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Saturday evening’s Lexus Melbourne Cup (3200m) barrier draw shook up the betting market at Ladbrokes, with several favourites drawing poorly in the final 24 horse field.
For serious punters, betting on Australia’s greatest race began immediately following last year’s win by Rekindling, and with 11 international hopefuls lining up this year, the form looks tough to line up.
Below you can find the major movers and drifters you need to know about ahead of Tuesday’s feature:
Best Solution: $15 into $13
Melbourne Cup topweight and Caulfield Cup (2400m) winner Best Solution drew barrier six yesterday afternoon for Godolphin.
Gate six has seen five winners in the past, although you do have to rewind all the way back to Light Fingers’ win in 1965 for Bart Cummings to find the most recent one. Best Solution is hoping to become the 12th horse since Ethereal in 2001 to complete the Caulfield Cup/Melbourne Cup double.
Chestnut Coat: $54 Into $34
The only Japanese runner in the field was the biggest firmer overnight, starting at $54 once the final fields were announced, only to firm into $34 after trainer Yoshito Yahagi drew barrier four.
Luck happens to be on the side of the five-year old, after last year’s winner Rekindling jumped from gate four. The last Japanese import to win the race was Delta Blues in 2006, while Chestnut Coat will be looking to improve on a disappointing run on a wet track in the Caulfield Cup (2400m) last start.
Ace High: $61 out to $67
The odds have fluctuated with different bookies for David Payne’s four-year old, and after finishing fourth from last in the Caulfield Cup (2400m), it’s no wonder why the colt out of High Chaparral opened at long odds.
With Ladbrokes, you can have him for $67 after drawing the carpark on Saturday. Barrier 22 has seen five winners, most recently Shocking in 2009.
Auvray $101 Into $67
Richard Freedman’s French import has drawn No. 1 ahead of Tuesday’s race, the same gate Prince of Penzance won from in 2015.
The veteran eight-year old stayer hasn’t won a race since March, but looked extremely competitive in the Newcastle Cup (2300m) first-up earlier in September. He’s been given a short freshen-up after running sixth in the St Leger (2600m) at Randwick three weeks ago on a very wet track, and should suit the distance nicely.
Avilius: $13 into $12
For punters aboard Avilius during his quiet run in the Cox Plate (2040m) a fortnight ago at Moonee Valley, you’ll be happy to know he’s drawn one of the most successful gates ahead of the Melbourne Cup – barrier 11.
Six winners have won from there, most recently Tawrrific in 1989 for Lee Freedman.
Rostropovich: $21 into $26
Aidan O’Brien has found himself with three hopefuls in this year’s race, although he’ll probably feel the least confident about Rostropovich’s chances from barrier 21.
The last horse to win from there was Rogan Josh in 1999, although his form first-up in the Cox Plate (2040m) suggests he’s still a chance. The Irish import ran the fastest times between the 1800m-1000m mark.
Red Cardinal: $51 into $41
Last but not least, Darren Weir’s lone contender looks to cap off his Spring prep with his first ever Group 1 win in the Melbourne Cup. He’ll jump from barrier 5 on Tuesday, a gate that has recorded the most number of wins (8) in Cup history.
Green Moon (2012) and Fiorente (2013) were the last to do so in back-to-back years, making Weir’s seven-year old a nice roughie at these odds.
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