Green Moon wins the Newcastle Gold Cup
Nick Williams pleaded for Green Moon to be given a hefty penalty in the Caulfield and Melbourne Cups after the imported stayer turned in an outstanding staying effort to win the Newcastle Gold Cup on Thursday. “Any handicapper who saw that run would have to give him a decent penalty,” Williams, the son of owner Lloyd Williams, said.
“He has 50 kilograms in both races but he won’t after tomorrow.”
Williams is hoping for weight penalties to ensure the horse can get a start in both features.
Green Moon came from the outside barrier, raced right on the pace and fought off numerous challenges in the straight to win.
Jockey Brenton Avdulla, who only landed the ride 24 hours before the race when Nick Hall became ill, had to adopt unfamiliar tactics.
“Nick told me these European horses like plenty of room where they can breath and get balanced,” Avdulla said.
“Usually I would have been looking for cover but he was happy outside the leader so I stayed there.
“He settled beautifully and I just kept throwing the reins at him and he kept responding.
“Every time a horse came up to him he kept giving and wouldn’t let anything get past him.”
Williams praised Avdulla’s ride.
“That is the first time he has ridden for us and he did a great job,” Williams said.
“When Nick got sick we went looking for the best jockey available and Brenton was it.”
The Robert Hickmott-trained Green Moon will return to Melbourne on Friday morning but may return for the Group One Metropolitan at Randwick next month.
Green Moon ($4.50) fought off challenges all the way down the long Broadmeadow straight to win by a head from Home On A Wing ($9) with Gazza Guru ($16) a further half-head back third.
The Williams team landed Green Moon in Australia in November.
“He had great three-year-old form in England but then lost form and was put on the market,” Williams said.
“We thought the Australian way of racing would suit him and he has proved us right. We like this horse a lot.”