Set your alarms for the wee small hours as the international racing carnival pulls up to Flemington for the Melbourne Cup.
This staying flat handicap was a wholly domestic affair, (controversially including NZ), for many years, but as the prize money has grown so has European interest. So much so that the top of the market this year is dominated by the UK and Irish challenge.
The Irish have sorted this out, but no UK runner has ever lifted the trophy….or at least not until about 4.10am tomorrow!!
Despite a strong Aidan O’Brien challenge headed by favourite, but badly drawn, Yucatan, this looks between the UK bass challenge of Marmelo, Cross Counter and Muntahaa.
We tipped Marmelo last year and he should do better this time from a handier draw. A wide draw is a challenge to the otherwise very well handicapped youngster Cross Counter.
The one with all the ticks in the boxes is Muntahaa. He has always had a touch of class since destroying Marmelo in a maiden. He has been brought slowly forward this year until crushing the opposition with a dominant win in the Ebor. That race is as similar a guide to this as Europe offers and he won easily off a high rating of 109, despite a less than ideal draw. He has a useful middle draw here, regular jockey Jim Crowley, and travels from the genius stable of John Gosden.
Worth getting up for.
Muntahaa, (0400 Flemington), 2pts win, 10/1 generally available
Please subscribe for latest tips and news, and follow us on Twitter and Facebook