2018 Australian Cup First Acceptances Feature Hartnell

February 21, 2018

2018 Australian Cup First Acceptances Feature Hartnell

The Godolphin-raced Hartnell is one of the standout Australian Cup 2018 first acceptances taken for the Flemington Super Saturday showdown next month.


Godolphin’s first-up CF Orr Stakes winner Hartnell is a headline 2018 Australian Cup first acceptor for Super Saturday at Flemington. Photo: Ultimate Racing Photos.

First declarations for this season’s Group 1 $1.5 million Australian Cup (2000m) closed on Tuesday and Racing Victoria received 26 entries, cutting the number of weight-for-age hopefuls down from 53 at nomination stage.

The James Cummings-trained triple Group 1 winning import Hartnell is one of the top fancies for the March 10 feature after saluting first-up in the Group 1 Ladbrokes C.F. Orr Stakes (1400m).

A regular rival to the queen of the turf Winx over the seasons, Authorized seven-year-old Hartnell races again this weekend in the Group 2 $200,000 Peter Young Stakes (1800m) on Ladbrokes Blue Diamond Stakes Day.

The Peter Young Stakes has produced three of the past four Australian Cup winners and could again prove a key form line into the Group 1 again this Melbourne Autumn Racing Carnival.

Post-first acceptance Australian Cup odds at Ladbrokes.com.au list Hartnell as the $6.50 second favourite with the all-in markets led by Gailo Chop ($4.50).

Also engaged in the Peter Young Stakes field chasing the double with the Australian Cup next-up that was last achieved by Fiorente (2014), Gailo Chop is also a seven-year-old in fine form.

Prepared by master Victorian trainer Darren Weir, the Deportivo gelding is a dual Group 1 winner down under and enjoyed a Caulfield win on CF Orr Day in his campaign kick-off in the Group 3 TS Carlyon Cup (1600m).

Weir won the Australian Cup last year with Humidor (2017) who improved on a lead-up second in the Peter Young Stakes and, and Gailo Chop is his sole first acceptor this season.

Dominating the Australian Cup first acceptances numbers-wise with a bumper six entries is the new head trainer for the Lloyd Williams-owned Mt Macedon Lode, Liam Howley.

The best fancied of the Howley-trained contingent in the latest Australian Cup betting is The Taj Mahal who will stake his claims in the Peter Young Stakes.

Formerly prepared in Ireland, the progressive Galileo four-year-old races for the first time since improving on his Emirates Stakes fourth at Flemington to win last November’s Group 2 Sandown Classic (2400m) by three and a half-lengths.

Other noteworthy Howley-trained Williams’ runners heading towards the Australian Cup field this season include 2016 Melbourne Cup winner Almandin who was runner-up to The Taj Mahal in the Sandown Cup and last year’s Melbourne Cup quinella of Rekindling (1st) and Johannes Vermeer (2nd).

No mare has won the Australian Cup since the champion Makybe Diva (2005) who is the only female winner of the race since Dane Ripper (1998).

This year there are four mares in the Australian Cup first acceptances led by Single Gaze, Nick Olive’s Caulfield Cup runner-up impressive in her luckless second to Hartnell when resuming in the CF Orr Stakes.

Check out the full Australian Cup 2018 first acceptances below before visiting Ladbrokes.com.au for updated markets on the classic.

2018 Australian Cup First Acceptances

Flemington Racecourse – 10/03/2018

# Form (Last 10) Horse Sex Age Trainer Ballot Weight
1 22x12290x1 HARTNELL (GB) G 7 James Cummings 1 59kg
2 111x21402x ALMANDIN (GER) G 8 Liam Howley 2 59kg
3 0x1401241x REKINDLING (GB) H 4 Liam Howley 3 58.5kg
4 0x24x45x0x AMBITIOUS (JPN) H 6 Anthony Freedman 4 59kg
5 x0143150x1 GAILO CHOP (FR) G 7 Darren Weir 5 59kg
6 2x054420x2 SINGLE GAZE M 5 Nick Olive 6 57kg
7 45712x232x JOHANNES VERMEER (IRE) H 5 Liam Howley 7 59kg
8 6202720×24 PRIZED ICON H 4 Kris Lees 8 59kg
9 1x5x76200x VENTURA STORM (IRE) G 5 David & B Hayes & T Dabernig 9 59kg
10 111×220342 SUPPLY AND DEMAND G 5 Gai Waterhouse & Adrian Bott 10 59kg
11 446925041x THE TAJ MAHAL (IRE) H 4 Liam Howley 11 58.5kg
12 515x2114x3 LORD FANDANGO (GER) H 5 Archie Alexander 12 59kg
13 00x72586x6 ABBEY MARIE M 5 Michael Kent 13 57kg
14 6x515867x2 HARLEM (GB) G 6 David & B Hayes & T Dabernig 14 59kg
15 23x11432x8 SULLY (NZ) G 3 Trent Busuttin & Natalie Young 15 54.5kg
16 6822063×34 WYNDSPELLE (NZ) H 4 Michael Kent 16 59kg
17 3059x1153x WHEAL LEISURE M 4 Archie Alexander 17 57kg
18 2x412153x HOMESMAN (USA) G 4 Liam Howley 18 58.5kg
19 1x1661x5 LEVENDI C 3 Peter Gelagotis 19 54.5kg
20 x090x56111 SINGING (FR) H 8 Kris Lees 20 59kg
21 9x12x1397x ALOFT (IRE) G 6 Liam Howley 21 59kg
22 3x212135x4 MAIN STAGE (NZ) G 3 Trent Busuttin & Natalie Young 22 54.5kg
23 4339332215 JACQUINOT BAY G 10 David & B Hayes & T Dabernig 23 59kg
24 23328×1342 DEVISE (NZ) M 4 Shaune Ritchie 24 57kg
25 204x77x52x SPIRITJIM (FR) H 8 David & B Hayes & T Dabernig 25 59kg
26 49x431x162 VALIANT SPIRIT G 3 Daniel Williams 26 54.5kg

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