Manighar is a French hopeful with some experience racing the longer events, but will Manighar win the 2010 Melbourne Cup? We’ll start by taking a look at everything that suggests he can.
Let’s start with Manighar’s distance experience. He has routinely run 2400 metres to events of just over 3200 metres. Of these, his most impressive win has been in the 3000 metre Group 2 Prix Chaudenay. In this race he carried 58kg compared to 54kg in his Melbourne Cup run, so the light weight should be a bit of an advantage for him.
Next, Manighar’s run in the Caulfield Cup, while not ideal, wasn’t as big a flop as the other foreign horses. Placing fifth was no easy task on the heavy track, and should have been good preparation.
Manighar’s jockey is Damien Oliver, and that can hardly be considered anything other than an advantage in the Melbourne Cup. His two wins are a few years behind him, but how frequently can you expect a jockey to win the Cup? One wins is great and anything more hints at a jockey who knows the kind of ride that race requires.
Now for the points against Manighar’s Melbourne Cup run.
Not only has Manighar lost to Descarado, Harris Tweed and Monaco Consul in Australia, he has also lost to Americain and Illustrious Blue overseas. That puts him behind almost a fifth of the field to begin with – not a good sign, to be sure.
Manighar’s successful distance experience is really just up to 3000 metres as well, as his only runs beyond that were a finish of fifth from seven in the 3271 metre LISTED Coral Marathon and a third place 3100 metre Group 1 Prix Royal Oak finish.
A barrier 20 start really is the final nail in the coffin for Manighar’s winning chances. This barrier only produces a winner once in a blue moon, and it would take a better horse to do it.
All in all, Manighar does not look set to win, though few would deny he has a chance to place if things go his way and some of the Aussie contenders starting failing as they approach the two miles.
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