What the Cup chances did: Saturday 7th October 2017

What the Cup chances did: Saturday 7th October 2017

It was a genuine surprise to see Almandin beaten – he looked imperious before this. While we might want to say how exciting that is for an open Cup race, take note – he was flat, but ridden quiet. There’s a bigger aim in mind, clearly. More on that below.

Amelie’s Star had been putting the writing on the wall though, won her way into the Melbourne Cup, and it’s nice to have another mare in good form.

Randwick was a complete miss – three runners in a 2000m race just isn’t good enough. But I’ll save a sentence for Alward who won for trainer Chris Waller – he’s going well but needs to win a race like the Lexus Handicap to get into the Cup.

And read more about poor Gingernuts here.


Flemington

Group 1 Turnbull Stakes (2000m)

With everything so far behind Winx it’s hard to really figure out how they went behind her, but safe to say most were expecting Humidor at least to be better than what he was.

What the jockeys said:

Winx – 1st

Ok Winx is not in the Melbourne Cup field, but wow! She’s just so special. Superb.

Ventura Storm – 2nd

Gotta be happy with that – he’s still looking for further but this was a good effort. They’re getting the miles into his legs nicely and he’s proving himself as he goes on.

Humidor – 3rd

Nowhere near Winx, but that’s not exactly the right place to be looking for a real comparison. But still, he was fancied as some chance of beating her over distance but that wasn’t the case and many thought he disappointed. While he was a little flat I’d still be confident with him given that wasn’t his grand final.

Trainer Darren Weir said they might fiddle with his gear a little so who knows what we’ll see next – keep an eye on it!

Assign – 4th
Sir Isaac Newton – 5th

Not much from either of these Team Williams runners, but at least they beat Magicool.

Group 3 The Bart Cummings (2500m)

I’m going to have to study this race a few times to figure it out as the results were a surprise.

Amelie’s Star – 1st

We’ve talked for awhile about her putting in some great sectionals without getting a result from the back, and she showed all of that and more to put them away here. Trainer Darren Weir said all she needed was a good barrier and with her win, she’s into the Melbourne Cup and jumps way into consideration as a favourite for the race.

We didn’t get a great deal of insight from the jockeys across this race, but here’s what Damian Lane said:

She’s only got 51kgs in the race, and won’t be penalised from this race so Weiry won’t want her to carry much more weight!

Granddukeoftuscany* – 2nd

…where’d that come from? At $91 to win, and $10 the place, he did all the work early and looked gone. Then he powered back! And beat Almandin! I can’t figure it out, but credit to the horse.

*He’s not nominated for any big races, but maybe he should’ve been?

Kellstorm – 3rd

The full brother to Order Of St George ran more like him and less like the Kellstorm we saw last run. He’s got ability and just needs to keep going with it. Impressive to run past Almandin and Harlem.

Almandin – 4th

He didn’t need to win to get into the Melbourne Cup and he was ridden very quiet. Ridden dead was the cry around social media, but I thought he was asked a few questions but perhaps the 60kgs told a bit of a story. In any case, he won dead quiet last start against a far weaker field and it’s not his grand final, so think of the bigger picture.

From the Stewards Report:

“Rider Damien Oliver could offer no explanation for the performance. A post race veterinary examination failed to reveal any abnormalities and a swab sample was taken for analysis.”

It’s a black mark, and does throw a small kink into the calculations. If you have a ticket on him, it’s worth keeping. And if you don’t, he’s looking short but you might get a longer price than what we expected. Let’s see if he goes into the Caulfield Cup now.

Harlem – 5th

Worked home with Almandin but couldn’t get him despite the weight turnaround, and Kellstorm ran past as well. Disappointing but he did peak last start in a very hard race. Next run will tell us more as that certainly wasn’t his grand final and they don’t want to bottom him out just yet.

Tally – =6th

Loomed and fell flat. He’s just not going well enough to win these races, but he’s still in the Melbourne Cup. I do wonder if they’ll start him.

Yogi – =6th

Imagine the connections were happy with that. He’s not going to get into the Melbourne Cup without lifting a few more lengths.

Vengeur Masque – 8th
Pentathlon – 9th

Both disappointed – maybe Pentathlon ran to expectations…?

Kinema – last

Pulled up out of it. Lame. That’ll end his Cup chances.

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