IN Racing
Highview proud to have another Cup contender
Highview Stud will continue their strong legacy of Melbourne Cup representatives with Daqiansweet Junior, last year's sixth placegetter, returning for a second shot at the iconic feature at Flemington on Tuesday.
Paul Vettise, LOVERACING.NZ News Desk | November 06, 2023
Daqiansweet Junior. (Bruno Cannatelli)

Highview will continue its proud history with the Gr.1 Lexus Melbourne Cup (3200m) when proven distance performer Daqiansweet Junior makes his second appearance in the Flemington feature on Tuesday.

While delighted to have another farm graduate in the line-up, the Waikato nursery’s expectations of further success in the time-honoured event are being kept in check.

Trained by Phillip Stokes, Daqiansweet Junior is currently an $80 chance and will be partnered by expatriate New Zealand jockey Daniel Stackhouse.

“He ran sixth in it last year so he obviously gets the trip and he’s got a lightweight, but he hasn’t done that much this year,” Highview Principal Brent Gillovic said.

“He wasn’t a bad fourth last time out, but they haven’t exposed him much. It’s not a Bart Cummings-style preparation as he hasn’t done a lot of miles.”

Daqiansweet Junior rounded off his preparation when he finished in behind the major players in the Gr.2 Herbert Power Handicap (2400m) at Caulfield.

Highview’s place in Melbourne Cup history was famously secured in 1991 when graduate Let’s Elope was victorious for the late Cummings following a golden run of form that previously saw the Nassipour mare claim the Gr.1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) and the Gr.1 Mackinnon Stakes (2000m).

“We bred her so we’ve had a bit of luck in the race and we also bred London Bridge, who was by Grosvenor, and he ran in the Cup, as did Catchmeifyoucan, who was by Senor Pete,” Gillovic said.

“It’s not a bad record considering the number of horses off the farm.”

By former stud resident Sweet Orange out of the Keeper mare Paulette, Daqiansweet Junior was initially passed in at New Zealand Bloodstock’s Ready to Run Sale at Karaka where he was offered by Regal Farm.

“I leased the mare Paulette off the Sunlight Trust and bred her to Sweet Orange and, at that time, I packaged up a few mares for the Inner Mongolia Rider Horse Industry and she was one of them,” Gillovic said.

“They sold Daqiansweet Junior to one of their clients and he ended up with Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman.

“He looked very promising and they got an offer from Phill Cataldo for OTI and they cashed him up.”

Daqiansweet Junior won twice in New Zealand before he relocated to Australia where he has added a further five victories to his record, including the Gr.2 Adelaide Cup (3200m) and also finished third in the Gr.1 Sydney Cup (3200m).

Daqiansweet Junior Gr.1 Melbourne Cup Sweet Orange Highview Stud Phillip Stokes Daniel Stackhouse