Punters are starting to shy away from the odds on defending Melbourne Cup champion Americain in the early markets for this year’s famous Flemington feature on the first of November after the Alain De Royer Dupre-trained galloper suffered a nasty loss in France overnight.
After returning to form with a solid win in the Listed Prix de Reux (2514m) at the start of the month, Dynaformer six-year-old Americain was the top fancy at Luxbet to win his second consecutive Group 2 Prix Kergorlay (3016m) at Deauville.
On Sunday, however, Americain failed to beat home all but three rivals when finishing 10th, six lengths away from the winner, British raider Jukebox Jury.
Jukebox Jury had three lengths to spar over Kasbah Bliss while the Luca Cumani-trained Manighar, also nominated for the Melbourne Cup 2011, was awarded third in a photo-finish over Brigantin.
While the all-the-way win by the Mark Johnston-trained Jukebox Jury has their connections eyeing off success in the iconic Irish St Leger next, those part of the Americain camp have been left in a state of uncertainly as the 2011 Melbourne Cup approaches.
Until Sunday Americain had been one of the best-backed horsed in the early markets for the $6 million Group 1 Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Luxbet.
After stumbling just after the jump in the Prix Kergorlay, Americain failed to make up ground and was well-beaten, questioning their ability to join the exclusive list of dual Melbourne Cup winners later in the year.
Trainer Royer-Dupre, however, warned punters not to completely remove Americain from their Melbourne Cup betting calculations based on the run.
“He ground was too fast for him and he nearly fell on his knees coming out of the stalls and had no action afterwards,” he said.
“He couldn’t relax and they quickened brutally in the straight.
“You mustn’t write him off as he was unfavoured by the race from start to finish and he will now go into quarantine.”
Meanwhile rival trainer Cumani was happy with the third place finish by the fellow Melbourne Cup-bound Manighar.
“It was a good run, it was set up for the winner and his (Manighar’s) target will be the Melbourne Cup,” Cumani said.
No stranger to the Melbourne Spring Carnival down under, Linamix gelding Manighar finished second in last year’s Prix Kergorlay before travelling to Australia to run fifth in the Caulfield Cup, seventh in the Melbourne Cup and then third in the Sandown Classic.
This year they are rated a $51 outsider in the Melbourne Cup 2011 odds.
To view all the Melbourne Spring Carnival feature race markets and betting options, visit Australia’s leading online bookmaker Luxbet today.