History is likely to dictate the spring campaign of Gold Trip, with the Caulfield Cup the most likely goal for the defending Melbourne Cup champion.
No successful topweight in the Melbourne Cup has ever returned to win the race again, but there is a modern link to the Caulfield Cup and that is the way Gold Trip’s spring program is likely to unfold.
“The logical race for him this spring would be the Caulfield Cup,” Australian Bloodstock’s Jamie Lovett said on Tuesday.
“Cup winners have been able to come back the next year and win a Caulfield Cup and that looks to be a more achievable goal (than the Melbourne Cup).
“We’re just rapt with how he’s coming along at the moment. He’s quite forward, really happy and sound, so we’re looking ahead to the spring with some confidence despite an ordinary campaign in the autumn.”
While no Melbourne Cup winner has been able to back up and win again the following year since Makybe Diva did it twice from 2003-2005, the Caulfield Cup has proven less of a task, with two Melbourne Cup winners returning the following spring to take the race.
In 2008, Viewed won the Melbourne Cup with 53kg and nearly 12 months later carried 57kg to victory at Caulfield.
Import Dunaden followed his 2011 Melbourne Cup triumph with 54.5kg to win the following year’s Caulfield Cup with topweight of 58kg.
Gold Trip, who won the Melbourne Cup with 57.5kg, had four runs in the autumn, finishing with a disappointing effort for 15th in the Sydney Cup.
Lovett said Gold Trip is likely to return to racing in either the Heatherlie Handicap (1700m) at Caulfield on September 3 or wait two weeks for the G1 Makybe Diva Stakes (160m) at weight-for-age at Flemington.