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Oliver happier after Exospheric gallop

Damien Oliver Jockey & Exospheric Horse
Damien Oliver has partnered Exospheric at the Werribee quarantine centre ahead of the Caulfield Cup.

A sharper piece of work from Exospheric at Werribee has champion jockey Damien Oliver thinking of a fifth Caulfield Cup.

Oliver went to the Werribee quarantine centre on Tuesday to partner the Lee and Anthony Freedman-trained import for the second time ahead of Saturday’s $3 million race.

With Grey Lion and Gallic Chieftan, who are also undergoing quarantine as galloping partners, Oliver said Exospheric’s action was much better than when he worked the five-year-old in a solo gallop last Friday.

“He was much more switched on today,” Oliver said.

“He was a bit lazy the first time I rode him but I was more pleased today working with a partner.

“He’s a bit of quirky horse. He’s not straight forward but I’m sure come race day we’ll see the best of him.”

Oliver and Freedman combined to win three Caulfield Cups during the 1990s with his last victory coming aboard the Colin Alderson-trained Sky Heights in 1999.

T J Comerford, the travelling foreman for champion Irish trainer Aidan O’Brien, said Sir Issac Newton had grown up since his arrival in Melbourne.

Comerford, who has travelled from Ireland in previous years with other O’Brien runners including Cox Plate winner Adelaide, said Sir Isaac Newton was thriving ahead of the Cup.

“Travelling horses and taking them away from what they’re used to, they change and grow up a bit more,” Comerford said.

“This lad is thriving and he looks magnificent.

“He seems to be doing everything right in his work and I’m very pleased with him.”

Comerford said Sir Isaac Newton was equally efficient over 2000m and 2400m as he displayed when fourth behind Highland Reel over 2400m in the King George Stakes at Ascot before running fourth to Postoned in the Juddmonte International over 2000m in August.

Scottish has continued to please the Godolphin crew.

James Ferguson, assistant trainer to Charlie Appleby, said Scottish had worked well with stablemate Francis Of Assisi on Tuesday.

“He’s quickened off the bend there nicely and the other horse probably wouldn’t have the speed he has, so it was nice for him to have that blow-out,” Ferguson said.

The Andreas Wohler-trained Articus had a quiet morning after galloping on Monday and is the pick of the international runners in the Caulfield Cup at $7.50 with Jameka the market leader at $3.30.

Scottish is rated an $8.50 chance with Exospheric at $11 and Sir Issac Newton at $15.

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