Cummings cautious with Caulfield Guineas, Thousand Guineas entries

Not having a standout contender for either of the 1600-metre Group 1 Guineas races at Caulfield is not something James Cummings has had to get accustomed to as head trainer at Godolphin.

He produced Anamoe to win last year’s Caulfield Guineas as a short-priced favourite, having done likewise with Flit in the Thousand Guineas two years earlier.

Cummings on Tuesday nominated 10 colts or geldings for the $3 million Caulfield Guineas and eight fillies for the $1 million Thousand Guineas but concedes they will need to step up.

A large part of what has him excites him about the early spring, though, is giving them the chance to do so.

“In other years I’ve had a little bit more confident in that area,” Cummings said when asked to assess his Guineas prospects.

“We’ve just got to be realistic and work hard to pick off the low-hanging fruit with those horses coming through and see if that might lead us somewhere.”

That’s not to suggest Cummings does not think there are three-year-olds within his Godolphin team capable of being a spring force.

Golden Slipper fifth placegetter Ojai will appreciate the opportunity to race on firmer tracks, while he cannot yet put a ceiling to the level of ability possessed by In Secret.

The daughter of champion stallion I Am Invincible and former speedy filly Eloping has won her only two starts; an 1100m Hawkesbury maiden and the Listed Woodlands Stakes at Scone over the same trip.

“She was really good winning the two-year-old fillies race at Scone and she’s got a wonderful pedigree,” Cummings said.

“I’ve nominated her for the Thousand Guineas, but there’s going to a bit of a query about how well she’s going to run a mile. We’ll give her that chance in a Classic if the opportunity presents itself.”

Portray, Sumatra, Jewellery, Black Iris, Magic Carpet and Troach are the others Cummings has entered for the Thousand Guineas, while Aft Cabin, Atmosphere, Chopin, Contemporary, Golden Mile, Rakomelo, Sandpaper, Silvanito, Spacewalk and Yoshino are his Caulfield Guineas nominations.

While Cummings might not be as confident heading into the Guineas races this year, confidence remains as high as ever with last year’s Caulfield Guineas champion.

Anamoe’s campaign has been geared around being primed to go one better than last year in the $5 million Cox Plate (2040m) and Cummings is excited about seeing him resume over 1400m for the first time in Saturday week’s Group 1 Winx Stakes.

“He’s traditionally run over shorter distances first-up; five furlongs (1000m) and 1100 metres as a two-year-old and then six furlongs (1200m) as a three-year-old,” Cummings said.

“Now he can nestle into his preferred distances and I think seven furlongs (1400m) first-up will suit him quite nicely.”

Horse Racing Offers and Promotions

Stay up to date with the latest racing news
Follow our social accounts to get exclusive content and all the latest racing news!