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The Cup review

James McDonald feels the emotion of winning the Melbourne Cup on Verry Elleegant. (photo credit Darrian Traynor/Getty Images) With every man and his dog doing Cup previews these days, perhaps a postmortem of the race provides more value - at least for these more serious about the game or want something to refer back to in 363 days' time. It was great to see Flemington basking in the warm spring sun, with no threat of rain which buggers up the confidence you have in the state of the track, an integral part of betting on horses. The crowd was back, at least about 10% of the normal Cup day crowd, but 10,000 more than were allowed last year. Let us never have to deal with these restrictions again in our lifetimes. The TV coverage - well, um, ugh. On Derby Day, I was able to watch the stream in the UK while Sky Sports Racing kept to their normal NSW-controlled Sky Racing Aus coverage which denies that Victoria and South Australia exist. For Cup Day, they switched to the Chann
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Melbourne Cup preview - bet summary

The 2021 Lexus Melbourne Cup Group 1 handicap, 3200m AU$7,750,000 Tuesday Nov 2, 1500 local time, 0400 GMT Weather forecast - Fine, 30C Expected going - Good 3/4  Melbourne Cup favourite Incentivise (credit Brett Scala/Racing Photos) For the runner-by-runner preview, please click here . (Note - edits have been made since that article was first posted) There might be quite a solid pace here. I've got five potential leaders and another five racing prominently, and that's without the potential wildcard of Sir Lucan. He's dropped back in virtually all his races apart from his Yeats Stks win in May (2600m), and we know that Gai Waterhouse loves to see her horses up on the pace, especially when they've got a weight advantage on most of the field.  Yet if we switch back to Caulfield, we see what happened to Delphi when he tried to run Incentivise off his feet. If they take him on, their own chances suffer and there's no guarantee Incentivise suffers at all. That is, unless

Melbourne Cup runner-by-runner preview 2021

It's a funny Cup this year, with the world still dealing with (hopefully) the backend of a pandemic and the tighter veterinary regulation over imported runners, we have a largely Australian-trained field with just a handful of exceptions. Many locals will love it, "the form is easier to read", others will hate it "it shows just how bad our depth of local stayers really is" - either way, just deal with it and get on with finding the winner! The favourite Incentivise bids to be the first horse to win the Cups double since Ethereal in 2001 but the horse everyone keeps comparing him to is Might And Power in 1997 who won at Caulfield by a street, then literally fell in by a nostril at Flemington when Greg Hall famously thought he'd won on Doriemus.     With the favourite at around 6/4, for most punters it will come down to a simple for or against Incentivise. But don't forget there's plenty of money to chase in the exotic pools, even if the favour

Caulfield Cup preview 2021

The pandemic and the new screening restrictions on equine visitors from Europe make this a fairly mediocre Caulfield Cup. The top few in the original weights haven't accepted so we have the ridiculous situation of a topweight of 55.5kg - when the standard limit weight is only marginally below that for a run-of-the-mill race. Which makes it even harder to get top jockeys, the pool of which is already diluted by the Everest in Sydney. This race looked absolutely perfect for the front-running favourite, Incentivise, but the barrier draw has thrown a spanner in the works. He's drawn the extreme outside, 20 (18 after emergencies come out), a test last overcome by Dunaden back in 2012, but he came late with a sweeping run down the outside. Mer De Glace also won from 17 in 2019. Could he be the new Might And Power? Australian punters love a front-running champion! Might And Power was an absolute machine. 💪💪💪 — 7HorseRacing 🐎 (@7horseracing) October 14,

Qatar Prix de L'Arc de Triomphe preview

The best Flat race in Europe if not the world, but this year it seems a bit like a race in Dubai, all for the internationals rather than the locals, with the best of the locals currently priced at 25/1. Hopefully that's just a blip for the French industry, they've won the last couple after all. You do have to wonder about the French though, they're making a big deal of that @racingblogger bloke... QATAR PRIX DE L'ARC DE TRIOMPHE of €5,000,000 Group 1, 2400m, WFA, no geldings ParisLongchamp, Sunday 1605 local, 1505 UK, 0105 Melbourne Predicted Going - Soft/Very Soft 1. Torquator Tasso (12) - Has campaigned all his career in Germany before this, so it's tricky to get a line on just how good he is. One would think if they've waited this long to have a crack at international riches, then he's just a reserve-grade champion rather than a big time Charlie. Won the G1 Grosser Preis von Baden in September, beating Godolphin's Passion And Glory by nearly 5L. P

Weatherby's Super Sprint preview

A glorious format for a 2yo race where runners are handicapped based on their yearling sales price, with penalties for those who have won Pattern races so far. You won’t see any Coolmore or Godolphin blue-bloods here, nor any big-spending owner for that matter, this is a race for the battlers, and should be lauded for trying to put a big prize within reach for just a few grand. The top price paid for any of these was €57,000 for Raging. One day to go - and personalised paddock badges for owners with runners in tomorrow’s Weatherbys Super Sprint @NewburyRacing are at the ready! — Weatherbys Limited (@weatherbysltd) July 16, 2021 WEATHERBY'S SUPER SPRINT Newbury, Saturday 5f, 2yo, £200k, special weight conditions 1540 local, 0040 AEST 1.Raging Finished 2.5L behind Sierra Bonnie in the Woodcote and is another 10lb worse off here. Never got into the race that day and perhaps his first run at Epsom can be forgiven but his only win was on a soft track in a