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Mulaqen returns to winning form with blinkers on

Blinkers proved the key to Mulaqen snapping a 10-month drought in Saturday’s 1Print Craig Opie Cup (2500m) at Moonee Valley.

Glen Boss could not believe that Mulaqen, which had not won since he scored at Randwick early last November, had not previously raced in blinkers.

Boss rode the Chris Waller-trained seven-year-old at trackwork at Moonee Valley on Tuesday and felt the horse was having blinkers re-applied.

He said he was surprised to discover the gelding had never raced in them.

“That was the key to him,” Boss said.

“He travelled in a controlling position all the way and he had a bit more turn of foot than what he’s shown.

“He’s been running well without winning and not being beaten too far. Sometimes you need to find that little thing to switch them back on.

“The blinkers were the key to him, they are an amazing tool.”

Mulaqen, a drifter from $5 to $7.50, scooted clear at the entrance to the straight and was untroubled to post a soft one length win from Count Encosta, the $2.30 favourite, which was under duress as far out as the 600 metres.

Crafty Cruiser, $9, was a long head away third.