English jockey Neil Callan has spent the last three weeks studying videos to learn how to win the Melbourne Cup on international raider Jukebox Jury.
Callan said he had also armed himself with the advice of 12-time Cup winning trainer Bart Cummings.
“I will be having nightmares about the Melbourne Cup,” Callan said.
“I have been watching videos of it for the last three weeks and seen the last 12 years of it.
“I am very, very clued up after seeing that many runnings.”
Callan, 33, is on his first Australian visit and said he had also heard Cummings talk about the Cup.
“He would be the best man to take knowledge from and he says most Melbourne Cups are lost by kicking too soon, but at end of the day I know my horse will stay and he’s very, very tenacious and very tough.
“He is not one to fall in a heap. He will keep coming and it is just a matter of timing it right.”
Callan said he had no plans to carbon copy any particular winning ride of the last 12 years but was mindful of the possibilities.
He said Jukebox Jury, prepared by British-based trainer Mark Johnston, was adaptable and could race anywhere in the field heading off a misconception that he is purely a front-runner.
“He is very straight forward, very uncomplicated,” Callan said.
“He doesn’t have to make the running.
“He showed that in the Canadian International two years ago when he came from behind and finished second.
“He also won a Group One (Von Europa) in Germany sitting off the pace and being produced late.”
Callan said Jukebox Jury needed to be ridden where he was comfortable.
“So long as he is in his own stride, in a rhythm and he’s relaxed I think that is the key to him,” Callan said.
“Wherever that maybe in the race is where he will be.”
Jukebox Jury, $15 in latest betting, is considered the form horse of the internationals having won France’s Prix Kergorlay and dead-heated for first in the Irish St Leger at his last two starts.
The six year-old ran wide up the straight in the Prix Kergorlay but Callan said that the planned tactics to shift out for the firmer ground had been misinterpreted as waywardness.
He didn’t ride Jukebox Jury in the St Leger on a slow track but he was full of admiration for the horse’s effort to hang on for share of the spoils carrying 62kg, 5kg more than he has in the Cup.
“In Ireland there was a very strong headwind, pretty testing ground and they were rolling a good five furlongs so it was a great performance,” Callan said.
Callan arrived in Australia three days ago and was thrilled with how well Jukebox Jury was after giving him a light canter at Werribee.
“He was squealing and that says enough for me,” Callan said.
“He looks a million dollars.”
Silvestre De Sousa will ride Johnston’s other Cup runner Fox Hunt ($31).