Five years after missing the winning ride on Dunaden, jockey Craig Williams gets another chance to add his name to the Melbourne Cup honour roll when he rides international visitor Qewy.
Williams needs a Melbourne Cup to join a select group of jockeys to have won what is considered the grand slam of Australian racing – Melbourne Cup, Caulfield Cup, Cox Plate and Golden Slipper.
Williams was suspended in 2011 when the horse he was due to ride, Dunaden, raced to victory at Flemington.
Like Dunaden, Qewy heads into Tuesday’s $6 million race at Flemington after winning the Geelong Cup at his Australian debut.
Qewy’s Charlie Appleby-trained stablemate Oceanographer, who finished third at Geelong, boosted that form line with his fast-finishing Lexus Stakes win on Saturday.
“His form keeps getting franked all the time,” Williams said.
“The stable is really happy with him. He seems to be very uncomplicated.
“They tell me the horse has only thrived and improved. And I’m really looking forward to the opportunity.”
Williams has won two Cox Plates on Fields Of Omagh and Pinker Pinker, two Caulfield Cups on Southern Speed and Dunaden and a Golden Slipper on Miss Finland.
But the Melbourne Cup is the race he covets most.
“It’s top of the bucket list,” Williams said.
“And if I win it will be the greatest race on earth. And if I’m not successful then it will be just another handicap and it will be on next year.”
GRAND SLAM WINNING JOCKEYS: