The action of the Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival steps up this weekend with the running of the Caulfield Cup 2016, betting tips and the latest odds on the mile and a half classic found below.
Heading a bumper 10-race program as Caulfield Race 8 at 4:30pm (AEDT), this year’s $3 million Group 1 BMW Caulfield Cup (2400m) is still set to run at its capacity 18-starter field for the eighth year on the trot despite two early scratchings.
Graeme Sanders’ Kiwi mare Fanatic (spider bite) and Big Memory (swollen hock) are officially out of the 2016 Caulfield Cup field, paving the way for the two emergency runners De Little Engine and Vengeur Masque to make the line-up.
There’s been little movement in the top-half of the Caulfield Cup betting markets with the Ciaron Maher-trained Myboycharlie mare Jameka still favourite to make history.
She is easing, out from $3.20 to $3.70, but her price still has her out to become the shortest-priced winning Caulfield Cup mare since Leilani ($3.25 in 1974).
That’s an imposing stat, as is the fact no Victorian Oaks winning filly has come back as a mare to win the Caulfield Cup since the latter was first run back in 1879.
Only three of her rivals are also under $10 for the win looking to be just the second single-figure hope in the past five years to win.
There’s been money for Scottish ($8 into $7.50), who is now the shortest-priced of the international raiders.
He is raced by the international powerhouse Godolphin and trained by the UK’s Charlie Appleby, Scottish jumping from the successful gate seven draw with Kerrin McEvoy riding.
Equal in the markets is the Darren Weir-trained Real Love ($7.50), a former Perth Cup winning mare coming off the JRA Cup win at Moonee Valley.
History is against her for a successful Caulfield Cup result coming off that run, but she is right down in weight with just 52.5kg here and has dual Caulfield Cup winning jockey Craig Williams in the saddle.
Rounding out the single-figure fancies at $9.50 is the German raider Articus whose formline is hard to follow.
He is raced and trained by the same connections as the 2014 Melbourne Cup winner Protectionist and this weekend for his Australia race debut the Andreas Wohler-trained stallion has Victorian hoop Zac Purton helping him around the Caulfield track.
So do the bookies have the order of the Caulfield Cup betting markets right or should you be looking for value in a longer-priced stayer such as the Aidan O’Brien-trained Irish galloper Sir Isaac Newton ($12), the Lee & Anthony Freedman-trained import Exospheric ($13) to be ridden by four-time Caulfield Cup winning hoop Damien Oliver or even his stablemate Our Ivanhowe ($26) who ran third in last year’s trifecta?
#2 Our Ivanhowe ($26)
Suckers for a value punt, loving the price on this Team Freedman-trained German import. Twelve months ago the son of Soldier Hollow ran third to Mongolian Khan (2015) in the Caulfield Cup and he’s back to go two better. History shows that’s a pretty tough task, but he’s subsequently won a Group 1 in Brisbane and only goes up a half-kilo to 56.5kg. He gives kilos away, true, but recent stats show that most of the Caulfield Cup winners in the past decade carried at least 55kg to victory so being higher up the weights is actually a statistical advantage. Barrier six produced last year’s champ, the Turnbull Stakes eighth suggests he still has upside, is a three-time winner over the distance and think he has what it takes to score the biggest upset since All The Good ($40 in 2008).
#11 Jameka ($3.70)
The easing price on Maher’s mare make her a more and more attractive bet. Her light weight, return to her pet Caulfield track and the Turnbull Stakes second are all big ticks. She was well beaten by Harntell in the lead-up run, but she put a big margin on the rest of the field in the perfect Caulfield Cup preparation. History shows the Crown Oaks form is nasty in the Caulfield Cup, but she is a classy type with improvement to come and is the right age to get it done. Nicholas Hall stays on and chases his second win, and Maher is confident.
#12 Real Love ($7.50)
Weir took out the Melbourne Cup last year at the huge price and this season Real Love is his only shot at a Caulfield Cup victory to add to the collection. She’s been doing plenty right since being sent over from WA and is on the same weight as Jameka here, adding to her appeal. Williams rides her, barrier 10 gives them different opportunities in the run and while the JRA Cup formline isn’t the right one to follow into the race, it doesn’t stop her being a good pick for exotics.