Champion jockey Hugh Bowman has been given a deadline to choose his Melbourne Cup ride.
Bowman was at Werribee on Tuesday morning to put French galloper Tiberian, who is undergoing quarantine, through his paces in a leisurely work-out.
Tiberian is the third international Melbourne Cup 2017 hopeful Bowman has ridden in the past six days.
He partnered Red Cardinal on Thursday, his Caulfield Cup mount Marmelo on Saturday ahead of Tiberian who galloped with another international galloper Garcia.
Already Ryan Moore, who won the 2014 Melbourne Cup on Protectionist, has taken the ride on the Andreas Wohler-trained Red Cardinal.
Australian Thoroughbred Bloodstock’s Darren Dance has given Bowman the opportunity to study Tiberian’s form but wants an answer from the jockey on Wednesday night.
Last year Heartbreak City, ridden by Joao Moreira, ran second in the Melbourne Cup for ATB.
“It’s a tough decision but we have to take a hard line and say we really want to lock our rider in before we get too far down the list,” Dance said.
“This time last year we already had Joao Moreira locked in.”
Dance says he wants their jockey to head to Werribee and partner Tiberian three or four times in the lead-up to the Cup, particularly when the work increases.
Bowman said Tiberian had given him a similar feeling to Red Cardinal and Marmelo.
“I haven’t really had a good look at his races yet because I didn’t want to have a preconceived idea of what I might feel,” Bowman said.
“The reality is that he’s a very similar horse to Red Cardinal and, of course, Marmelo, who I’ve already partnered.
“It’s hard to really pick one from the other on feel but I was impressed with the enthusiasm he showed to the line.”
Tiberian sits on the fourth line of Melbourne Cup odds at $21, a price he shares with Marmelo, while Red Cardinal is rated at $17 chance.
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