Q & A with Cox Plate contender Castelvecchio

Dundeel's son Castelvecchio stormed to victory in last April's ATC Champagne S. G1. (PHOTO: Bronwen Healy)

Two days out from the $5 million Ladbrokes Cox Plate G1, we caught up with Arrowfield graduate Castelvecchio at Flemington where he and his stablemate Morton’s Fork are based. 

Champion New Zealand trainer Murray Baker, who will saddle up Madison County in the Crystal Mile G2, had just paid a visit to the son of Dundeel and St. Therese and declared him “the spitting image of his father.” And Baker should know: he and co-trainer Andrew Forsman prepared Dundeel to win six Australian Group 1 races in a spectacular 19-start, $5.3 million career. 

Richard Litt, who trains Castelvecchio for owners Ottavio & Wendy Galletta, said, “I couldn’t be happier with him, he’s taken it all in his stride, and we’re very lucky and grateful to be here.” 

The 3YO son of Dundeel and St. Therese, already a Group 1 winner at two and Spring Champion G1 runner-up two weeks ago, was in an ebullient mood when he answered our questions:

Arrowfield: Who’s your favourite person?
Castelvecchio: Definitely Richard, because he pays my feed bill!

A: What’s something that the world doesn’t know about me?
C: I sleep with my back legs crossed.

A: What’s your best asset when you race?
C: My enthusiasm!

A: How has this week gone for you?
C: It’s been fantastic, I’m loving it, it’s like a very cruisy holiday – so far.

A: Are you liking The Valley?
C: Absolutely, I love it.

A: And what about Craig Williams?
C: He’s great, and I hope I like him even more after Saturday!

A: What about the draw? (Castelvecchio will jump from gate 3)
C:  It’s perfect, and gives Craig and me all the options.

A: So what’s your plan for the race?
C: I’d like to be stalking the speed.

A: What other Cox Plate runner are you most afraid of?
C: None of them.

A: How will you celebrate if you win the Cox Plate?
C: I’ll have a good sleep and then a five-week holiday, and Richard will have a cheese burger!

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