Jockey of the moment Craig Williams has picked up the ride on Alcopop in next Saturday’s Group 1 $1m Longines Mackinnon Stakes (2000m) at Flemington.
Williams takes over from the unlucky Dom Tourneur who has been aboard the eight year old for the majority of his races including last start when he ran a gallant second to Dunaden in the Group 1 $2.5m BMW Caulfield Cup (2400m) at Caulfield.
Ironically it was Williams who denied a Caulfield Cup win for the Jake Stephens trained stayer when he brought Dunaden with a well-timed run from last to first to claim victory.
Alcopop isn’t in the Group 1 $6m Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington on November 6 and the Mackinnon will be his last run this Spring with Stephens hoping to go one better in next year’s Caulfield Cup.
“We might leave him alone in the Autumn and have another go at the spring with him as a nine year old,” Stephens said.
“You get those harder tracks in the autumn. He likes it firm for his turn of foot but it doesn’t help his joints so missing the Autumn might be the ticket to a bit more longevity for him.”
“In the past he’s raced at his best in the Spring and in the Autumn he hasn’t done a hell of a lot over the years so we might avoid it.”
Stephens is happy with the way Alcopop has recovered from his tough second in the Caulfield Cup and will send him to the paddock after the Mackinnon.
“All the signs are he’s pulled up well so we’ll look to the Mackinnon and that will do him,” Stephens said.
“The Caulfield Cup was the one we were targeting so if he can stay up for one more it will be a bonus.”