Anthony Cummings admits Yankee Rose is a major stumbling block in his bid for a first VRC Oaks win, but stranger things have happened.
And the trainer has more than one reason for hoping either Moqueen or Lamma Hilton can get the job done against the odds-on favourite in Thursday’s 2500m-Classic at Flemington.
First he has to maintain his place in the Cummings dynasty after his son James became the fourth generation to train a Derby winner when Prized Icon took out the blue riband on Saturday.
“James is putting the pressure on,” Cummings said.
Cummings won the 2012 Victoria Derby with $41 chance Fiveandahalfstar and if Lamma Hilton could cause an $81 upset, the trainer would create another piece of history.
“If Lamma Hilton could do it, it would mean I’ve bred and owned a Derby winner and an Oaks winner,” he said.
“That would give me a warm fuzzy feeling.”
Cummings’ father Bart trained a record nine Oaks winners and five Victoria Derby winners.
Anthony Cummings admits Moqueen, who is at $17, probably has a better chance against Yankee Rose as the more seasoned of the two stablemates.
Moqueen beat the males in the Listed Dulcify Quality (1600m) at Randwick on October 1, the same day Yankee Rose became the first filly to win the Group One Spring Champion Stakes (2000m).
Since then, Yankee Rose has raced at the highest level for a third behind Winx and Hartnell in the Cox Plate on October 22 while Moqueen was fourth in the Group Three Ethereal Stakes at Caulfield a week earlier.
“Moqueen is obivously the pick of the two because she has performed at the higher level,” Cummings said.
“But both fillies have pedigrees that should be effective over the longer distances.
“Lamma Hilton promised a bit early but didn’t really deliver.
“But it’s enough to give me hope.”
Blake Shinn, who rode Moqueen in the Ethereal, switches back to Yankee Rose after Dean Yendall rode her in the Spring Champion and Cox Plate.
Jason Collett, who won the Dulcify on Moqueen, will be back aboard while Glyn Schofield, who won the Derby on Prized Icon, rides Lamma Hilton.