Four Group 1’s across three different tracks headline racing in Australia this weekend.
Ahead of the action, we have looked into our ‘Crystal Ball’ and have come up with four predictions that might play out across the weekend.
Winner Of The Roy Higgins To Rise To Top Of Melbourne Cup Betting
We all know how reactive futures markets have become and the winner of Saturday’s Listed Roy Higgins will seal their spot in the final field for the Melbourne Cup. With the golden ticket available on Saturday for the first Tuesday of November, the Roy Higgins has attracted a competitive field. Former Melbourne Cup favourite Soulcombe stamped himself as a leading cup fancy when bolting in on Champion’s day at Flemington, but has been disappointing in two runs this autumn. The Chris Waller-trained son of Frankel returns to the scene of the crime from as he looks to find his best form.
New Zealand imports and emerging stayers, Goldman and So Unusual, head betting. So Unusual ($4.80) has won four races on the bounce, including overcoming traffic to nail Youth Spirit last start. Goldman ($2.90) currently holds favouritism following two five-length romps in New South Wales midweek racing. Although it is unlikely that the winner will move past White Marlin as the Melbourne Cup favourite, we expect the winner to join him at $11.
Best Race At Flemington Won’t Be The Feature
The Group 1 Australian Cup is the feature race on Saturday at Flemington, but it is the previous race which has set tongues wagging. In a full field of 17 runners, just two maintain a stranglehold on the betting. Benedetta ($3.20) and What You Need ($2.70) currently share just over 68% of the market. The Ciaron Maher and David Eustace-trained Recommendation ($11 – $9.50) is the only other runner in single-figures.
The market replicates two emerging horses who have the world at the hoofs. Both were brilliant winning down the straight last start. What You Need extended his unbeaten streak to two when bolting in over 1100m a fortnight ago, while Benedetta made it four wins in five starts when bolting in the Inglis Sprint a week prior. The winner may stamp themselves as a potential superstar.
International’s To Dominate At Rosehill
We got a reminder of the strength surrounding the international horses at Rosehill last weekend when Dubai Honour trounced his opposition in the Ranvet Stakes. The international presence will only continue to get stronger in the coming weeks as we lead into The Championships. At Rosehill, New Zealand raider Full Of Sincerity opened favourite for the Group 3 Tulloch Stakes, but has now drifted to $4.20 on the second line of betting. The Sellwood Stakes has attracted three horses having their first Australian start; Gear Up, Fancy Man and Third Realm. However, the horse the market has come for the most is the Joseph O’Brien-trained Statement in race six, who has been $6 – $3.60 for the Group 2 Emancipation Stakes.
Australian Debutants at Rosehill:
Race 3 – G2 Tulloch Stakes.
Full Of Sincerity ($4.20)
Race 4 – G3 Sellwood Stakes.
Gear Up ($8)
Fancy Man ($15)
Third Realm ($7.50)
Race 6 – Emancipation Stakes.
Going Global ($17)
Times Square ($21)
Race 7 – G1 Vinery Stud Stakes.
Race 8 – G1 Tancred Stakes.
Race 9 – G3 Doncaster Prelude.
Times Square ($15)
Race 10 – Benchmark88 Handicap.
Cleveland To Stamp Himself As The Horse To Beat In The Sydney Cup
Cleveland is a proven stayer and looks a clear early pick for the Sydney Cup. The Joseph O’Brien-trained five-year-old has won over 3749m in Great Britain when carrying 57kg to beat Coltrane. He backed-up that performance when carrying 61kg in a Weight-For-Age Group 3 in Ireland, running second to Gear Up. Cleveland will carry just 51kg in the Sydney Cup as well.
He is currently $7 with TAB for the Group 1 Tancred Stakes at Rosehill on Saturday and although there is an easy case to be made for the son of Camelot this weekend, he isn’t suited at set-weights carrying 59kg and looks primed to strike second-up in the 3200m feature.