The airborne Kelly Schweida-trained...
An early guide to Melbourne Cup betting takes place at Flemington Racecourse on Saturday with a host of smart stayers doing battle in the 2017 The Bart Cummings, tips and the updated odds for which are detailed below.
Set to run as Flemington Race 7, the same as the world-esteemed two mile classic on the first Tuesday of November, this season’s Group 3 $300,000 The Bart Cummings (2500m) offers a ballot exemption to the winner for the Group 1 $6 million Melbourne Cup (3200m).
There are a dozen remaining Melbourne Cup hopefuls in the mix after the early withdrawal of Super Haze (3) and the updated The Bart Cummings odds at Ladbrokes.com.au are dominated by the defending champion Almandin ($2).
The Lloyd Williams-raced import is approaching odds-on territory in The Bart Cummings betting for Saturday to go back-to-back in the race he won last spring, before going on later to also take out the Melbourne Cup in 2016.
Almandin is out to confirm his futures favouritism in Melbourne Cup odds again this season and has been brilliant this time in, including his second-up Flemington win on September 16 in the Listed JRA Trophy (2500m).
That form line could be the one to follow into Saturday’s race and Almandin, a now eight-year-old, gives the weight away again with the 60kg top kilos.
Second past the post in the JRA Trophy was Crocodile Rock, also prepared by Robert Hickmott for the Williams’ stable, and he is at $9 to run the same quinella in The Bart Cummings this weekend.
The other single-figure fancies are Lindsay Park’s impressive Naturalism Stakes winner Harlem ($4) who saluted by over three lengths at 2000m that run and Darren Weir’s classy staying mare Amelie’s Star ($7.50) who will eat-up this distance.
So will Almandin salute for the punters and head The Bart Cummings results once more or is there value to be had further down the markets?
#1 Almandin ($2)
He is firming fast, but this outstanding long-distance specialist is too good to ignore. Did The Bart Cummings – Melbourne Cup double last year and is tipped to do so again this spring. Carries 60kg top weight, but that’s actually a kilo less than he dominated the JRA Trophy (winning by 2.75L) with last start. Three-from-four over Flemington and unbeaten not only over this distance (2-2-0-0) but in all his starts over 2200m and over. Third-up and still improving.
#4 Amelie’s Star ($7)
Lots to like about Weir’s six-year-old daughter of Testa Rossa who is after her first win since the Group 2 Queen Of The South over the mile at Morphettville back in May. Doomben Cup fourth after that was close and she comes off the fourth to Naturalism in the Naturalism Stakes. She will be better over further here and flying back from 56kg to 54.5kg with a good draw to boot. Easily accounted for stablemate Big Duke (10th) in the Naturalism who franked the form with the close second in last Saturday’s Group 1 The Metropolitan (2400m).
#9 Crocodile Rock ($9)
Consistent stablemate of the favourite, this imported son of Galileo is only lightly-raced with six of his eight career starts occurring down under. He’s yet to finish worse than third in Australia including the second in the JRA Trophy, the form of which can stack-up on Saturday in the rematch. Fourth-up reaching top fitness and out to prove he can match it with Almandin again.
Back our The Bart Cummings 2017 tips and check out the latest Melbourne Cup futures odds online today through Ladbrokes.com.au.
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