- Amade won the Geelong Cup in shock result
- Group 3 race, $500,000 up for grabs in prizemoney
- First Immortal and Virtuous Circle favoured by bookies
Irish stayer Amade has won the 2023 Geelong Cup in a shock result – and could now feature in the Melbourne Cup on November 7.
Ridden by Zac Spain, the $34 chance flew home late to snare the Group 3 event and $500,000 in prizemoney.
Magical Lagoon, with veteran Damien Oliver on board, set the tone early, but come the home straight, it was anyone’s race.
Spain found some space when it mattered, and soared the winning post, finishing ahead of Ashrun ($1.85) and Sir Lucan ($4.60).
There was plenty of drama pre-race, with First Immortal given a vet examination after appearing to hit his snout as the field prepared to jump.
Jockey Jamie Kah kept her composure and gave him every chance, but it proved to Amade’s race in a boilover.
First Immortal (pictured, left) was the pick of many racing experts ahead of the Geelong Cup on Wednesday – but finished mid-field
Jockey Zac Spain bided his time and found the way to the line to win the Geelong Cup
Trainers Mark Kavanagh (pictured, right) and Levi Kavanagh had high hopes for First Immortal
Speaking post-race, a jubilant Spain said the wet track was always going to suit his ride ‘being an older horse’.
‘The sting out of the track was always going to help him,’ he said.
Trained by Phillip Stokes, Amade can now compete in the Melbourne Cup in 13 days time if connections choose to go down that path.
Bet Right CEO Anthony Waller felt it was going to take a special run to beat First Immortal.
‘He is chasing a Melbourne Cup start, and showed his class in the Living Legends Handicap at Caulfield last month,’ Waller told Daily Mail Australia.
‘He was also very unlucky to finish second in the Group 3 Bart Cummings at Flemington.
‘Despite drawing awkwardly in barrier 14, First Immortal has the early speed to overcome this and with gun jockey Jamie Kah on board, should give backers a good sight.’