Bart Cummings’ Viewed will have his first run at Flemington since his 2008 Melbourne Cup win last year and stable foreman Reg Fleming says the six-year-old is capable of an upset in Saturday’s Group One Turnbull Stakes 2009.
Fleming, who has headed up the Melbourne stable for Cummings for the last 15 years, said Viewed was a racehorse who could not be discounted in anything.
“He is as tough a horse as I have had anything to do with since I’ve been with Bart,” Fleming said.
He said Viewed was going as well as, if not better than, last year when he won the Cup and that he had progressed since his a first-up fourth to Mic Mac in the Memsie Stakes (1400m) and 10th to Heart Of Dreams in the 2009 Underwood Stakes (1800m) at Caulfield.
“I was happy with his run last start after I saw he ran the second fastest last furlong (200m),” Fleming said.
“It showed he was on track and he will improve as he had a good blow too.”
Fleming said Viewed was better prepared for this spring compared to last year when he barely had any time off after winning the Brisbane Cup in June.
“This year he only had four runs in a light autumn and came into the spring after a good long spell,” Fleming said.
“He looks super.”
Viewed is among 16 horses in the Turnbull which includes stablemates Roman Emperor and Joe Blow, and while he has drawn barrier 13 Fleming is confident it won’t be a concern as Brad Rawiller will be instructed to ride him off the pace.
On Wednesday TAB Sportsbet opened Viewed at $31 while Roman Emperor was $9 and Joe Blow $81.
AJC Australian Derby winner Roman Emperor will have a lugging bit removed from his gear as well as a tongue tie and will race in a Norton bit for the first time.
Fleming said Roman Emperor arrived in Melbourne not long after his last-start third to Miss Marielle in the Group Two Hill Stakes (1900m) at Rosehill.
“I have only had him a couple of weeks but I am happy with him,” Fleming said.
He said that while he was a Derby winner he could stamp himself a Cox Plate 2009 contender in the Turnbull.
“I reckon at a mile and a quarter (2000m) he will be really effective,” Fleming said.
“He has a high cruising speed, races on the pace and keeps battling away.
“I don’t know about him getting two miles (3200m) but you don’t know until you try them.”
Joe Blow was less than convincing that he would measure up to the Cups when he finished eighth in restricted grade at Sandown last start, but Fleming isn’t dismissing him just yet.
“Until I see him run a couple more times I don’t have an opinion,” Fleming said.
“He’s done well since he got to Melbourne but you couldn’t get a guide on him last start as it was a wet track and his best form in on a dry track.
“They ran him off his feet and got him off the bit chasing as he didn’t handle the going.”
Article By Robert Windmill Aapracing