Cumani open to spring carnival alterations

Craig Brennan
Matt Cumani says Australia could use a template based on European racing for any spring changes

Backed by a rich pedigree in overseas racing, Matt Cumani could be the right trainer to provide a fresh insight into any potential changes to the Victorian spring carnival.

Cumani hails from the UK and is the son of highly respected former trainer Luca Cumani and has had a lifetime in racing ahead of setting up his own stable at Ballarat in 2016.

There has been calls from some sections of the racing industry for change, including a push to have Victoria's spring carnival run later into November.

Cumani is not as ingrained in the history of Australian racing as many of his fellow trainers and is prepared to give his horses time between runs.

"Its all relatively new to me and I'm still adapting to the calendar here, learning about its nuances and then making plans for my horses," Cumani said.

"But I have my question marks about why certain races are where they are and the way big races are built towards.

"Maybe if it were to change, it may come back to my way of thinking and a more European way.

"Races may be spaced out a bit more and we have seen a few Australian trainers going that way as well."

Cumani said Australian racing had undergone a number of changes over the past decades with medication rules reconfiguring the turf landscape.

He said that had diminished the dominance geldings once had with fillies and mares more competitive than ever.

Cumani claimed the higher prices paid for yearlings in Australia meant there was an emphasis on keeping colts as entires,.

Coming from the UK, Cumani understands the importance of history and its use in comparing crops of horses from one era to another.

But he said Australia was a relatively young racing nation.

"Its such a changing landscape in Australia that the history of races and where they are in the program is not as important as it is in the UK and Europe where things have been the same for centuries," Cumani said.

"It wouldn't bother me too much to see things change, even dramatically, but it does need to be very well thought through."