Grade Group 1
Track Rating Good 4
2018 winner Best Solution ($12)
Despite the introduction of several glamorous high profile races in recent times, the Caulfield Cup still holds its prestigious place on the Australian racing calendar.
Randwick's Everest spectacular will attract a heavy focus on Saturday afternoon, however many will be engaged in the cups tradition at Caulfield.
The staying feature always provides an intriguing betting proposition, with punters also keeping one eye on potential
Melbourne Cup prospects.
I am with the local brigade on this occasion, however I must concede that the international contingent look right up to the challenge after prevailing last year.
Caulfield Track Traits
The Caulfield surface is currently rated a Good 4, with the rail in the true position the entire circuit and rain predicted for Saturday in Melbourne.
With this set-up, expect the track to play fair and both on and off speed profiles to have their chance.
As always, a close watch is advised early to determine any fast lanes or bias.
Racing Market Movers
Constantinople is the early mover in betting, firming from an opening quote of $11.00 to now trade at $8.50.
At longer odds,
Wolfe has come into $21 from $26 openers following his victory in the Coongy Cup on Wednesday.
All other runners remain steady.
#1 Hartnell $19
Has continued to run well all preparation without winning and I'm happy to mark the nine-year-old as a genuine "tease" horse now.
He will put in his usual honest effort, however you can expect the current price of $19 to drift and for a few of these to have his measure. Avoid.
#2 Mirage Dancer $15
International raider who has some solid recent UK form, placing at his past three which were all at Group level.
They have found the services of betting plunge rider Ben Melham, who is often engaged when stables set one up to fire.
I doubt they are doing that here in a
Caulfield Cup with this horse, however if the money came late it would create interest.
#3 Mer De Glace $7.00
Interesting runner who is fresh off the plane from Japan, where their best stayers are often considered far superior to ours.
He has won his past four starts with the past two being at Group 3 level, which has been followed by a 10 week break.
I doubt he is in the class of past Japanese raiders Delta Blues or Pop Rock, however he can still give this a shake.
Watch betting late for the best guide.
#4 Mustajeer $11
Another of the UK internationals who is dripping in class and displays form of the highest quality.
He is this year's Ebor winner, which is typically an excellent guide to a horse's chance in our top staying features.
The reports are that he is flying and although the ownership group were devastated by the draw in barrier 16, trust Olly to find cover in the moving line.
Could simply blow them away.
#5 Rostropovich $21
Hayes, Hayes and Dabernig are always dangerous in this race, with plenty of historical success with horses at odds.
He was good last start in the
Turnbull Stakes, when he grinded home steadily to finish midfield and should improve now up to 2400m.
Appears to be a touch less dynamic than most and would need a hot tempo up front. Risk.
#6 Finche $6
Has done everything right in the key lead up events and is from the shrewd Waller yard.
He was excellent in the Turnbull when just missing by 0.2 lengths behind Kings Will Dream. Prior to that, the Randwick Kingston Town win was also impressive.
Although drawn awkwardly out in gate 19 here, he should still be stoking up again from a midfield position and must be considered a leading hope. Yes.
#11 Constantinople $11 > $8.50
Is the more fancied of the Lindsay Park quartet and does bring solid UK form, finishing no worse than second at his past six races.
The draw in gate 7 has favoured them significantly and rider Luke Nolan can position close to speed if required.
He should be the one tucked just in behind the leaders and presenting at the right time. Yes.
#12 Mr Quickie $9
The last start 10 of 11 in the Turnbull should easily be forgiven, as they crawled up front making it a near impossible task for the back-markers.
He is right in this going off the
Makybe Diva Stakes run two starts back, when he flew late to grab third.
He now gets one of the best staying riders around in John Allen, which is a big tick.
I expect there to be enough speed up front here to allow him to get home hard late.
Now that the mugs have dropped off, he goes on top for me.
#14 Vow and Declare $9
Gained plenty of admirers following a ripping first-up run, where he stormed late into fourth over the unsuitably short 2000m of the Turnbull.
He won the Tattersalls Cup (3000m) over the Brisbane Winter Carnival and showed excellent staying credentials in that run.
There's no doubt we are witnessing an exciting young stayer on the rise, who just needs to hold the first-up form to be fighting out the finish here. Will go very close.
#16 The Chosen One $17
Was simply dominant when braining them all in the Herbert Power last start.
This is much harder however he looks right up to it following the arrogance shown in weaker grade last time.
Given any luck from the tricky draw (gate 22) he should be storming home to be in the finish. Yes.
#18 Wolfe $26 > $21
Snuck into the field on Wednesday following a tough on pace win in the Coongy Cup and does look a genuine lightweight (50kg) contender.
His form is excellent and the on-pace racing style is likely to have him popular with the professional model players.
Expect him to lead with ease here and prove very hard to run past. Could start shorter.
Of The Others
#15 Brimham Rocks was well supported to start favourite in the Sydney Cup, before putting in a disappointing effort to run 9 of 14.
Although drawn wide in gate 20 here, the stable are far too good to ignore and he could easily bounce back and surprise.
With the mug money dropping right off, the price could be value.
Best Racing Tips
1 st Mr Quickie
2 nd Vow and Declare
3 rd Finche
4 th The Chosen One