The Ben, Will & JD Hayes-trained Cox...
Irish import Magic Circle has been a popular Melbourne Cup play ever since he won the Chester Cup (3749m) earlier in May.
Ian Williams’ seven-year old gelding had firmed from $51 into $19 midway through September, and continued to fluctuate around the $10 mark with Ladbrokes prior to drawing gate 17 in Saturday’s barrier draw.
For many punters, the double-digit gate might look a little concerning, but for Williams, the renowned British trainer still thinks his proven stayer is every chance from out wide.
“It’s not a bad draw for us, he’s not a horse that’s got a burst of speed early on, Magic Circle needs room to finish, not to race early” Williams told Racing.com at Flemington on Saturday.
Despite having ridden just two winners in his last 50 rides, jockey Corey Brown will receive the ride on the promising international raider on Tuesday.
“So as long as Corey (Brown) can get out and get a nice enough position, he’s always going to have to finish wide up that straight. I wasn’t overly concerned about the 17 draw I must say” Williams went on to say.
Magic Circle will jump alongside Sound Check and Chris Waller’s hopeful Finche in ‘the race that stops the nation’. Brown will carry 56kg into the race, and again, Williams remained optimistic when asked about the handicap.
“From what I understand from the handicapper, there wasn’t that real champion at the top this year, that’s a bit of an understatement because all the horses that run this race is a champion, but there wasn’t that real Group 1 horse at the top.
“But their weights are just a little bit higher for everything. We thought we’d have 54kg’s and we’re a kilo and a half higher, but everybody is appropriately so it is what it is”
Magic Circle has drifted slightly out to $9.50 in Melbourne Cup betting.
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