The countdown to the Sydney Spring Racing...
The official Caulfield Cup 2017 barrier draw has been completed with Aidan O’Brien’s Irish raider Johannes Vermeer sure to retain favouritism after drawing barrier two.
It is a 17 horse field for the Group 1 $3 million BMW Caulfield Cup (2400m) on Saturday after news this morning that the Darren Weir-trained Japanese import Admire Deus was fighting for his life after breaking down at track work.
Updated Caulfield Cup odds at Ladbrokes.com.au had international visitor Johannes Vermeer as the one to beat following the galloper’s excellent second last Saturday behind Gailo Chop in the Group 1 Ladbrokes Stakes (2000m).
Johannes Vermeer came up with gate two in the Caulfield Cup barrier draw, which last produced a winner in the mile and a half classic back in 2006 with the David Hayes-trained Tawqeet.
Jockey Ben Melham comes aboard five-year-old Galileo stallion Johannes Vermeer, the horse into the Caulfield Cup with just 54.5kg.
Last year’s winning Caulfield Cup barrier that Jamkea won from was barrier 11 (of 16), drawn this weekend by the Hawkes Racing-trained Inference carrying only 53.5kg in the form of Dwayne Dunn.
Co-trainer and Hall of Famer John Hawkes won the race in 2005 with Railings, while Dunn rode the aforementioned Tawqeet (2006) to victory.
Back-to-back Caulfield Cup winners haven’t saluted from the same barrier since Taufan’s Melody (1998) and Sky Heights (1990) both jumped from gate nine for their respective victories in the mile and a half classic.
The most successful Caulfield Cup barrier (since 1983) producing five winners is gate nine drawn this year by the 50kg light weight in the mix Lord Fandango.
Englishman Archie Alexander is now based at Ballarat and his galloper Lord Fandango earned a spot in the Caulfield Cup field after taking out last Saturday’s Group 2 Ladbrokes Herbert Power Stakes (2400m) at the track / distance.
Master O’Reilly (2007) was the last horse to complete the Herbert Power Stakes – Caulfield Cup double that Lord Of England stallion Lord Fandango pays around $21 to emulate this spring.
Weir may have lost Admire Deus from the Caulfield Cup field in 2017, but the former Melbourne Cup winning trainer still has two runners with Humidor and Amelie’s Star drawn in barriers seven and 13 respectively.
Humidor carries the 56kg top weight, the Teofilo five-year-old coming off a third to Winx in the Group 1 Turnbull Stakes (2000m) on October 7, a race that produced last year’s champion Jameka (2nd in 2016).
Amelie’s Star meanwhile has just 51kg on her back this weekend, Craig Williams picking up the mount chasing his third Caulfield Cup victory after his earlier winning rides aboard Southern Speed (2011) and Dunaden (2012).
The in-form Testa Rossa mare was last seen winning Flemington’s Group 3 The Bart Cummings (2500m) by two lengths and if successful from gate 13, will be the first Caulfield Cup winner from that barrier since Viewed (2009).
Since Viewed a further four Caulfield Cup winners saluted from double digit barriers.
The other single-figure hopeful in the mix is Bonneval ($6.50) who also drew wide with barrier 14 for jockey Kerrin McEvoy to overcome.
The Murray Baker & Andrew Forsman-trained Makfi mare is a three-time Group 1 winner including her NZ Oaks – ATC Oaks double over the Caulfield Cup distance last season.
She is down to 52.5kg after she had 56kg on her back last Saturday running sixth as the beaten favourite in the Ladbrokes Stakes.
Other key Caulfield Cup horses and their barriers on the weekend include Bonneval’s ATC Derby winning stablemate Jon Snow (barrier 6) coming off a Ladbrokes Stakes third, William Mullins’ veteran nine-year-old Irish raider Wicklow Brave (barrier 16) out to be the oldest Caulfield Cup winner in history, the rails-drawn Harlem (barrier 1) and Hugh Bowman’s mount Marmelo (barrier 10) last seen winning the Group 2 Prix Kergorlay (3000m) in France on August 20.
See below for the official Caulfield Cup 2017 Field, Barriers & Odds updated and open now at Ladbrokes.com.au.
2017 Caulfield Cup Field, Barriers & Odds
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