Trainer Gavin Bedggood is predicting a bold showing from Surprise Baby when the one-time Melbourne Cup favourite returns to Flemington to take his chance in Saturday's Australian Cup.
The seven-year-old has had just two runs since finishing 13th in the 2020 running of the Melbourne Cup and having resumed with a promising fourth in last month's Group 3 Carlyon Cup at Caulfield he can be backed at 33/1 for this weekend's assignment. You can follow the action via our Sports Live Streaming platform.
That last run came over 1600 metres and Bedggood is looking forward to seeing Surprise Baby step up in distance for the Group 1 contest over 2000 metres.
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"I thought he put the writing on the wall with his first-up run at Caulfield," Bedggood said. "He ran the third quickest 600 metres for the race and quickest last 200 metres. His run was full of merit and he is better at trips at 2000 metres and beyond.
"The step up in distance and back to Flemington, where he has predominantly won his best races, he is ready to run a big race," he said.
Bedggood has been pleased with Surprise Baby's work at home ahead of Saturday and despite the apparent lack of recent match practice he believes a good run is on the cards.
"I have been really happy with him," the trainer continued. "His fitness is spot on, that won't be an excuse on Saturday. He is a horse that has run his best races at a mile and a half and beyond.
"He is fit and very sound and has done a treat in-between runs.
"He had a jump-out last Monday at Cranbourne over 1400 metres and we haven't left any stone unturned. I am a realist - but I think he can run a really big race on Saturday."
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