3 minute read
Trainer Peter Moody has declared Incentivise is at the top of his game as the staying sensation attempts to extend his historic winning streak in the $7.75 million Lexus Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington on Tuesday.
Incentivise has won nine races in succession and including a hat-trick of Group 1 wins in the Makybe Diva Stakes, Turnbull Stakes and Caulfield Cup.
His outstanding run of form has him challenging two of the timeless records set by the legendary Phar Lap when he scored his famous win in the 1930 Melbourne Cup.
Phar Lap's Cup win was his eighth in succession, the longest winning sequence of any Cup winner in the race's long history. The mighty chestnut started at 11/8 on ($1.70) and remains the shortest favourite in Cup history.
If Incentivise takes the Melbourne Cup, he will break Phar Lap's record for most successive wins.
After Saturday's barrier draw, Incentivise got into as short as $2.30 and was set to start the shortest favourite since Phar Lap but has eased out to $2.80.
Moody said Incentivise has continue to do well since the gelding demoralised his opposition in the Caulfield Cup.
"Incentivise has done very little fast work since his Caulfield Cup win, he hasn't needed it," Moody said.
"His health and wellbeing are very good so all roads lead to Flemington Tuesday.
"Let's hope he has a bit of luck and he can continue to build on what has been a wonderful carnival for him so far."
Incentivise's rise from relative obscurity after three unplaced runs has been stunning as he went on a winning roll through the Brisbane winter carnival culminating with the Group 3 Tattersalls Cup at Eagle Farm in June when he won by a massive 12 lengths.
Moody then took over the training of Incentivise who has captured three Group 1 wins this spring, emerging as a rising champion of Australian racing.
Timeform's ratings genius, Gary Crispe, said Incentivise has a rating figure that is the reserve of elite racehorses.
"Incentivise comes into the Melbourne Cup with a Timeform rating of 129," Crispe said.
"History shows that since 2000, four horses have gone into a Melbourne Cup with a Timeform rating of 129 or higher – but just one, So You Think with a Timeform figure of 133 has managed to place. He ran third in a strong renewal of the Cup in 2010 behind Americain on a deteriorating track.
"However, a Timeform ratings profile review of the field in this Cup reveals a low (overall) rating with only Incentivise rated higher than 125.
"This opens the door for Incentivise to win the Cup, but his task will not be easy and certainly at the current odds-on offer does not represent value for punters."
Crispe nominated Delphi as the stayer most likely to deny Incentivise's bid to become the 12th horse to complete the Caulfield Cup-Melbourne Cup double.
"Delphi scored a decisive win in the Herbert Power Stakes and he looms as a major threat if you can put his failure in the Caulfield Cup aside," Crispe said.
"The former Irish stayer had excellent form prior to coming down under. The one run that stands out was his 116 Timeform rated victory in the Irish St Leger trial Stakes over 2816m where he defeated Master Of Reality, a horse that has raced well in the Melbourne Cup previously.
"If the Anthony and Sam Freedman camp have been able to freshen him up, Delphi brings the right profile to run a big race."
Crispe also nominated the Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott-trained Sir Lucan as a very competitive Cup chance at his Australian debut.
Sir Lucan, formerly trained by Aidan O'Brien, has won two of his eight starts and did perform particularly well when he ran to a Timeform rating of 113 finishing fourth to Yibir in the Group 2 Great Voltigeur Stakes over 2385m.
"This race has proved useful for the Melbourne Cup previously through the efforts of Mahler and Cross Counter," Crispe said.
"As a winner over 2615m in Ireland where he defeated subsequent French Group 1 placed Wordsworth, Sir Lucan should find 3200m in Australia well within his grasp."
Crispe also expects Tralee Rose, Spanish Mission, Floating Artist, Grand Promenade and Persan to run well in the Melbourne Cup.
Online article taken from Racenet, published on Monday, 1st November 2021, Author, Ray Thomas.