United states: Cummings heads west to complete national sweep

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Cummings has won  60 stakes races for the year and is looking for his tenth group 1 with Best Of Days as he comes off a long spring campaign, which started in the Winx Stakes in August.

“We had this in mind all the way through the preparation. Perth cannot be an afterthought,” Cummings said. “He had a long lay off and just needed racing to get him fit.

“He has been getting better with every run and I really think he gets into this race with a good weight compared to the others.”

Best Of Days has been mixing with the best, running in four group 1s and a couple of group 2s in his six-run preparation in Sydney and Melbourne.

He is going to like the firm conditions at Ascot, and fast-run, tough mile will be where he can excel.

James Cummings

Most recently, the imported miler only just failed to overcome a wide passage when beaten noses into third in the Crystal Mile at Moonee Valley before being trapped wide again when a brave fifth in his Cantala Stakes defence.

“He is really fit, and those runs are  very good form to be bring over here,” Cummings said. “He is going to like the firm conditions at Ascot, and fast-run, tough mile will be where he can excel.”

Widespread steps up from midweek company at Bendigo to group 2 level but has earned his trip West by winning his only two starts as a three-year-old.


“We were looking for the right one to take over for this race and he put his hand up,” Cummings said. “He has drawn well in gate one and it will be interesting to see how he measures up.”

Cummings admits stayer Tally,  the Rosehill Gold Cup winner last start, might find the 1400m of the Carbine Club of WA Stakes a bit short, but it is the perfect race to have him at his top for the final group 1 of the year, the Kingston Town Stakes, in two weeks.

“We want to keep the sprint in his legs and, under the conditions of the race, he gets in very well,” Cummings said. “He is in good form, and we have freshened him up to cope with coming back from the 2000m.

“He will run well, but his goal is the Kingston Town.”

Racing writer for The Sydney Morning Herald

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