Jockey Mark Zahra has received back-to-back Melbourne Cups, piloting With out A Struggle to win the Melbourne Cup at Flemington.
- With out A Struggle has received the 2023 Melbourne Cup, forward of Soulcombe and Sheraz
- Jockey Mark Zahra received back-to-back Melbourne Cups
- With out A Struggle turns into the primary horse since 2001 to with the Melbourne and Caulfield cups in the identical yr
Soulcombe, who missed the beginning, stormed dwelling to take second.
Sheraz got here dwelling third and Ashrun battled arduous for fourth.
It was one other triumph for Zahra, who rode Gold Journey to win final yr’s Melbourne Cup.
He grew to become the primary jockey since Glen Boss on Makybe Diva to win consecutive Melbourne Cups.
The final time a jockey received back-to-back Melbourne Cups on completely different horses was Harry White on Arwon in 1978 and Hyperno in 1979.
The end result vindicated Zahra’s determination to get off the experience on Gold Journey, who received final yr’s race and completed seventeenth, in favour of With out A Struggle.
“Your first [Cup win] is actual elation — you’ll be able to’t actually imagine that you’ve got truly achieved it — and this yr it is related elation however you understand you are able to do it,” Zahra stated.
“You go in with much more confidence.
“It is nonetheless among the best emotions on the earth however after I crossed the road I used to be like, ‘I informed you so. I knew I picked the fitting horse and I informed you I may win it’.”
Zahra had chosen With out A Struggle simply 10 days earlier than the Cup, hours after he steered Gold Journey to fifth within the Cox Plate.
He revealed racegoers have been “giving it to me” in regards to the determination at the same time as he left the mounting yard to go to the limitations on Tuesday.
“I used to be on a horse you’ll be able to sit on. He is received an electrical flip of foot and he pulled me all the way in which to the road,” Zahra stated after the win.
“The celebrities aligned for Gold Journey final yr and aligned for this horse this yr.
“Just some issues and the way in which he received the Caulfield Cup, I used to be assured he would run it.”
Zahra acknowledged he let his pleasure get to him along with his celebration which went just a little awry.
“Giving the 2 fingers [signal] for 2 winners. I do not know what I used to be pondering. Fool!” he stated.
With out A Struggle firmed as a Cup contender after successful the Caulfield Cup final month.
No horse since 2001 had accomplished Melbourne-Caulfield Cup double, when Ethereal received each.
Irish raider Vauban — educated by Willie Mullins — had began favorite for the large race, however completed again within the discipline after looming as an opportunity across the flip.
Three of the primary possibilities had been drawn collectively close to the within, with Vauban in barrier three, Gold Journey in barrier two and Soulcombe in barrier 4.
The latter continued his behavior of lacking the beginning, this time by at the least three lengths, however he got here slowly into the race beneath jockey Joao Moreira.
There have been a gaggle of horses who took the lead early, with Serpentine pushing ahead from the within barrier, together with Archer Stakes winner Kalapour, Future Historical past, Magical Mission and 2019 winner Vow and Declare.
Zahra held his nerve when these leaders went out arduous on the midway mark.
Once they received to the flip there have been loads of hopes, with Vauban coming across the outdoors of Future Historical past, with Vow and Declare and Absurde.
However With out A Struggle got here down the centre of the monitor, timed completely by Zahra, to come back clear with 100m to go.
In the long run, it was a strong win, with Soulcombe an enormous performer racing dwelling for second.
The French-bred Chris Waller-trained horse Sheraz once more confirmed his capability on the 3,200m with a high quality third.
The Ciaron Maher — David Eustace-trained Proper You Are trailed dwelling in final place. It was checked by vets, and located to be heat-stressed with no vital well being points.
Proper You Are, Alenquer and Gold Journey reportedly pulled up lame after the race.
The win was the primary for father-and-son trainers Anthony and Lee Freedman, the brother and son of five-time Cup winner Lee Freedman.
– with AAP
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