HERE’S a news flash – the Melbourne Cup has been taken over by the rest of the world!
That’s the news flash you could almost expect to hear if a non-racing person had a look at the field for tomorrow’s Group 1 $6 million Melbourne Cup (3200m).
I’ll give you some alarming statistics about this year’s Melbourne Cup field.
There are 23 runners following the scratching yesterday of Who Shot Thebarman. Of those 23 starters 12 are international runners who have come here in the past four to six weeks to contest our great race.
Another nine are ‘former’ imports or from New Zealand.
So that leaves two of the 23 who were bred in Australia. Remarkably those two – Boom Time and Single Gaze – ran first and second in the recent Group 1 $3 million Caulfield Cup (2400m).
Of the 12 international runners starting in the race, eight are having their first start in Australia making life for us punters a little more difficult.
There’s a message here, a real message and what the right response is I do not know.
Ever since the Victoria Racing Club deliberately started internationalising the Melbourne Cup more than 20 years ago, the influence of overseas horses has increased.
Now it has got to record proportions with the main problem for local owners, breeders and trainers simply getting a start in the race – our race!
Anyway, our task is to try and sort the race out, which is just about impossible given the number of form-lines we can’t rate and the number of horses we haven’t seen.
From what we have seen the international horses MARMELO, JOHANNES VERMEER and WALL OF FIRE all look to have serious winning chances.
CROWNBET’S form men have marked them $8.50, $10 and $13 respectively – all at the top of the market.
If there has ever been a harder and more open race then I haven’t seen it. At $8.50 MARMELO is the favourite!
I truly struggle to find a horse who couldn’t win the race. Certainly all of the international runners could win without surprising.
That leaves horses like HARTNELL ($26) and last year’s winner ALMANDIN ($9.00) both winning chances as they are both outstanding gallopers.
Then there’s HUMIDOR ($13), the horse who almost beat the mighty Winx in the Cox Plate and his Kiwi breeding is as stout as you can find. He can win the race.
Caulfield Cup winner BOOM TIME is marked $26, while St Leger winner and Metropolitan runner-up BIG DUKE is well drawn and in form and is quoted at just $21. So they can win too!
That just leaves a few more including Caulfield Cup runner-up SINGLE GAZE, who may be $41 but on that run alone has a chance, as too does AMELIE’S STAR ($17), who has a great record at staying trips.
Bar for her rider deciding to go forward in the Caulfield Cup her record at longer trips is fabulous – so we agree she can win.
And the last one into the field was Saturday’s all-the-way Lexus winner CISMONTAINE, who is quoted at $51 but is tough and in-form.
My advice to you all is to back whatever you like – whether it be a nice name, a familiar jockey, pretty colours or good form – whatever you want.
I’m going to back a few in the race and there’s no rule against that – principally MARMELO and WALL OF FIRE, with a sneak dollar or two on HUMIDOR.
Whatever you back – Good luck!
Review: Read our CrownBet.com.au bookmaker Review via this link!