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Melbourne Cup preview 2023

The great race - a good blend of foreign raiders, locally-trained imports and a couple of freaks who were bred locally. Where's the best formline - the Caulfield Cup, the Ebor, last year's Cup...? Vauban has been all the rage for a few months, but we've heard that song before. Willie Mullins is determined to win this race, he's been close several times. Fingers crossed for a dry day, there's nothing more annoying than rain on race day that messes up all the ratings. Weather report : 30C, likely storm but late in the day, so might be after the Cup. 70% chance of rain, but only up to 2mm - so how much of a storm actually is it? Might make the track slippery (favouring front-runners) if it arrives before the race.  Gold Trip winning in 2022 ====================================================== The Lexus Melbourne Cup Group 1 Handicap, 3200m AUS$8.4m,  Flemington 1500 local, 0400 GMT Expected going - Good 4, approaching Good 3 by race time depending on the breeze. 1 -
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Another Australian racing Ponzi scheme

 It's happened again (see pinned article above from a few years ago), but this time it's a lawyer that's the (alleged) crook! Law firm under investigation over bookies’ missing millions snippet The Victorian Bookmakers’ Association oversees a $10 million fund on behalf of its members, with about 20 per cent loaned out by AMS Ivanhoe to Melbourne first mortgagors. A source close to the bookmakers estimated at least $20 million in additional private investments had disappeared alongside $1.8 million from the association. The bookmakers’ association fears its $1.8 million investment is gone days before the biggest events on the spring racing calendar, including the Melbourne Cup, while one private investor could also be out of pocket an estimated $11 million. Apparently this has only come to light after the lawyer involved has died (although other reports suggest a death certificate hasn't yet been seen). More details in this RSN podcast . So rather than being a genius ti

2023 Cox Plate preview

The time-honoured W.S. Cox Plate, the best race in Aussie racing, the WFA championship over a proper racing distance (plus about 40m). It's not the best field of all time, but it's not a bad time by any stretch. The HK visitor had been a dominant favourite before he ran unplaced on local debut. Can he bounce back to the winner's circle? -------------------------- LADBROKES COX PLATE AU$5m, Group 1, WFA, 2040m Moonee Valley, 1710 local, 0710 UK time.   1. Romantic Warrior The champ of Hong Kong takes on Australia's best race. Is HK form up to Australia's? His figures by any international form measure do, if he ic close to his best. He could only run fourth in a fast-run Turnbull at his local debut when the trainer said he was only 80% fit. After first having a moan about his feed variety not being allowed into Australia (the US supplier refused to divulge the ingredient details so Aus quarantine refused it), he's been having a moan about the Werribee facilities n

2023 Caulfield Cup preview

The richest 2400m handicap in the world, a truly great race and a very strong edition of the race. After a lean few years of international involvement, we have some very good ones from Ireland, Japan and the UK. Five million dollars is worth the effort... All eyes will be on Caulfield this weekend, the forecast is for 23C with a chance of a shower or two.  ======================================= Carlton Draught Caulfield Cup AU$5m, Group 1 Handicap, 2400m 1715 local time, 0715 UKT 1. Gold Trip — Trainer: Ciaron Maher & David Eustace — Jockey: Ben Melham — 58.5kg The reigning Melbourne Cup winner who showed a blistering turn-of-foot to win the Turnbull Stakes three weeks ago, at set weights and penalties. Ran a close second last year, doing the hard work on the bend and hitting the front before being swamped late by a lightweight. Goes up only 1kg from last season and has earnt that rise. Loses his regular rider in Mark Zahra here, who was caught out by the uncertainty over him run

Caulfield Guineas preview

The big 'traditional' race of the weekend, the stallion-making classic worth $3m at Caulfield. The big stables are there yet there's a big boom on one from a smaller yard. We have the Blue Diamond winner, the AJC Sires & Champagne Stakes & Golden Rose winner, the JJ Atkins winner, the Stutt Stakes winner, the VRC Sires winner and the Guineas Prelude winner - it's a cracking race. ============================== Caulfield Guineas $3m, 1600m, Group 1 1710 local, 0710 UKT 1. Militarize Chris Waller/Joao Moreira runner full of stud interests as owners. Has made remarkable progress since starting 100/1 in the Golden Slipper and finishing near last from the outside gate. Since then he has won three of four, all at Group 1: the AJC Sires Produce, the Champagne and the Golden Rose, and all with the Brazilian magic man aboard. Drawn wide but tends to start slowly and drop back anyway. Superstar colt with a great turn of foot. Watch for him to be flying late. 2. Little Bro

The TAB Everest preview 2023

The TAB Everest - the richest race in the world on turf at $20m, but that's a bit of creative accounting since everyone pays $700k for a slot...and then every runner receives a minimum of $700k in prizemoney, i.e. a refund, even for seventh to 12th. A bit like 'winning' a lower dividend on the lottery, but getting not even enough to buy a chocolate bar after your entry fee is subtracted. But hey, never let the truth get in the way of a good story, Emperor PVL! A great race, a little curious that there's only one non-NSW runner in the field (#1) which does deny the race a bit of extra appeal, but these things are often cyclical.. or perhaps it highlights NSW's obsession with speed in their breeding. Anyhow, it's an excellent race in a new era without Nature Strip and Eduardo - bring on the new age. ============================== The TAB Everest AU$20m, 1200m, WFA Randwick 1615 local, 0615 UK 1. I Wish I Win (1) Loves the big money races in Sydney, won the $10m Go

2023 Prix de L'Arc de Triomphe preview

Perhaps not an Arc for the ages but that probably makes it more competitive than usual. Prix de L'Arc de Triomphe Group 1, no geldings, 2400m 16.05 local time, 15.05 UK, 01.05 Monday Melb/Sydney 1. Sisfahan - German-trained runner who will be happy to finish in the front half. Not won since last October. Last in the Preis von Baden recently, only piece of notable form was a second to Simca Mille in the Preis von Berlin at Hoppegarten. Not a pacemaker, will just sit back and pick off any tired ones. NFH. 2. Haya Zark - wins Group 3 races in bottomless swamps. Has neither of those criteria here. Beaten 40L by Simca Mille in the Grand Prix de Chantilly, but apparently it’s important to let camels like this run in the race rather than a gelding which might interfere with the gene pool. Has anybody that staying blood is worth FA these days? 3. Onesto - ran tenth, beaten 9L (very soft), in the race last year as a 3yo. Got closer in the Japan Cup on firmer ground, less than five length