FANDANGO TO CLAIM GOLDEN CUP TICKET

The Sportsman Weekend - - News - ADAM SHERRY

A GOLDEN ticket into next year’s Mel­bourne Cup is up for grabs in to­mor­row’s Group 3 Queen El­iz­a­beth Stakes (2600m) at Flem­ing­ton and Bal­larat trainer Archie Alexan­der has a strong chance in the form of Lord Fandango.

The six-year-old has been out of win­ners cir­cle since tak­ing out the Group 2 Her­bert Power Stakes at Caulfield last spring, he is knock­ing on the door with some strong per­for­mance of late.

“He was very un­lucky not to have won the Bendigo Cup last start,” Alexan­der said.

“He got too far back but ran a re­ally good race. He’s come through it well.

The son of Lord Of Eng­land came from near last in the field of 13 to fin­ish fourth, right on the heels of the placeget­ters, less than a length off win­ner Red Alto who he meets again to­mor­row.

“This race is prob­a­bly just a touch tougher than the Bendigo Cup,” he said.

“Red Alto and Sir Isaac New­ton are in there again.

“He’ll re­ally en­joy the ex­tra dis­tance and ob­vi­ously a top jockey in Ker­rin McEvoy to fill in.

“Jor­dan Childs had bit of mishap on Tues­day and we were a bit un­sure what was hap­pen­ing in re­gards to him be­ing able to ride but we were lucky enough get the Mel­bourne Cup win­ning jockey in Ker­rin to come off the bench.

“There’s a lot of dan­gers in race but there’s not one horse that I’d think “We can never beat that.”

“They’ve all got strengths and weak­nesses and I think we’re def­i­nitely in it with a good chance.”

Alexan­der is look­ing for­ward to get­ting Lord Fandango back to Flem­ing­ton to­mor­row over the 2600m.

“He was beaten two and a quar­ter lengths in the Aus­tralian Cup ear­lier this year at his only start at Flem­ing­ton,” he said.

“All he needs is a bit of luck with things to go his way and I think he’ll be right there at the fin­ish.”

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