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Gai Waterhouse may be in with a lightweight Melbourne Cup winning hope in Cismontane but Australia’s leading lady of racing is tipping the Lloyd Williams-owned Almandin to go back-to-back in the ‘Race That Stops A Nation’ this afternoon.
Waterhouse revealed her insider 2017 Melbourne Cup tips to The Daily Telegraph, in which she said it was hard to bet against the defending champion Almandin.
“Lloyd’s horse, Almandin, holds the key,” she said.
“Almandin is the class stayer of the race. He is well weighted for a horse that won the Melbourne Cup last year. He is the one we all have to beat.”
Prepared by Macedon Lodge head trainer Robert Hickmott, who also prepared Green Moon (2012) for a Melbourne Cup win five years ago, Almandin won at 10/1 odds in the race 12 months ago.
This season the experienced stayer ran fourth in his final lead-up as the beaten favourite in the Group 3 The Bart Cummings (2500m), the event in won last spring before his Melbourne Cup victory.
The import, one of six in the mix for five-time Melbourne Cup winning owner Williams, also rises 4.5kg to 56.5kg in the weights making for a tough task.
Controversial Italian jockey Frankie Dettori rides in his 17th Melbourne Cup field today chasing his maiden win after two seconds, including on Max Dynamite in 2015.
Melbourne Cup history is against Almandin as last year’s Melbourne Cup winner.
Since the race was first run and won in 1861 there have been only four multiple Melbourne Cup winners, Makybe Diva (2003-05) the last and to date only three-time champion.
Before her it was Think Big (1974-75) and since then, 18 Melbourne Cup winners returned the following year.
Makybe Diva is not only the only one to succeed, but the only one to run in the top three, which works against 2017 Melbourne Cup Trifecta Tips that include Almandin.
Waterhouse however isn’t deterred and believes Almandin, who has eased out from $7 to $9 in the latest Melbourne Cup odds at Ladbrokes.com.au, is the horse to beat.
Williams also goes into the race with some confidence, tipping the horse to run a great race.
“He’s a European horse and he needs a European jockey like Frankie Dettori, who is at the peak of his powers,” he said.
“I’d be very surprised if he didn’t run a great race.”
Waterhouse’s Melbourne Cup starter, last Saturday’s Lexus Stakes winning lightweight, Cismontane is a big drifter in Melbourne Cup betting out from $34 to $51.
“It is a dream come true getting this horse into the Cup,” Waterhouse said.
“Realistically, he is probably an outsider but it is good for my co-trainer, Adrian [Bott], and I to have him in the race.
“I know it was a tough win on Saturday but he took my breath away how well he looked the next day.
“He came through that race remarkably well and I think he will beat more home than beats him home.”
To check out the latest odds for the famous Flemington Race 7 today and lock in your Melbourne Cup 2017 tips head to Ladbrokes.com.au now.
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