Murphy's law over Yeats Cup chance

Andrew Murphy, supervising Yeats's Melbourne Cup bid, may not be a 'mathematician or a scientist' but he knows how good Aiden O'Brien's horse is.

Andrew Murphy, supervising Yeats's Melbourne Cup bid, may not be a 'mathematician or a scientist' but he knows how good Aiden O'Brien's horse is.

After trainer Jamie Osborne said that the three kilogram pull in the weights his horse Geordieland (second) has over Yeats (first) from the Goodwood Cup will see the tables turned from that race, Murphy told a media conference today that he holds no fears for his star galloper.

"Yeats probably deserves to be the shortest-price of the European horses, I agree with Jamie that Geordieland is a great price (15-1) for the turnaround in weights, we beat him easy that day though," Murphy said.

Yeats has had a charmed preparation since travelling over to Melbourne, with Murphy revealing that he lost just two kilograms in weight on the flight over - which he put back on the same day.

"Yeats is fine, I am neither a mathematician nor a scientist, but we have a fit, healthy horse and I am expecting a big run," said Murphy.

Osborne again reiterated that the Goodwood Cup may prove to be the most important lead-up race form-wise for the Melbourne Cup, and said that the 'maths' is in Geordieland's favour to beat home not only Yeats at Flemington on Tuesday, but also fellow English rivals Land 'N Stars and Glistening.

"We were beaten and eased down five lengths in the Goodwood Cup. It was Geordieland's first run for us and I don't think we had him as fit as we have him now," Osborne said.

"And if you watch that race the two horses, Yeats and Geordieland, came through the pack.

"We were chasing Yeats and you could probably argue a furlong-and-a-half out we were probably going better than him and the fitness just took its toll.

"Frankie (Dettori) had a little look and he realised he wasn't going to beat Yeats and Geordieland was eased down. And with the three kilo pull with him, the maths says we have a fair chance of beating him this time.

"If you add into the equation the fact I think my horse is better now, well, it's not difficult to make a case for it."

On why Geordieland can finish ahead of the Luca Cumani-trained Glistening, who was two places ahead of him in second in the Ebor at York, Osborne again brought out the calculator.

"We're closely handicapped with Glistening, who is a horse I think you can't ignore. But we get 1.3 kilo pull with him for the near two lengths he was in front of us at York in the Ebor," he said.

"And Glistening had a much better run through the race on that occasion. So I'm not saying that we're going to win the Melbourne Cup, but I am saying that we've got a very fair chance at turning the form around on (both Glistening and Yeats)."

"At 14 or 15-1, I think we are grossly overpriced to win the (Melbourne Cup)."

Cumani then took his turn to 'wind up' Geordieland's trainer for his overt confidence, saying: "Osborne is like a green grocer, a pound here a pound there.

"There is nothing in it, a pound here or there. You need luck in running, the right position and rhythm and to follow the right horse.

"If Geordieland gets it he'll finish above us, otherwise we will finish above him."

Meanwhile, the underdog among connections from Britain, Jamie Poulton of 100-1 outsider Land 'N Stars fame, believes his 'tough little horse' can atone for a 'hopeless effort' in the Caulfield Cup when he finished last of 18.

"Unlike Jamie I think the Melbourne Cup is a very unique race and I don't think size or matter has anything to do with this race," Poulton said in reference to the weight debate.

"I think it is a very, very tough race and will take a seriously tough, hard individual.

"Everyone is looking at that Goodwood race and it was a seriously good race won by a seriously good horse.

"But we were far too close to what was an electric pace, a pace that would frighten the life out of most people. We were right there until the furlong out and still picked up money from that race.

"We can turn it around, Land 'N Stars looked good this morning and his work the last four or five days he has really come into himself. His skin and coat looks great.

"He is a tough, hard little horse, he will scrap and some of these precious colts might not be keen for a scrap."

But regardless of which of the four horses wins the mini 'Battle Of Britain', the fact remains that local horse Tawqeet - though he is a former English-based horse too - remains favourite for the race at around 4-1 ahead of Yeats (5-1) and exciting Victoria Derby winner Efficient 7-1.

Speaking after the barrier draw, trainer David Hayes said: "I wouldn't swap Tawqeet for any other runner in the race that's for sure."

Efficient is seeking to become the first three-year-old since 1941 to win the race and the Zabeel gelding has had just six career starts.

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