STAMPEDE TO CONFIRM CUP CREDENTIALS
FIVE-year-old Stampede will be among a host of horses putting Caulfield Cup aspirations on show in tomorrow’s Group 3 Naturalism Stakes.
The carries a ballot exemption for the winner into next month’s $3 million Caulfield Cup (2400m) with most horses for the 2000m-race holding Cup entries.
The Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott-trained Stampede won the Listed Wag ga Wag ga Gold Cup in NSW Group 3 Chairman’s Handicap in Queensland over 2000m last campaign before being put away for the spring.
He resumed with a convincing win in a 1600m-handicap at Moonee Valley on September 9.
“We pencilled in the Caulfield Cup as a race we’d love to target with him,” Bott said. “Af ter winning in Queensland we decided to pull the pin early on his Queensland campaign just to really focus on giving him his chance at the better quality staying features over carnival.
“That gave us enough time to put him out, give him a quick turnaround and bring back and tr y to prepare for a race like the Caulfield Cup.
“His first-up ran gave us a lot of confidence and obviously Saturday is the next natural progression.”
Beau Mer tens rode Stampede to victor y at Moonee Valley and again has the ride.
“It will be tougher competition on Saturday, so we’ll need to see him take that next step,” Bott said.