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Best Solution wins Godolphin’s second G1 Caulfield Cup

Mike Hedge

A brilliant horse, perfectly prepared and beautifully ridden has won Godolphin’s second G1 Caulfield Cup and raced his way into contention for Australia’s greatest race.

Best Solution, the winner of G1 races in Germany at his two previous starts, was slow out of the gates, six-wide in the early stages and under siege entering the home straight.

But he survived by a half-head to win the A$5-million race and record Godolphin’s 26th G1 victory for 2018.

The win came as the culmination of a mission planned by Godolphin’s founder His Highness Sheikh Mohammed and trainer Saeed bin Suroor and executed by a team that has now won G1 races on consecutive weekends in Melbourne.

“It was Sheikh Mohammed’s decision to send this horse to Australia and it’s great to see Best Solution come after winning two G1 races in Germany,” Saeed said.

“It’s very satisfying.”

Best Solution was one of the slowest into stride from his wide gate, but jockey Pat Cosgrave made a bold move to be outside the leaders after 300m and then found the perfect position, one off the fence in fourth place with 2000m to run.

Cosgrave, however, brushed aside any praise.

"I can’t believe it. I’ve got to give all credit to the horse,” he said. 

“I got into a nice position but I worked so hard to get where I wanted to be. I was five deep out of the first turn and I had to wait a while to get my position. 

“Then I had to commit earlier than I should have. He was there to be beaten.”

Cosgrave made his winning move passing the 400m when challenges began to come from The Taj Mahal and The Cliffsofmoher.

With 300m to run Best Solution had dashed two lengths clear, and it was left to Homesman, who had enjoyed a perfect run, to issue the final challenge.

But the Godolphin runner fought him off to score narrowly with The Cliffsofmoher one and three-quarter lengths further back in third place.

The win came 10 years after All The Good carried the royal blue colours to victory in the same race.

For Saeed, it was an eighth G1 win for the year and set the scene for another in next month’s G1 Melbourne Cup, a race in which Godolphin runners have been placed four times.

Saeed acknowledged the challenge that is ahead of Best Solution, but he believes the horse is capable of scoring Godolphin’s first win in the race.

“The Melbourne Cup is a big race for us, it would be a dream to win it, but we will try,” he said.

On the same Caulfield card, Godolphin’s Best Of Days dead-heated in the G3 Coongy Cup, surviving a protest to hold onto his share of the honours.

And at Randwick in Sydney, the filly Resin won the G3 The Nivison, becoming the 150th Stakes winner for her sire Exceed And Excel.