The 2013 Melbourne Cup preparations for Gai Waterhouse-trained Tres Blue have really started to heat up and jockey Tommy Berry is delighted with the improvement the Northern Hemisphere three-year-old has shown since arriving in Australia.
Tres Blue has been given a number of tough gallops at the International Equine Centre at Werribee in the past week; with Waterhouse desperate to increase the toughness of the Anabaa Blue entire before he runs in the Melbourne Cup – as she did with Fiorente last year who flew home to finish second behind Green Moon.
Berry has partnered Tres Blue in each of this trackwork gallops this week and the pair combined yesterday to do a couple of laps of the Werribee track at half pace.
The rising jockey could not be happier with Tres Blue heading into the 2013 Melbourne Cup at Flemington next Tuesday and believes the Round Table Racing-owned galloper has all the attributes needed to perform well in ‘the race that stops nation’.
“He’s flying,” Berry told TVN.
“He sustains a run; at the 1000 metres he really towed me into the work and from the 600 metres he ran good time and he was strong on the line.
“He had his head down and his attitude is good.”
Tres Blue already has a great deal of racing under his belt this season and has performed strongly at the highest level of racing in Europe.
He made his Group 1 debut in the Sparda Deutsches Derby (2400m) at Hamburg in July and finished a narrow second behind Lucky Speed before recording impressive victories in the Group 3 Prix De Reux and the Group 2 Grand Prix De Deauville in France.
Tres Blue has improved at each start this preparation and even Alain de Royer Dupre, the trainer of leading 2013 Melbourne Cup contender Verema, believes that the progressive stayer has better form than his own galloper.
“Tres Blue has better quality than my filly and in quarantine he is better than my filly,” Royer Dupre told TVN.
Berry has had to work hard to get down to the 51 kilos required to ride Tres Blue in the 2013 Melbourne Cup but believes the light-weight is one of the major reasons that his mount is one of the leading contenders for the $6 million Group 1 event.
“Everyone is forgetting he’s only got 51 on his back; it’s not that much weight,” Berry said.
Tres Blue is currently available at Melbourne Cup odds of $19; with Mount Athos ($7.50) remaining a narrow favourite from Fiorente ($8).