Two Australian teams can start working on their Melbourne Cup hopefuls after unranked races in the English and Irish St Legers on Sunday.
Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott will return to Hoo Ya Mal training after the stayer beat just one runner at home in England’s St Leger in Doncaster while Lindsay Park rookie Camorra held firm in the Irish St Leger at Curragh.
Hoo Ya Mal finished nine lengths behind Eldar Eldarov in the Classic despite racing with the strong winner with 600m to go.
However, despite losing, Hoo Ya Mal remains at $18 in TAB’s Melbourne Cup market.
Eldar Eldarov went from $34 to $18 with his England win at St Leger, which was the Roger Varian-trained galloper’s fourth in five starts.
Eldar Eldarov was among the first Melbourne Cup acceptors last week, but Varian made no mention of a trip to Australia in his post-race interview.
“I think we see him as a Cup horse next season, he has stamina and an admirable attitude,” Varian said.
“If he stays solid, we could have him for the next two, three or four years. I think he’s very exciting.
Lindsay Park spring rookie Camorra struggled on wet ground in Ireland’s St Leger.
Camorra finished more than 20 lengths behind Aidan O’Brien-trained Kyprios after racing well into the home corner.
However, new co-manager Ben Hayes said the team was happy to forget about the race when assessing the Camorra’s chances at the Melbourne Cup.
“JD (Hayes) was there and said the ground was giving way but it rained that day so it was probably almost heavy,” he said.
“He traveled well, which is important, but he didn’t give up so the jockey took care of him.”
Camorra has passed vet checks ahead of Racing Victoria’s trip and will travel to Melbourne on the second international flight, which will arrive in mid-October.
TAB raised their Melbourne Cup prize money from $13 to $15 after the Irish St Leger.
Originally published as Melbourne Cup hopes Camorra and Hoo Ya Mal wrestle in English and Irish St Legers