Wilde conundrum if Rose wins Foundation Cup

Trainer Symon Wilde is focussing on the Melbourne Cup with his promising staying mare Tralee Rose (NZ). However, the Caulfield Cup may come on the radar if she is successful in the Group 3 MRC Foundation Cup (2000m) at Caulfield on Saturday. 

Tralee Rose runs in the Foundation Cup at Caulfield, picture Racing Photos

The winner of Saturday’s race earns a ballot exemption into the Caulfield Cup and at this stage Tralee Rose is 43rd in the Order of Entry. 

Tralee Rose finished third first-up in the Heatherlie Stakes (1700m) at Caulfield on August 28 and Saturday’s assignment is a lead-up to The Bart Cummings (2500m) at Flemington on October 2. Victory in The Bart Cummings gives the winner a ballot exemption into the Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington on November 2 for which Tralee Rose currently sits in 40th position. 

But Wilde said victory in the MRC Foundation Cup would give connections something to ponder. 

“I don’t want to get ahead of ourselves, but if she did happen to win we’d have to give it careful consideration,” Wilde said. 

“To me, it’s all about getting her in the Melbourne Cup. We would have to weigh everything up to see if she would get a penalty from that [the MRC Foundation Cup] race for the Melbourne Cup. We’d certainly have some thinking to do, but it would be a nice problem.” 

After her pleasing first-up third, Wilde said the step up to 2000m on Saturday was ideal for Tralee Rose. He added that her first-up performance may have been flattered by a moderate tempo and a race that had little change. 

“I think she can make use of the good barrier,” Wilde said. “I’m hoping that is the case because then that offsets tempo to an extent and then if they do run it along, she can drift back a bit. 

“I believe she is an out-and-out stayer. A mile-and-a-half plus is right in her wheelhouse as she’s got a beautiful long stride and she’s clean-winded.