Jockey Craig Williams rides Vow And Declare to victory in the Lexus Melbourne Cup. (AAP Image/Michael Dodge)
Jockey Craig Williams rides Vow And Declare to victory in the Lexus Melbourne Cup. (AAP Image/Michael Dodge)

Owners saddle up to watch star runner from afar

RACING: Anthony Lanskey’s deck he built with his Melbourne Cup winnings is set for a workout this weekend as he saddles up to watch Vow and Declare from afar.

The co-owner of the famous Cup-winning gelding will sit back in his new lair as a “nervous wreck”, ready to ride home his star horse at the Queen Elizabeth Stakes.

Vow and Declare faces a red-hot field in arguably the toughest race he’s had since that hero ride in November.

While he surprised expectations in his comeback ride after a long spell to place at the Australian Cup, this field is Group 1 racing at its best.

A win at the Queen Elizabeth Stakes would push his winnings past $6 million.

“It’s certainly a tough assignment, and no disrespect to the Australian Cup but this field’s a cracker,” Lanskey said.

Lachlan and Anthony Lanskey with Vow and Declare.
Lachlan and Anthony Lanskey with Vow and Declare.

“There could be any number there. A lot of danger.”

Vow and Declare ($18) is a slight outsider to win the Group 1 race, behind Magic Millions galloper Danon Premium ($3.60) and Addeybb ($4.60).

Cup-winning jockey Craig Williams is unable to ride due to COVID-19 restrictions, so the ever-capable Glen Boss is taking the reins.

Lanskey had always planned to build the deck but the winnings fast-tracked it.

“Wherever has the biggest television set-up, that’s where I’ll be,” he said.

Saturday will be the first time the syndicate has been unable to watch Vow and Declare race as a group.

“It’s different when you’re at the races and you can go see him,” Lanskey said.

“We had to watch the Australian Cup from a pub in Brisbane as we couldn’t go.

“The group chat has been copping a hiding.

“I’ll be a nervous wreck all day.”