Darren Weir isn’t getting carried away with long-term aspirations for Puissance De Lune but he might have to if the stayer wins again at Flemington.
Weir will saddle up the last start eight-length Bendigo Cup winner in Saturday’s Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2600m) and said the import hadn’t taken a backward step since his dominant display in the country cup.
He’ll face international opposition in the Queen Elizabeth in the shape of Herbert Power Stakes winner Shahwardi and Godolphin’s Lost In The Moment who was sixth in last year’s Melbourne Cup but missed a start in Tuesday’s race.
“I’m looking forward to it so I can see where he’s at because he’s taking on some better horses,” Weir said.
“If he can take his Bendigo form there you’d reckon he’s a great chance.”
Puissance De Lune is owned by Gerry Ryan who is a part-owner of 2010 Melbourne Cup winner Americain.
Weir said the Bendigo Cup had been the aim for the stayer and he was pleasantly surprised at the winning margin.
“He looks in great order going into Saturday,” Weir said.
“Bendigo was the goal when he came in this preparation and then if he went well at Bendigo we had this race as a maybe.
“We knew we had him in great order last start, but to be honest we weren’t expecting him to do that.”
Glen Boss again rides Puissance De Lune and Weir said he would leave it up to him where to be in the run after the three-time Melbourne Cup-winning jockey placed the stayer outside the leader at Bendigo.
Lost In The Moment will be chasing a third win in the race for Sheikh Mohammed’s Godolphin operation following victories to Hatha Anna in 2001 and Fantastic Love in 2004.
He missed a start in the Melbourne Cup and is one of eight runners in the Queen Elizabeth eligible for a $100,000 bonus if successful after they were balloted out of Tuesday’s race.
Last year’s winner Ironstein is back to defend his crown and is also eligible for the bonus.
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