With the final acceptances for the Melbourne Cup 2015 field closing at 4:30pm (AEST) this afternoon, below is the likely 24-horse line-up in Flemington Race 7 next Tuesday.
The $6.2 million Group 1 Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m) is known as the ‘race that stops a nation’ and has a capacity 24-starter field with no emergencies.
Which stayers from locally and aboard are facing off in the world’s richest handicap is all but confirmed ahead of the official Melbourne Cup field and barrier draw released live from Flemington Racecourse by the VRC this afternoon.
To don the number one saddlecloth and carrying the 58kg top weight will be the Sir Michael Stoute-trained raider Snow Sky, the UK visitor having debuted down under with the same weight for a fifth in the Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m).
The last Melbourne Cup winner to come off a Caulfield Cup run straight into the two mile classic was Delta Blues (3rd in 2006) who took out the famous Flemington feature as a 16/1 shot for Japan.
A Japanese-trained horse hasn’t won again since, but this year the Yoshitada Munakata-trained Fame Game carrying 57kg is leading the Melbourne Cup odds at Ladbrokes.com.au to get the job done.
The Heart’s Cry stallion has winning form up to 3400m back home and was runner-up to champion Japanese stayer Gold Ship two back in the Group 1 Tenno Sho (3200m) over the two miles.
Like Snow Sky he ran first-up down under in the Caulfield Cup and ran sixth to Mongolian Khan, since ruled out of the Melbourne Cup field due to a bout of colic, with improvement expected when he goes out over more distance.
Japan are set to have two hopefuls in the classic with Fame Game joined by Hokko Brave (55.5kg), a veteran eight-year-old by Australian racing standards who ran 10th in the Caulfield Cup, who is rated around $21 in betting.
There a host of other internationals in the Melbourne Cup field again in 2015 including the Michael Bell-trained Big Orange, William Mullins’ Irish visitor Max Dynamite, the Saeed Bin Suroor-trained Sky Hunter and 53.5kg lightweight hope Quest For More prepared by Roger Charlton.
Two English horseman are also in with two hopes a piece with Ed Dunlop and Aidan O’Brien.
Dunlop has prepared Red Cadeaux for four straight Melbourne Cup bids for a trio of second place finishes including behind Protectionist 12 months ago, and brings the now 10-year-old back to Oz for his fifth Spring bid with 55kg next Tuesday.
Stablemate Trip To Paris is one of the best fancied in the Melbourne Cup odds sitting second in the markets behind Fame Game after a brave second in the Caulfield Cup.
O’Brien has saddled up five previous Melbourne Cup starters for just the one third and could have Kingfisher and Bondi Beach in the field this season carrying 53kg and 52.5kg respectively.
After taking out his first ‘Major’ with Winx in the Cox Plate, Sydney’s Chris Waller has current third pick for the Melbourne Cup in Preferment who will drop down to 53.5kg from the 57.5kg he carried to ninth behind his stablemate in the Cox Plate.
See below for the likely 24 Melbourne Cup 2015 starters then head to Ladbrokes.com.au who have an incredible ‘The Melbourne Cup Prize Draw’ running for punters that place ANY Melbourne Cup bet.
There is a main prize of a Ford XLT Ute up for grabs plus an Aquamaster boat and Honda CFR250L Bike for second and third, and the best thing is that for every unique bet you place you get another entry.
So while you can’t place two bets on Preferment for two entries, you can place a WIN bet on Preferment for one entry then add Preferment in a Melbourne Cup quinella for another entry – but only at Ladbrokes.com.au!
Likely 2015 Melbourne Cup Field
Flemington Race 7 – 03/11/2015
|#||Form (Last 10)||Horse||Sex||Age||Trainer||Weight||Hcp. Rating|
|1||23x7x116x5||SNOW SKY (GB)||H||5||Sir Michael Stoute||58kg||115|
|2||x32135x612||CRITERION (NZ)||H||5||David Hayes & Tom Dabernig||57.5kg||116|
|3||x61x01x2x6||FAME GAME (JPN)||H||6||Yoshitada Munakata||57kg||113|
|4||1016x7x923||OUR IVANHOWE (GER)||H||6||Lee & Anthony Freedman||56kg||112|
|5||7x2114x465||HARTNELL (GB)||G||5||John O’Shea||55.5kg||112|
|6||38x05x36x0||HOKKO BRAVE (JPN)||H||8||Yasutoshi Matsunaga||55.5kg||110|
|7||115x47117x||BIG ORANGE (GB)||G||5||Michael Bell||55.5kg||110|
|8||x411121352||TRIP TO PARIS (IRE)||G||5||Ed Dunlop||55kg||109|
|9||726x52073x||RED CADEAUX (GB)||G||10||Ed Dunlop||55kg||109|
|10||1244F7221x||MAX DYNAMITE (FR)||G||6||William Mullins||55kg||109|
|11||x5442x7587||WHO SHOT THEBARMAN (NZ)||G||7||Chris Waller||54.5kg||109|
|12||60x8x15541||THE OFFER (IRE)||G||7||Gai Waterhouse||54kg||108|
|13||x0628x0119||PREFERMENT (NZ)||H||4||Chris Waller||53.5kg||113|
|14||x46xD1x1x2||SKY HUNTER (GB)||G||6||Saeed Bin Suroor||54kg||108|
|15||89431×0750||GRAND MARSHAL (GB)||G||6||Chris Waller||53.5kg||106|
|16||201x2112x0||QUEST FOR MORE (IRE)||G||6||Roger Charlton||53.5kg||107|
|17||266x412x38||KINGFISHER (IRE)||H||5||Aidan O’Brien||53kg||106|
|18||5416×50671||ALMOONQITH (USA)||H||6||David Hayes & Tom Dabernig||53kg (inc. 1.0kg penalty)||105|
|19||2123×85582||PRINCE OF PENZANCE (NZ)||G||6||Darren Weir||53kg||105|
|20||12122||BONDI BEACH (IRE)||H||4||Aidan O’Brien||52.5kg||112|
|22||x3x0x12261||THE UNITED STATES (IRE)||H||6||Robert Hickmott||52.5kg (inc. 2.5kg penalty)||104|
|23||x1141x9804||GUST OF WIND (NZ)||M||4||John Sargent||51kg||104|
|24||15x11x5722||EXCESS KNOWLEDGE (GB)||H||6||Gai Waterhouse||51kg||101|