Tasmanian trainer Scott Brunton fears he has missed his chance at winning a Caulfield Cup with Banca Mo.
While a Caulfield Cup start is guaranteed for the winner of the Mornington Cup (2400m), Brunton is not certain he would run Banca Mo if the gelding was successful on Saturday.
Brunton instead wishes he could wind back the clock two years for his Caulfield Cup dream with the rising eight-year-old.
Banca Mo won the 2013 Warrnambool Cup and Brunton was eyeing that year’s Caulfield Cup with the $2000 yearling purchase who has won $550,000 in stakes.
“I was staying with Robert Smerdon at the time and he said ‘tip him out for the spring because you might have found one’,” Brunton said.
“We gave him a spell and he put on 25 to 30 kilos along with good muscle, but in getting him ready we found a bone chip floating in a hock.
“I tell people I’ve been belted by some big blokes in my time, but that dropped me.”
Brunton was this year focused on winning Tasmania’s two big cups races – the Hobart Cup and the Launceston Cup.
The Mornington Cup didn’t figure in his plans until a barrier mishap put Banca Mo behind schedule for the two Tasmanian features.
Although filling placings in both races he has blossomed since and Brunton said any give in the ground would be ideal for Saturday.
“I haven’t had him this right to run on a soft track since he won the Warrnambool Cup two years ago,” Brunton said.
Dean Holland, who won the Adelaide Cup on Tanby earlier in the month, has ridden successfully for Brunton in Tasmania this year and takes the ride on Banca Mo who is a $17 chance behind the $4.50 favourite Akzar.
Genuine Lad, who defeated Banca Mo in the Launceston Cup, has been scratched from the Mornington Cup after an attack of boils.