Champion Kiwi trainer Murray Baker will start the 2015 Melbourne Cup build-up with his Australian and New Zealand Derby winner Mongolian Khan next week.
The son of Holy Roman Emperor hasn’t raced since he won his second blue-riband at Randwick on April 6. The victory saw the colt become the first to win the New Zealand and Australian Derbies since the great Bonecrusher in 1986.
“If he’s going to run in the Melbourne Cup he needs to get under way pretty quickly,” Baker told the New Zealand Herald. “The Cup comes around a lot quicker than you think each year and you can’t win it if you’re not ready.
“He looks very well, I’ve been out to see him and I’m very satisfied.
“He’s a great stayer and he’s got tactical speed, just the type for a Melbourne Cup.”
Being a dual Group I Derby winner Mongolian Khan will receive a handicap that will get the rising four-year-old get into the race. If all goes according to Baker’s plans he will become the trainer’s fifth Melbourne Cup starter.
Baker’s first experience of the Melbourne Cup was in 2002 when Prized Gem finished 14th. Australian Derby winner Nom Du Jeu then finished eighth in 2008 before Harris Tweed recorded fifth placings in the 2009 and 2010 Melbourne Cups.
Baker said “it’s almost certain” Mongolian Khan will only race in Australia during his Melbourne Cup campaign.