Joseph O’Brien could be doubly represented in Saturday’s Caulfield Cup as he seeks to further enhance an impressive record in Australia’s biggest races.
The 30-year-old trainer already has two Melbourne Cup triumphs on his CV with Rekindling and Twilight Payment, plus a Cox Plate victory via State Of Rest.
O’Brien is now aiming to add a Caulfield Cup success to that list, with Okita Soushi and Valiant King entered for this weekend’s contest – should they scrape into the final field.
Both are proven performers in big races, with Okita Soushi winning the Duke Of Edinburgh Stakes at Royal Ascot back in June and Valiant King finishing second to Desert Hero in the King George V Stakes the day before.
Travelling foreman Sean Corby told racing.com: “They are very good. They’ve been training well and seem happy and everything’s gone good so far, so we’re hopeful now that they’ll both get in.
“They did a strong piece of work on Saturday and other than that it’s mostly been nice canters every day.
“They both ran at Ascot in big fields and both ran well, so that should be fine and hopefully they should handle the track and like a bit of good ground as well.
“I think Okita Soushi, by the sounds of it, will probably go on to run in the Melbourne Cup if he gets in and I think at the moment Valiant King might just run in the Caulfield Cup and that might be it for this year.
“They’ve both got light weights, so hopefully the two of them could run well and it’s hard to split them on what they’ve been doing here.”
Simon and Ed Crisford’s West Wind Blows is among the fancied runners for Saturday’s mile-and-a-half race at Caulfield, having recently finished second in the Turnbull Stakes at Flemington.