By Frances O’Shea
Chris Waller has signalled he is keen to claim his sixth Carlton Mid Wyong Gold Cup and believes impressive stayer Sayed could be the horse to do it. The five-year-old gelding looked the goods with his dominant 5.3 length win in a Benchmark 85 over the 2400m at Royal Randwick last Saturday.
The victory brought up back-to-back wins for the lightly-raced import by American sire Stormy Atlantic. It was the fifth win for Sayed from just 11 starts, including a recent victory over the 2100m Wyong Gold Cup distance at Sandown on June 7.
Waller declared his intentions to target Wyong’s $160,000 Listed feature (run on Friday 1 September) following his latest runaway win. With the Group 1 The Metropolitan a possible end goal, the trainer intends to start Sayed in both the Wyong and Newcastle Cup races.
“He’s a mature horse now so this is the time to get in with those up-and-coming horses with a light weight and into the Newcastle and Wyong Cups,” Waller said. “He could come back here next year with topweight in a Wyong or Newcastle Cup. I love a horse like him with confidence. It's a big thing."
Sayed will be one of several horses the stable will nominate for the Wyong Cup. Waller won the 2015 Wyong Gold Cup with Beyond Thankful, giving Hugh Bowman his first victory in the race since 2000.
His winning run began in 2010 with Hawk Island, followed by The Verminator in 2011, Wazn in 2013 and Multilateral the following year. The stable was denied another win last year, with Sacred Master finishing second, a half-length behind the Kris Lees-trained Slow Pace.
Get On The Grange, trained at Wyong by Allan Kehoe, finished second to Sayed on Saturday and will also head to his home track Cup. Kehoe said the horse had a hard run at Randwick and should have finished closer to Sayed.
“He finished second in the Grafton Cup and would have won if he’d had a bit of luck,” Kehoe said. “The Wyong Cup looks like a good race for him and that will be his next start. He finished third in the race last year; not bad for a bush horse. He pulled up good after Randwick and is a happy horse.”
Nominations for the Wyong Gold Cup close at 11am on Monday 28 August.