A horse which hasn’t won for more than two years still has enough substance to his form to be rated among trainer Chris Waller’s best chance in the $750,000 Metropolitan.
Beaten Up has firmed to the third line of betting for the Group One staying race and Waller can understand the move despite the eight-year-old being absent from the winner’s enclosure since his 2013 Doomben Cup win.
In Waller’s mind, Beaten Up has annexed a record in weight-for-races to make him attractively handicapped despite having to give weight to his rivals.
“He’s the best-weighted horse in the race,” Waller said.
“He’s a tough weight-for-age horse who has run third in a BMW. If the BMW was two weeks ago he’d be a short-priced favourite to win on Saturday.”
Off the scene for almost 18 months after the 2013 Sydney spring carnival because of injury, Beaten Up turned in a worthy Metropolitan trial when just behind the placings in the Hill Stakes, the weight-for-age lead-up won by his stablemate Preferment.
“He got beaten a length last start when he was too close and he’s drawn perfectly this time,” Waller said.
“He should get the run of the race and hopefully settle.”
Waller will also run Wyong Gold Cup and Newcastle Gold Cup winner Beyond Thankful as well as Junoob and Opinion but the trainer says Hawkspur will be scratched.
“Hawkspur will run in the Bart Cummings at Flemington on Sunday,” Waller said.
Junoob and Opinion bring an interesting piece of Metropolitan history and controversy into this year’s race.
It was Junoob which beat Opinion in 2014 but the result was different a few months later when the former was stripped of the race because of a positive swab.
“They are going just as well as last year and they just need a good track,” Waller said.
Godolphin stayer Magic Hurricane is the Metropolitan favourite while Beaten Up’s quote has more than halved to $8.
Waller confirmed his weight-for-age warrior Foreteller will bow out of racing after he runs in the Craven Plate on Saturday.