Nonconformist booked his way into the $5M Caulfield Cup after a narrow win in Saturday’s MRC Foundation Cup at Caulfield.
Starting a $4.20 favourite in the Group 3, Nonconformist fended off the challenge from Delphi to claim the victory in the 2000m race which offers ballot exemption into the Caulfield Cup in four weeks’ time.
Trained by Grahame Begg, the five-year-old son of Rebel Raider nearly won his way into next month’s Caulfield Cup when second to Mount Popa in the Mornington Cup in March, with Begg calling today’s win “second time lucky.”
“We had a long talk yesterday and then going into this morning about tactics and things like that,” Begg told Racing.com.
“He (Jordan Childs) executed it very, very well and I’m very pleased for Jordan because it’s been a bit hard for him getting back (from injury).
“At least this horse has been very kind to him over a long period of time and he’s had good success on him.
“The horse races really well here and we’re really delighted.”
Nonconformist’s win in the Group 3 was the gelding’s third win at Caulfield, which includes a 3.75 length romp on debut and a victory in last year’s Group 3 Coongy Cup, which also offered ballot exemption to the Caulfield Cup but Begg elected to bypass the race 12 months ago.
After two promising first-up runs in the PB Lawrence Stakes and Feehan Stakes, the five-year-old was set to peak third-up and now looks to have a freshen up before the Cup on October 16.
“It took him his first two or three preparations to work it out,” Begg said.
“If you go back and watch his first start in a race, he tried to run off the track at Pakenham, but once he started to get it all together, he’s shown a bit of X-Factor, especially in his maiden win.
“He’s been a good, handy horse.
“He hasn’t had a lot of luck in a lot of races, but he’s just a solid horse for the stable.
“We’ve looked after him; he’s very lightly raced for a five-year-old.
“We’ve always backed off him and given him time and haven’t over-taxed him
“He’s been rewarding us the whole way through, but hopefully he keeps on rewarding us.”
Nonconformist is now a $15 chance in the Caulfield Cup with online bookmakers.