With Australian quarantine officials currently inspecting facilities in Japan, it now looks likely that the presence of international horses in the 2010 Melbourne Cup final field will be large one for the historic 150th edition this spring.
Awaiting the approval of the Miho, Tokyo and Nakayama quarantine amenities are two top Japanese gallopers, Jaguar Mail and Meiner Kitz.
Both horses are classy stayers that will be a welcome addition to the world renowned Melbourne Cup, especially Jaguar Mail who has an impressive international race record having finished in the top four at the last two runnings of the Group 1 Honk Kong Vase (2400m) at Sha Tin.
Premier Australian jockey Craig Williams will take the Melbourne Cup mount on Jaguar Mail if the recent Group 1 Tenno Sho (3200m) winner makes it to Australia.
If the Japanese contingent are allowed entry it will be the first time since 2006, when Japanese duo Delta Blues and Pop Rock ran the quinella, that the Melbourne Cup has had a runner from Japan.
The 2006 Melbourne Cup winning duo were owned by Katsumi Yoshida, who also races Jaguar Mail.
Meanwhile, Kiwi stayer Sterling Prince is also targeting the 2010 Melbourne Cup this November. The Wayne Hillis-trained gelding kick starts his Cup campaign with a run at Ruakaka, New Zealand on Saturday.
Sterling Prince produced some solid form at last year’s Melbourne Cup Carnival, his Australian runs culminating with an easy win in the Group 3 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2600m) on Emirates Stakes Day.
Moroney is also preparing 2009 Victoria Derby winner Monaco Consul and classy stablemate Divine Rebel for a Caulfield and Melbourne Cups campaign – click here for more details.