Exciting sprinter Velocette ran a brilliant 29.54 to win the first Schweppes Melbourne Cup Prelude at Sandown Park tonight.
Trained by three-time Melbourne Cup winner Graeme Bate, Velocette ($3.50) began quickly from box 6 and was never threatened, powering to the line 10.5 lengths ahead of Sondaor ($8.10). Favourite All Caution ($1.80) was unplaced.
Velocette has now won five of his 11 Sandown Park starts, and the win came just a day after another Bate runner, Hastings Bale, won in 29.56 at his race debut.
In the other Preludes run on the night, Stevan Shinner’s impressive youngster Invisiting Me ($2.60) continued his good form, winning Prelude 2 in 29.88.
Trew Millions overcame considerable interference to win his Prelude in 30.09, while Sydney raider Thai Alert saluted in the night’s final Prelude, winning in 29.99 at his first look at the track.
The winner of each Prelude automatically earns a berth in the heats of the $250,000 Group 1 Schweppes Melbourne Cup. The 2008 Schweppes Melbourne Cup will be run on Thursday 27 November.