The countdown to the Sydney Spring Racing...
The major staying showdown on the Cox Plate Day card this Saturday in Melbourne is the 2016 Moonee Valley Gold Cup, betting tips and the updated odds on the clash found below.
Running as Race 8 at 4:10pm (AEDT), this season’s $300,000 Group 2 Antler Luggage Moonee Valley Gold Cup (2500m) field runs under capacity with just 10 hopefuls engaged to face off in the set weights plus penalties showdown.
Four of those are currently under double-figures in the latest Moonee Valley Gold Cup odds at Ladbrokes.com.au, markets led by one-time equal favourites Gallante and Excess Knowledge at $3.80 and $3.70 respectively.
Gallante is the big market mover representing Robert Hickmott (trainer) and Team Williams (owners) second-up after the six-year-old’s second to subsequent Caulfield Cup winner Jameka in the Group 3 Naturalism Stakes (2000m) on September 17.
He hasn’t raced in over a month, but will relish the extra meters on Saturday with a proven staying record highlighted by his Group 1 Sydney Cup (3200m) win in the autumn.
That was carrying only 51.5kg however and he is on 58kg this weekend, but that is a half-kilo drop from his Naturalism weight and his Sydney Cup winning hoop Kerrin McEvoy reunites acquaintances here.
Excess Knowledge has firmed into favouritism and jumps from barrier two with Vlad Duric replacing Mark Zahra in the saddle of the Gai Waterhouse & Adrian Bott-trained Monsun stallion.
The seven-year-old import hasn’t won a race since the Group 3 Lexus Stakes (2500m) over this distance last Victoria Derby Day.
While it has been a year between wins, he showed a nice return to form last time out when runner-up to Almandin at Flemington in the Group 3 The Bart Cummings (2500m) and is over the same meters in a smaller field here.
So will the co-favourites battle it out for the Moonee Valley Gold Cup title or is there an upset pending from a better priced fancy such as Who Shot Thebarman ($4.40) for Chris Waller or the in-form Authoritarian ($17) shooting for a third win on the trot?
#1 Gallante ($3.80)
Money is coming for the rival Excess Knowledge, but think the reigning Sydney Cup winner will have this field’s measure. Weight is manageable, barrier (4) is ideal and McEvoy knows how to ride him. Will be fitter second-up and his first-up form was franked with the Caulfield Cup results last weekend. Yet to win at the Valley, but the step-up to this distance will be ideal and this genuine stayer races best fresh so the team have done the right thing with him spacing the runs.
#3 Who Shot Thebarman ($4.40)
Chris Waller opted for this race over the Geelong Cup earlier in the week against the imports and it could prove the right move. He is a veteran eight-year-old, but can still test them at the staying distances. Two mile form in the Sydney and Melbourne Cups in recent years has been strong, but he also undefeated (2-2-0-0) at this distance. Needs to handle the Valley, but Sydney form has been stacking up and if he goes up closer to the speed than last start (seventh in The Metropolitan), he’s a winning chance.
#5 Authoritarian ($17)
Smoky shot adding value to the trifecta and exotic selections, this Lee & Anthony Freedman-trained gelding has winning form at the track / distance, which is a big plus. It was in a Benchmark 70 during the winter under 59.5kg and he looks well weighted (56kg) in this with a wide alley to stay out of trouble. Comes off back-to-back wins in easier class saluting in the wet over 2400m at Bendigo and then winning the Moe Cup (2050m) on October 13. Any rain and he’s an even better chance.
Get in on the Moonee Valley Cox Plate Day betting action at the right price now online at our No. 1 recommended bookmaker Ladbrokes.com.au.
2016 Moonee Valley Gold Cup Odds Update
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