Original trainer Dunlop hails Green Moon after stunning Melbourne Cup victory
17:30 GMT, 6 November 2012
Harry Dunlop, the original trainer of Melbourne Cup winner Green Moon, has said the five-year-old always had bags of raw talent.
The five-year son of Montjeu, trained by Robert Hickmott and ridden by Brett Prebble, carried Australian group one form into the biggest race Down Under having won the Turnbull Stakes at Flemington last month.
But his formative years were with Dunlop in Lambourn when he landed the London Gold Cup at Newbury in May 2010 from Monterosso and the Listed Fairway Stakes at Newmarket before starting 4-1 when fifth of eight behind Monterosso in the Group Two King Edward VI I Stakes at Royal Ascot.
First up: Jockey Brett Prebble (right) rides Green Moon to victory in the Melbourne Cup
Delight: Jockey Brett Prebble
Dunlop, whose filly Roz is being trained for the 1,000 Guineas after finishing second to Certify in the Group One Fillies Mile at Newmarket, said: ‘Green Moon is one of the best horses I have ever trained.
‘He won his maiden very easily first time out as a three-year-old and won at Newbury from Monterosso, who went on to win the Dubai World Cup.
‘We did think for a minute that he could be Derby prospect, although we also thought he was probably a mile and a quarter horse – now he is winning over two miles.
‘He had the look of one that would improve and had world at his feet. It was probably a mistake running at Royal Ascot. He’d had three races by that stage of the season and it was just a fraction too much for him.
Royal approval: Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, presents the Melbourne Cup trophy to winning owner Nick Williams
Joy: Jockey Prebble, centre, celebrates with trainer Robert Hickmott, left, and owner Nick Williams
‘After that he had a few problems and
never quite recaptured that form. He was owned by owner-breeders who
really only race fillies – hence the reason he was sold on.’
Green Moon was owned by Lady Annabel Goldsmith and Mrs Ben Goldsmith when racing in Britain.
His Melbourne Cup exploits meant that
the strong European challenge was unsuccessful with Marco Botti’s
Jakkalberry faring best in third under Colum O’ Donoghue.
Spectacle: The Melbourne Cup
Celebrity status: Mischa Barton and Ashley Madekwe hold the Melbourne Cup trophy
But the finish was dominated by
ex-European horses now trained in Australia with former Sir Michael
Stoute star Fiorente finishing a length second on his first start for
Gai Waterhouse with Kelinni, who was once trained by Amanda Perrett,
Mount Athos, a first ride in
Australia for Ryan Moore, was not helped by being bumped twice and
finished best of all in fifth of the 24 starters, arguably looking the
best horse in the race.
Having previously had two seconds in the race, this looked another to unfortunately slip from the grasp of trainer Luca Cumani.
Royal party: Prince Charles, Prince of Wales and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall at Flemington Racecourse
But like most of the Europeans, Cumani’s hope was not favoured by the slow pace which prompted a final burn-up.
Ed Dunlop’s Red Cadeaux, runner-up 12
months earlier, never threatened in eighth, Cumani’s My Quest For Peace
was 10th and Godolphin’s Cavalryman 12th.
The two French hopes, 2010 winner
Americain and 2011 scorer Dunaden, were 11th and 14th respectively with
Dermot Weld’s Galileo’s Choice 20th.