Trainer Terry O’Sullivan says six-year-old Magnapal was nominated for the Caulfield Cup as a pipedream.
After two straight wins this campaign, including a Listed victory last start, Magnapal will line up in Saturday’s Group Three MRC Foundation Cup with a chance at earning a place in this year’s Caulfield Cup if he can upstage a quality field.
The winner of Saturday’s Caulfield race earns a ballot exemption into the Caulfield Cup.
“If he wins on Saturday we’ll probably go forward and give (the Caulfield Cup) a try,” O’Sullivan said.
After Magnapal won the Listed Heatherlie Handicap (1700m) at Caulfield last start following a midweek win at Sandown first-up, O’Sullivan believed Saturday’s 2000m race was the natural next step.
“It looked to be the race to run in going forward after his last start,” O’Sullivan said.
“It was quite a strong race last start and (runner-up) Iggimacool came out and won at Flemington on Saturday.”
Magnapal worked between races at Donald on Monday and O’Sullivan is delighted with the six-year-old who will need to take another step up on Saturday against some well-performed horses.
A full field of 16 plus four emergencies has been declared for Saturday’s race with import The United States first emergency and in danger of missing a start.
O’Sullivan was pleased with barrier seven and Magnapal could start from gate five if the emergencies don’t gain a start.
The trainer said Magnapal was aided by a good barrier and a good ride last start from Luke Currie which made a difference and helped deliver the horse’s biggest win.
“He’s going as good as we can have him going. As good as he has ever gone, anyway,” O’Sullivan said.
“I’m sure he’ll be competitive. I don’t know that he’ll be better than them, but I’m certain he won’t disgrace himself.”