The countdown is on until the 153rd edition of the ‘race that stops a nation’ with the Melbourne Cup 2013 to light up Flemington Racecourse as Race 7 at 3:00pm (AEST) on Tuesday November 5.
In anticipation of the iconic cup clash the official Melbourne Cup 2013 field of final acceptors along with the all-important Melbourne Cup barrier draw will be announced and conducted live this Saturday, November 2, from Flemington.
All the Melbourne Cup field announcement action is set to take place directly after the last Victoria Derby Day race has been run and won for the afternoon.
2013 Melbourne Cup final acceptances close at 4:30pm (AEST).
After that the Melbourne Cup field and barrier draw will be announced from 5:30pm (AEST).
There are officially still 47 stayers in the mix for the Melbourne Cup field following second acceptances, which has a capacity 24 starters.
The fight is on then for those sitting outside of the top 24 in the Melbourne Cup order of entry to make the field.
Event number 23 (Simenon) and 24 (Mr Moet) are not guaranteed a run if accepted as two horses offering a Melbourne Cup ballot exemption to the winner run on Derby Day with the $1 million Group 1 Mackinnon Stakes (2000m) and the $300,000 Group 3 Lexus Stakes (2500m).
There are a number of notable chances sweating on Derby Day results to go their way and a decent attrition rate at final acceptance stage then including last year’s fourth placegetter Kelinni (25th), the fellow Chris Waller-trained Moriarty (28th), Peter Moody’s Geelong Cup winner Ibicenco (26th) and Bart Cummings’ chance at an 88th Melbourne Cup runner Precedence (29th).
The latest Melbourne Cup betting markets meanwhile are led by the Luca Cumani-trained Mount Athos ($7.50) who has over taken Gai Waterhouse’s best chance of a maiden Melbourne Cup winner in Fiorente ($8).
Both horses contested last year’s Melbourne Cup finishing fifth and second respectively behind the Lloyd Williams-owned winner Green Moon.
History then is against both the top fancies this year as only one Melbourne Cup winner in the past 23 years, Brew in 2000, ran and lost the year before their triumph in the world’s richest handicap.
While Mount Athos has run in Australia before, they haven’t this season and only one overseas raider – Vintage Crop (1993) 20 years ago – won the Melbourne Cup without a lead-up down under.
The next six best in betting are all either internationally trained or imported including equal $12 shots Verema and Voleuse De Coeurs.
Alain de Royer Dupre’s Barathea mare Verema is looking to become the third French-trained Melbourne Cup winner joining Americain (2010) who Royer Dupre also trained and Dunaden (2011) 12 months later.
She was last seen winning the Group 2 Prix Kergorlay (3000m) back home in August, a race which has proven to be a decent Melbourne Cup guide in recent years.
Voleuse De Coeurs meanwhile is another five-year-old mare, this one formerly prepared in Ireland and now with Michael Moroney in Victoria.
Her last run was a win in the Irish St Leger (2800m) back on September 15 where she carried a hefty 61kg to a brave victory over Ahzeemah.
If accepted for the Melbourne Cup field at the current weights the daughter of Teofilo will carry only 54kg, a notable weight advantage.
Make sure you stay tuned to Races.com.au this Saturday to be one of the first in the country to view the official Melbourne Cup 2013 final field and barrier draw.
As soon as the final field is out our preferred online bookmaker Ladbrokes.com.au will be opening their juicy Melbourne Cup ‘Double The Odds’ markets so don’t miss out, sign-up with them today!