The John Thompson-trained Galizani will be out to emulate Maluckyday by winning Saturday’s Lexus Stakes at Flemington.
Like last year’s Melbourne Cup runner-up Maluckyday, Galizani won the Listed Tattersall’s Club Cup (2400m) at Randwick before coming to Melbourne for the Group Three Lexus (2500m) which Maluckyday had to win to gain a Cup start and did so impressively.
Galizani is in a similar position this year as she is 39th in the order of entry into the Cup and must win the Lexus to gain exemption from the Melbourne Cup ballot.
The Galileo mare won the Epona Stakes (1900m) at Rosehill and was runner-up to Hawk Island in the JRA Plate (2000m) at Randwick, both at Listed level, last autumn.
She was spelled after running fifth to My Kingdom Of Fife in the Group One Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) at Randwick but had done little in four runs this campaign before her last-start win.
Thompson changed the five-year-old’s work around keeping her fresh which made all the difference last start.
Owned by Nathan Tinkler’s Patinack Farm, Galizani has pleased Thompson since arriving in Melbourne and the forecast rain will only help her prospects.
Thompson said she had a nice hitout on Tuesday morning on the course proper at Flemington.
“We wanted her to have a look around the track,” he said.
“She’s fit and well and she’s a mare in form now so we’re hoping she holds it.”
Apprentice Tim Bell, who rode Galizani to win last start in Sydney, retains the mount on the mare who drew the outside gate (16).
The Anthony Cummings-trained Home On A Wing is the only horse engaged in the Lexus who is not vying for a Melbourne Cup spot.
The Peter Moody-trained Macedonian attracted a $5000 bet at $13 and has firmed to $11 with TAB Sportsbet.
The Lloyd Williams-owned Caulfield Cup runner-up Green Moon has eased marginally from $3.30 to $3.40 but retains favouritism ahead of the Team Hawkes-trained Niwot who is a stablemate of Maluckyday.
Caulfield Cup placegetter and Moonee Valley Cup runner-up Tullamore is at $7 with Midnight Martini at $8.50 and English stayer Moyenne Corniche at $9.
Galizani is at $19.