Bart has his sights set on another Cup

It might not be the Melbourne Cup but Saturday’s Stayer’s Cup is still a 3200-metre event and, as you would expect, legendary trainer Bart Cummings has a strong chance.

Last-start Winter Cup (2400m) runner-up Yaqubi heads into the $100,000 Stayer’s Cup at Rosehill, the first time the race has been run over 3200m since 1988, with stable representative James Cummings upbeat that the journey will bring out the best in the four-year-old son of Galileo.

Cummings said the stable started to recognise Yaqubi’s potential when he recorded back-to-back wins over shorter distances last preparation.

“I think when he put together a few wins last preparation they thought then that he might have had the ability to step up into the better grade,” Cummings said.

“We’ve taken him along slowly this time in and he’s taken a while to hit his straps but once we’ve got him up to a trip he’s just gone from strength to strength.

“There’s no reason why, coming to the ultimate distance and his last run this preparation, he can’t just show his best and win.”

Yaqubi whacked away in the Winter Cup at Rosehill last time out on June 5 in the heavy conditions but was unable to run down the Guy Walter-trained Twin Wing who led all the way to win by a length.

Cummings said the Winter Cup performance was typical of the gelding who he expects to relish the rise in distance at his first try at 3200m.

“He’s one-paced and quite dour but he’s got something,” Cummings said.

“He’s got a little bit of class even though he lacks the best turn of foot. He should be suited by the trip and all those things should fall into place for him to run out a strong two miles on Saturday.”

The Chris Waller-trained Bellagio Wynn is topweight for the Stayer’s Cup with 58kg ahead of Twin Wing on 57kg and the Robert Smerdon-trained Black And Bent and Waller’s Strike One on 56.5kg.

Group One winner Triple Honour would have been topweight for the race but Waller withdrew his nomination before weights were released.

Yaqubi is on the limit with 53kg.