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Timeform Recap - 2018 Caulfield Cup

Timeform recap of the 2018 Caulfield Cup won by Best Solution for trainer Saeed Bin Suroor and jockey Pat Cosgrave.

Timeform Recap - 2018 Caulfield Cup

Timeform recap of the 2018 Caulfield Cup won by Best Solution for trainer Saeed Bin Suroor and jockey Pat Cosgrave.

Best Solution fends off Homesman to win the 2018 Caulfield Cup
Best Solution fends off Homesman to win the 2018 Caulfield Cup Picture:Racing and Sports

They (whoever they are) say that pace makes the race and that was certainly the case in the 2018 Caulfield Cup where a lack of pace early in the race played a big part in the outcome.

That's not to say that the winner Best Solution Horseform wasn't a worthy one. He has now won four on the bounce across three countries, the last three of those wins at Group 1 level, and boasts a Timeform rating of 125 - the rating he produced to win the Cup on Saturday.


While the pace of the race might suggest that Best Solution got away with one on Saturday they don't suggest that he wouldn't have walked away with the highest rating from the race whichever way the result went.

Sectional times point to far too many fireworks being packed into the final third of the race. The first ten home had finishing speeds upwards of 107% from the 800m mark with Youngstar Horseform Ventura Storm Horseform and The Cliffsofmoher Horseform over 108%.

Ventura Storm and Youngstar were too far from the steady tempo to ever really be a winning chance - their hopes were all but gone by halfway - but the sectionals do suggest that The Cliffsofmoher, who ran to a Timeform rating of 119 for the second time in a week at Caulfield, would/could/should have been in the head-bobbing finish alongside Homesman and Best Solution on another day.

The feeling is that there is plenty more to come from The Cliffsofmoher and that line of thinking seems to have been floating around for some time. He was thought of highly enough to start 7/4 favourite in an Eclipse in 2017 and finished third in the same race this year - a race invariably for those from the top shelf.

There will certainly need to be more to come if he is going to be any match for his Herbert Power-winning stablemate Yucatan Ire Horseform in the Melbourne Cup in just over two weeks time.

A touch surprisingly the raw times at Caulfield on Saturday suggested the track was into the heavy range. By Racing and Sports' calculations, running to standard time at Caulfield on Cup Day would have taken a horse 45lbs superior to what was required to run the same time on Guineas Day.

This is described in pounds because a pound is tangible and constant while the value of a length differs over different distances, different tempos, different conditions, but for ease of understanding lets say - to run the same raw time at Caulfield on Cup Day a horse would have had to run somewhere in the area of 15 lengths better than on Caulfield Guineas Day.

Even with such a discrepancy in conditions from one week to the next accounted for, Yucatan produced an overall time rating of 110 when winning his Herbert Power compared to Best Solution's 93 in the Caulfield Cup, and he did it throttling down.

As mentioned, the early lack of pace in the Caulfield Cup largely contributed to the plain overall time but it's not as though the full 2400m of the Herbert Power was spent revving up past the red line either. Yucatan ran to his speed figure of 110 finishing quickly - 104% from the 800m - and that was despite James McDonald putting his feet up on the dashboard over the final 200m.

It's quite amazing to think that it has now been 10 years since the Caulfield Cup has produced the Melbourne Cup winner while three (Prince Of Penzance, Protectionist, Shocking) have come through the Herbert Power in that timespan.

The Herbert Power may be the Caulfield Cup's little brother but once again it looks the bigger, stronger piece of form heading to Flemington where it's champion Yucatan quite rightly heads the betting for the famous Tuesday two miler.

Racing And Sports




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