The weights for the 2010 Melbourne Cup will be announced this Wednesday, September 1, in anticipation of the 150th edition of the great handicap event to be held at Flemington on Tuesday November 2.
Racing Victoria’s chief handicapper Greg Carpenter has the daunting task of allocating the weights to the 200 plus Melbourne Cup hopefuls, with 39 Group 1 winners among the entries to be handicapped.
One horse expected to top the weights is Lloyd Williams’ Alandi.
Six-year-old Alandi was formerly raced in Europe and took out last year’s Group 1 Irish St Leger (2800m), the proven stayer also stepping up to take out the Group 1 Prix du Cadran over 4000m in France.
Since being acquired by prominent racehorse owner Williams, Alandi has been trained by Robert Hickmott and has had just one start at Flemington when finishing second last in the Straight Six over 1200m.
Alandi will resume racing this Saturday in the Group 2 Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m).
Cavalryman and Mastery, both trained by Saeed Bin Suroor, are also expected to feature at the top end of the handicaps.
Mastery is already a Group 1 winner having taken out the English St Leger, while Cavalryman placed a gallant third to Sea The Stars in the Group 1 Prix de L’Arc de Triomphe last year.
Another horse attracting lots of attention leading up to the weight allocations for the Cup is Rite Of Passage.
Rite Of Passage is trained by two-time Melbourne Cup winning mentor Dermot Weld, who is the only European trainer to have prepared a Melbourne Cup winner.
Having won seven of their 10 career starts including the Group 1 Ascot Gold Cup (4000m) back in June, Rite Of Passage presents a handicapper’s nightmare as only three of their races have been in ‘professional company’.
Rite Of Passage is currently a $31 chance in the Melbourne Cup markets at Ladbrokes.com.au, while Alandi is higher up at $21.
All Melbourne Cup nominations will be weighted including Japan’s Tenno Sho winner and second placegetter Jaguar Mail and Meiner Kitz, even though they have since been announced as non-runners by their connections.
Just two triple Group 1 winners are among the 2010 Melbourne Cup nominations, 2007 Cup champion Efficient and Metal Bender.
Efficient, however, is likely to miss the Melbourne Cup again this year after an ongoing tendon injury as will the Luca Cumani-trained Purple Moon who finished second to Efficient in the 2007 Melbourne Cup.
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