Two of the country’s leading jockeys are in serious danger of missing out on a ride in the iconic Melbourne Cup 2011 next Tuesday with Craig Williams and Nash Rawiller both copping careless riding suspensions at Wednesday’s Bendigo Cup meeting.
In-form, hoop-of-the-moment Williams is hoping to become the first jockey in Australian racing history to secure the Melbourne Spring Carnival Triple Crown grand slam in the same season having already won the Caulfield Cup with smart South Australian mare Southern Speed and the Cox Plate with the Greg Eurell-trained Pinker Pinker.
In the middle of those two winning rides last week was Williams’ Geelong Cup success with French-trained raider Dunaden, the horse he is at this stage engaged to ride in the $6.2 million Group 1 Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington on November first.
Dunaden is second favourite in the Luxbet Melbourne Cup odds at a quote of $7.50 behind fellow French galloper and defending champ Americain at $4.
2012 Melbourne Cup Odds
Futures all-in betting showing top 24 horses.
Williams must win his appeal against his careless riding charge, the hearing expected to be held on Monday just one day before the 2011 Melbourne Cup, if he is to gain a ride in the ‘race that stops a nation’.
Sydney-based Rawiller, who is booked to partner with the Mick Kent’s American import Unusual Suspect for the Melbourne Cup, is in the same predicament as Williams and both jockeys have indicated that they would be appealing the charges.
Rawiller and Williams are both free for their engagements at Victoria Derby Day this Saturday.
Williams has seven Derby Day rides highlighted by Southern Speed’s return in the $1 million Group 1 Mackinnon Stakes (2000m).
Rawiller has five prized rides at the meeting including aboard the Gai Waterhouse-trained More Joyous in the $500,000 Group 1 Myer Classic (1600m) and on Niagara in the day’s marquee event, the $1.5 million Group 1 Victoria Derby (2500m).
Meanwhile, Hollywood Cup winner Unusual Suspect, last seen running a credible sixth in the Caulfield Cup, is rated a $26 chance in the latest Melbourne Cup betting markets at Luxbet.
Rawiller was admittedly upset over facing an eight-meeting ban.
“It is all about having an opportunity to ride in the Melbourne Cup, let along winning one and the unfortunate thing about it is that I was on a real chance this year and there is nothing more heartbreaking than having something like this happen,” Rawiller said.
Melbourne Cup jockey changes often have a dramatic impact on the odds being offered on the runners, so make sure you stay tuned to Races.com.au for developments.
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