Majestic Cruiser passes standing start test

By Adam Hamilton

The odds are firming for Australia to have two New Zealand Cup runners.

Jason Grimson’s dual Group 1 winner Majestic Cruiser passed an important standing-start trial “test” at Menangle yesterday.

Now the emerging training force is working through the logistics of how to get to and from Addington but still be able to have a serious crack at the Inter Dominion, which starts in Ballarat on November 26.

Of course, Grimson wants to defend the Inter Dominion title he won last year with Boncel Benjamin. Majestic Cruiser, I Cast No Shadow and Fire Fox are his leading contenders.

Back to Majestic Cruiser and he stepped well from the standing-start tapes in a two-horse trial with stablemate Doubtless Bay between races at Menangle yesterday.

“He seemed comfortable and handled it well,” Grimson said. “That was a must before we started looking into flights.”

Grimson has been burning to tackle the NZ Cup since he scored the most satisfying win of his blossoming career with Majestic Cruiser in NZ when the stayer upstaged the country’s best pacers in the Group 1 Messenger at Alexandra Park in April.

“It was really special, a huge thrill,” he said. “The NZ Cup has been on the radar since, but for a while I thought it was going to be too hard getting flights and stuff.

“It seems better now. There are flights and he’s an experienced traveller, nothing seems to fuss him. It wouldn't bother me getting there a few days before the race.

“The NZ Cup would really suit him. He’s such a terrific stayer. He showed it in the Messenger and again in the Blacks A Fake.”

Now it’s all down to sorting flights and travel between NZ’s islands, both for the race and getting back to Australia in time to prepare for the Inter Dominion.

Meanwhile, Rock N Roll Doo is almost challenging for NZ Cup favouritism in Aussie markets after his breathtaking Victoria Cup win last Saturday night.

The Mick Stanley-trained four-year-old is into $3.50, just behind Self Assured at $3.20.

Rock N Roll Doo is booked on a flight tomorrow with defending Cup champ Copy That from Melbourne to Auckland.

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