Legendary Australian trainer Bart Cummings is preparing a number of his stable stars for another ambitious assault on the 2010 Spring Racing Carnival in Victoria this year.
Cummings, trainer of a record 12 Melbourne Cup winners, is beginning to build up his Flemington-based stables with a number of quality runners ready to take on the prestigious Group 1 races at the Melbourne Cup Carnival.
A recent stint of bad health hasn’t slowed Cummings down with his plans, the esteemed mentor gradually building up a base of Group 1 winners that are sure to start as the favourites at Sportsbet in their respective spring races.
Classy Shamardal filly Faint Perfume is already the pre-nomination favourite for the 150th Melbourne Cup, taking place on November 2, with bookies across the country. Faint Perfume was a star in the autumn winning the Group 1 Storm Queen Stakes (2000m) at Rosehill and running a gallant second in the Group 1 AJC Australian Oaks (2400m) at Randwick in April.
The punters are getting behind the rising stayer for the 2010 Melbourne Cup, worth a record $6 million in prizemoney this year, before the August nominations have even taken place.
Other top horses in work for Cummings include last year’s Cox Plate winner So You Think and Queensland Derby winner Dariana.
Three-year-old High Chaparral colt So You Think had a brilliant campaign last year that included a surprise victory in the Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m) at Moonee Valley, which he backed up with a solid second place in the Group 1 Emirates Stakes (1600m). The big wins bought his career earnings to over $2.25 million accumulated in just three wins from six career starts.
So You Think missed out on adding to his impressive record during the autumn as he was out with injury, but is looking in fine form now having put on weight and worked hard. Cummings is looking to start So You Think at the end of August.
There are also sure to be plenty of bets placed on Dariana at Sportsbet this spring, the top Redoute’s Choice filly having showed incredible promise last month winning the Group 1 Queensland Derby (2400m) at Eagle Farm.
The Melbourne Cup is likely to be Dariana’s main spring target and she is currently one of the top 10 favourites for the prestigious staying test.