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Caulfield wins set Flit and Trekking on a path to two of Australia’s biggest races

Mike Hedge

A desperate, last-stride lunge earned Flit a G1 victory in Saturday’s Thousand Guineas at Caulfield and a possible start in Australia’s most prestigious race, the $5 million G1 WS Cox Plate.

And to wrap up a landmark day for Godolphin, the talented sprinter Trekking won the G2 Schillaci Stakes and a place in the country’s richest race, the $14 million The Everest. 

Flit is the only filly among the remaining entrants in the Cox Plate, run at Moonee Valley on Saturday, 26 October, in which she would carry only 47.5kg under the weight-for-age conditions.

"We've got that decision to make," Cummings said.

"We can let the dust settle on today, we have to enjoy the win in a target race."

Flit had only one, shared success to her name before today’s race, but had shown herself to be one of the better fillies among Godolphin’s vintage two-year-old crop of last season.

As well as her dead-heat win in the G3 Thoroughbred Breeders’ Stakes at Flemington in March, she had a pair of G2 second placings to her credit.

Her only blemish was a ninth placing in her lead-up to the Thousand Guineas, but both Cummings and winning rider Hugh Bowman said she should have won that race with something in hand.

“There’s not much doubt she should have won here two weeks ago,” Bowman said.

“She showed today what she would have done in that race.”

Flit again seemed to be in difficulties when midfield in a slowly run race, but she surged through the leading pack in the final 100m to beat Missile Mantra by a nose.

"She's a quality filly and it wasn't a real test today," Bowman said.

"It was just a sprint home, so I don't think we saw the best of her. I think if it was a genuinely run event she would have won more comfortably."

For Trekking, timing was everything as he arrived with an overpowering finish to win the Schillaci by a long neck to claim the last place in the field for the Everest, run at Randwick on Saturday, 19 October.

The success also left Cummings and his team on 99 Stakes wins since he took over as head Australian trainer in July 2017.

While Godolphin will have Alizee in The Everest in its own slot, Trekking, as the winner of the Schillaci, is entitled to the slot owned by the Melbourne Racing Club.

“We ran in this race with The Everest in mind, but we won’t make a decision straight away,” Cummings said.

“I want to see how the horse pulls up, but it will come down to more than that."

“It will be discussed by the team before anything is finalised.”

The 12-horse field for The Everest is made up by horses who run in slots purchased by various entities and valued at $600,000 each.