First Lady Heads Across The Ditch

Source: Herald Sun/Darren Tindale
Gai Waterhouse has Travolta in the Auckland Cup. Source: Herald Sun/Darren Tindale

Australia’s ‘First Lady’ of horse training, Gai Waterhouse, has headed ‘across the ditch’ in search of Group 1 glory with consistent gelding Travolta , one of the favourites in the Auckland Cup over 3200m at Ellerslie on Wednesday afternoon. To be ridden by Nash Rawiller, the topweight must carry 59kg over the Melbourne Cup distance and has drawn a wide gate. On the plus side, the son of Handsome Ransom has been in the money at its last six starts, with two wins, three seconds and a third.

Another Aussie taking on the Kiwis is the lightly-weighted and raced Celtic Prince . The improving four-year-old has posted four wins from eight starts this campaign. The son of O’Reilly will be ridden by Brenton Avdulla and looks suited over the marathon journey. His trainer is young Kiwi, Bjorn Baker. He's based at Warwick Farm in Sydney now and would love to upset some of his old mates back home.

The Auckland Cup boasts $500,000 in prizemoney, with 300k going to the winner. The firm favourite for the event is Who Shot Thebarman , trained at Awapuni by Mark Oulaghan. With Matthew Cameron in the saddle, the five-year-old son of Yaramin Vital is having just his ninth lifetime start. The talented gelding already boasts five wins up to 2500m.

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