when runner-up to Luckygray in the Group 1 $500,000 TABTouch.Mobi – Kingston Town Classic (1800m) at Ascot last Saturday.
And even though Playing God hasn’t won since winning his second Kingston Town Classic last year, the five year old has run two respectable races at his last two starts with a fourth in the Railway Stakes and a sixth in this year’s Kingston Town.