Another year under Joseph O’Brien’s care has left Irish stayer Twilight Payment in better shape for his second crack at a Melbourne Cup next month.
Twilight Payment finished less than four lengths from Vow And Declare in last year’s Melbourne Cup after jumping from a wide barrier at only his second start for O’Brien.
Jim Bolger trained Twilight Payment before the sale of a controlling interest in the gelding to Lloyd Williams and an ownership group that also includes Mushroom Records founder Michael Gudinski.
Twilight Payment returned to Ireland when he posted two impressive wins during the northern hemisphere summer. The son of Teofilo won the Group 2 Curragh Cup by eight lengths in July.
The eight-year-old is one of four runners sent to Melbourne by the 2017 Melbourne Cup-winning trainer. Travelling foreman Mark Power said another year with O’Brien had improved Twilight Payment.
“We hadn’t had him all that long when we had him out here last year,” Power said.
“We’ve had the benefit of having him for the full year this year.
Trainer Joseph O’Brien (left) and prominent owner Lloyd Williams (right) have again teamed up for another crack at the Melbourne Cup. Photo: AAP Image/Luis Ascui.Source:AAP
“He’s progressed with each run and I think he’s gone really well this year.
“He finished off with a really good run in the (Irish St) Leger the last time out.
“He’ll be very competitive down here.”
Group 3 winner Buckhurst is likely to be the first member of O’Brien’s team to appear in Melbourne in Saturday week’s Caulfield Cup.
Buckhurst is safely in the Caulfield Cup field with 55kg. He defeated the Cox Plate-bound Sir Dragonet in a small field two runs back but hasn’t threatened with big weights at his two subsequent runs.
However, Power said Buckhurst’s last-start fifth to Tiger Moth with 63.5kg on September 20 was better than it looked on paper.
“It wasn’t a bad run giving away weight the last time,” Power said.
“He could be a good horse for us down here.”
TAB has Buckhurst at $17 in Caulfield Cup betting while Twilight Payment is a $34 chance to win the Melbourne Cup.
Originally published asTwilight back for another crack at Cup
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