Sydney based jockey Kerrin McEvoy today won a third Melbourne Cup aboard the Godolphin owned and Charlie Appleby trained Cross Counter while Hong Kong’s Zac Purton finished fourth in the feature and picked up a Listed win in the following race.
It was a first Cup win for Sheikh Mohammed’s Godolphin operation and came 20 years after its first attempt. Appleby became the first Englishman to win leading home a British trained trifecta.
Purton’s mount Finche finished fourth in a performance which the jockey described as excellent.
“It was an excellent effort from Finche in the Cup. I think if the track had been firmer he might have gone a lot closer. Chris (Waller) has done a great job with him.”
Hong Kong’s champion jockey then won the black type Furphy Plate on Kaonic for Waller, beating the two-time LONGINES International Jockeys’ Championship winner Ryan Moore on stablemate Life Less Ordinary. Moore had escaped injury when his Cup mount Thecliffsofmoher broke down shortly after the start and was euthanised.
The Cup was also quinellaed by past IJC winners with McEvoy heading home Hugh Bowman on Marmelo. Bowman will need to successfully appeal a 35 meeting ban from stewards, imposed after the Cup, to take his place in the 5 December 2018 challenge.
Purton said of his winner: “My horse jumped brilliantly. Just put himself in a lovely spot, in a great rhythm. He towed me into the race really, really well. I was always very confident. It’s just nice to get a winner on a day like today.’
Purton, fresh from his win last Sunday on LONGINES Hong Kong Cup contender Time Warp, returns immediately to Hong Kong to ride at Happy Valley on Wednesday night and will look forward to Saturday’s feature race at Sha Tin and defending his 2017 IJC title on 5 December.