This Weekend in Racing: Countdown to the Cup

Oct 29, 2021

By Terry Kennedy

It doesn’t get any better than having a horse that you OWN race on Melbourne Cup Day at Flemington and Vic Husslers owners are now living that dream with Team Captain to run in the Macca’s Run over 2800 metres. Trainer Matt Cumani is “delighted” with Team Captain who’s ready to “give a massive sight”. Congrats to the Husslers who had another winner on Monday thanks to Bellinger. The Queensland Rogues have The Big Goodbye entered for Saturday and Tuesday at Eagle Farm, read on further for trainer Rob Heathcote’s thoughts. Don’t forget Rosehill, where the Golden Eagle is worth a lazy $7.5million…can you believe it. Now let’s try and find some winners from our TRL trainers.



Don’t get me wrong, Derby Day is the pinnacle with 4 Group 1s, but it’s mind blowing to think the winner of the Golden Eagle at Rosehill gets a whopping $4.1 million. The Vic Husslers training combination of Mick Price and Michael Kent junior have sent I’m Thunderstruck on a lightning raid to Sydney to steal the Eagle. There’s a stack of speed drawn inside him, I’m Thunderstruck should be able to slot in midfield and be too strong. To the VRC Derby at Flemington and the “Two Micks” have Gunstock coming off a last start win with blinkers on and primed to run the 2500 metres right out. I concede he’ll need some luck from barrier 19 – it’s a very short run to the first turn. I think the stable’s best of the day is Daisies (Race 3) with the booking of James McDonald a significant lead. Extreme Warrior (Race 7) has won his last two and could be a potential star, if not already.

BET: I’m Thunderstruck  – Each Way (Sydney Race 7)

BET: Daisies – Each Way (Melb Race 3)

BET: Gunstock – Each Way (Melb Race 6)

BET: Extreme Warrior – WIN (Melb Race 7)



Huge carnival coming up for Peter Moody as trainer of the red hot favourite Incentivise in Tuesday’s Melbourne Cup. I reckon he’ll get a winner on Saturday to settle the nerves in the shape of Oxley Road (Race 4). He’s a last start winner, rock hard fit and has already been well backed in early markets on Sportsbet at $3.20.

 BET: Oxley Road – Win  (Melb Race 4)


Trainer Matt Cumani has no doubt Team Captain will do the Vic Husslers proud on the first Tuesday in November when he races in the Macca’s Plate (Race 9) over 2800 metres. Cumani confirmed “Team Captain has done extremely well since his last start win in the Hamilton Cup. I had thought about running him in the Lexus (on Derby Day) but thought the extra distance of the Macca’s would suit. He’ll stay all day this horse and give Vic Husslers owners a massive thrill”. Cumani said.

BET: Team Captain – Each Way (Melb Race 9 Tuesday)


 The pride of the Qld Rogues stable The Big Goodbye has accepted for Eagle Farm this Saturday with trainer Rob Heathcote still to make a decision on whether he starts or waits for Tuesday. The Big Goodbye (Race 5) Saturday has already been smashed in early Sportsbet markets in what appears a wide-open but winnable race. Ziemba (Race 9) broke through for a last stride win last start and he’s now capable of going back to back in a suitable race.

Bet: The Big Goodbye  – Each Way (Brisbane Race 5)

Bet: Ziemba – Each Way (Brisbane Race 9)


Could be a day for thrillseekers if you, as we are, fans of Qld Rogues trainer Tony Gollan. He has a stack of short priced favourites on Saturday at Eagle Farm starting with Big Muskie (Race 1) who’s already odds-on with Sportsbet but should be winning. Youngblood (Race 2) is already at the skinny odds of $2.35 (Sportsbet) is drawn to get the run of the race and has plenty of fight. Black Magnum (Race 7) was formerly with Mark Newnham in Sydney, is a very good fresh horse and ready to win first-up for Tony. Pull Anchor (Race 10) – Gollan has two runners including the favourite in the last but I like the outsider of the two Pull Anchor (Sportsbet $4.40) to be the favourite Salateen.

BET: Big Muskie – Win (Bris Race 1)

BET: Youngblood – Win (Bris Race 2)

BET: Black Magnum- Win (Bris Race 7)

BET: Pull Anchor – Each Way (Bris Race 10)



The Joe Pride stable is on fire and has another stack of good chances on Saturday. At Flemington, Ballistic Lover has been stunning form this preparation with 3 wins from 5 starts. She’s a tough mare who can sit up on the pace and fight off challenges. At Rosehill, Joe is backing up Eduardo (Race 6), who he reports has pulled up well after his gallant third in the Everest and is ready to give them something to chase again. Be patient because Zoushack (Race 10) looks attractive odds at Sportsbet $5. He’s a last start winner who goes to the front and is hard to get past.

BET: Ballistic Lover – Each Way (Melb Race 9)

BET: Eduardo – Each Way (Syd Race 6)

BET: Zoushack – Each Way (Syd Race 10)