How Cumani felt watching his former mare win

Matt Cumani felt mixed emotions as he watched his former mare Etah James take out last

“I was really happy for the owners and I called them but obviously I would have loved to have trained her to win the Sydney Cup,” Cumani said.

Cumani is hoping though to win another major race on Saturday as he will have two two-year-olds, Khoekhoe and Coup De Tonerre who will contest the $855,000 The Showdown at Caulfield.

Cumani trained Etah James for most of her career which included last year’s Pakenham Cup and after she finished sixth in the Bagot Handicap she returned to New Zealand.

Her managing owner Mark Lupton then trained her to run third in the Avondale Cup and fourth in the Auckland Cup.

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Jockey Glen Boss rode Etah James to victory in the Sydney Cup. Picture: Getty ImagesSource:Getty Images

“I knew they wanted to run in the Sydney Cup. It was either send her over to me for a week and then I had to get her to Sydney during the COVID crisis which wouldn’t have been easy, or give her to Ciaron (Maher) and David (Eustace) to train who had stables in Sydney,” Cumani said.

Cumani’s pair which will tackle The Showdown ran the quinella at their last start when Khoekoe defeated Coup De Tonerre at Echuca.

“They were both in this field so with the massive prize money on offer you’d be crazy not to go for it. It’s not going to be easy but they are there and in it so why not,” he said.

Cumani said Khoekoe had disappointed at his debut at Ballarat but ran up to what he had shown in a jump-out at Burrumbeet when he swooped home to win at Echuca.


“They are two different types of horses. Coup is a genuine worker and wants to do everything hard while the other Khoekhoe does the bare minimum.”

Cumani said his stable apprentice Fred Kersley would stay with Khoekhoe and as he’s finishing his apprenticeship on Sunday he hoped he would get a farewell present.

“He’s done a lot of work with the horse. He’s a good young jockey and he has a great record with me as he has a strike rate of 17% and if you’d placed a $1 the win on everyone rides he’s had for me you would have won $195.”

Originally published asHow Cumani felt watching his former mare win

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