Duais takes out the Group 1 Australian Cup

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Hawkesbury trainer Edward Cummings claimed the Group 1 Australian Cup (2000m) with his galloper Duais on Saturday at Flemington.

The four-year-old mare was stepping up to the 2000m after an unlucky mid-field finish in the Group 1 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) on a Heavy 10 at Randwick last start.

It was the second Group 1 win for the daughter of Shamus Award after she won the Queensland Oaks (2200m) as a three-year-old.

Jockey Josh Parr was happy to settle his mount back towards the rear of the field as the Peter Moody-trained Spanish Mission set a strong tempo in front.

The Sydney hoop then took his runner to the outside, before unleashing a powerful finish to score an impressive victory. Fellow Sydneysider and race favourite Think It Over finished two lengths away in second place.

“I’m elated. I must say I’m struggling for words, which isn’t too common with me. What a thrill to ride a Group 1 winner at Flemington,” Parr told Racing.com in an interview after the race.

Parr was confident with his ride coming into the Group 1 feature.

“I was full of confidence. With a pinch of luck, we would have won the Chipping Norton. That was evident with her final furlong, it was very strong.

“So confident when I saw her here today. Edward assured me she was in great shape, and she certainly was.”

The grandson of the late Bart Cummings showed a hint of the timing that the great trainer was so well known for, in a race that his grandfather won 13 times.

“We always wanted to be here, it was always part of the plan,” Cummings said.

“We knew that we did something similar last preparation,” he said referring to winning the Group 3 Coongy Cup in the Spring over 2000m when third-up from a spell. “We always felt that getting here to Flemington would suit her down to the ground, 2000m third-up. She’s done it before; it was there for everyone to see if they had really bothered to look.”

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