FLEMINGTON: MELBOURNE CUP - 7th Nov 2017
Track: GOOD(3) - Weather: CLOUDY - Rail: TRUE
Betting Portfolio ($50):
The weather forecast is overcast, but with not much in the way of rain heading into Tuesday and this track should remain quite firm. On Saturday the track played really fairly, though there probably was a slight advantage to be on speed and close to the rails and nothing much made ground out wide. Down the straight they came to the middle, but suspect the better going is still closer to the rails. Expect that pattern to maintain for most of today, and again focus on those racing on speed and with good barriers.

In the Melbourne Cup, the overloaded number of internationals really sucks any punting interest out of the Great Race as they are impossible to line up and have a confident bet on. We stick to the tried and true method of if they havenít raced out here, donít back them. Sure that is going to come unstuck one year, but you will already be so far ahead for the past 20 years of ignoring the media hype, you wonít give a hoot regardless. We have 11 internationals running this year, with 8 runners not having a lead up run in Australia. One will probably get into the finish somewhere, and it is normally the one with the least media hype and at the longest odds, so throw those random numbers into your multiples to collect big.

The speed should be genuine, but not overly fast, unless there is always the unknown factor of one of the Williams stable runners suddenly losing control running out to a big lead. Otherwise we have 24-CISMONTANE going forward like he did on Saturday, 16-GALLANTE who likes to lead and maybe 8-BONDI BEACH going forward from the inside barrier. Listen out for tactics on the Williams stable runners they are normally pretty good for publicly stating them before a race. One or more of the internationals should also go forward like 4-TIBERIAN or 14-US ARMY RANGER. But we canít see the speed being that fast, and think the winner will come from something who box seats here from a good barrier and has a turn of foot early in the straight.

Going to rate the 20-WALL OF FIRE on top here, and it is rare that we tip an international runner, but this is one we have seen and his first start in Australia in the Herbert Power at Caulfield was sensational. Carrying top weight, on a track favouring leaders he came from last, wide around the turn off a solid tempo and was making ground right to the line. That was a very solid staying run, and he is nicely drawn out in space here to come hard down the middle of the track. Would prefer if the jockey was a bit more positive out of the barrier though and had him sitting midfield or better during the run. Main danger is the 7-JOHANNES VERMEER whose two Australian runs has been excellent, and we deliberately avoided him in the Caulfield Cup because we thought he would drop back from an inside barrier, get cluttered for runs and finish on late Ė which is exactly what happened. Has drawn inside again, so slight chance that will happen again, but he has the turn of foot to sprint through the field here if the gap comes and think that is important. Donít think there are many winning chances in this race at all, in fact think probably one of these two will win.

There are a few roughies to consider though, and want to give a big push for the 19-SINGLE GAZE, who has been tough all spring and was really good in the Caulfield Cup bringing the field up to the tear away leader, hitting the lead at the top of the straight and fighting on to run 2nd. Slight query at the 3200M, but think she is drawn to get a perfect PRINCE OF PENZANCE style sit here just behind the speed and think she is going to run a lot better than expected. Also got a lot of time for the 17-LIBRAN who was good chasing late in the Moonee Valley Cup and looks to be building to something this spring and has a great barrier draw, and the 13-BIG DUKE, who would probably prefer some rain and to be drawn out a bit more, but you can forgive that last run when he had no room late. Will be playing with win bets and quinellas around this group, maybe even standing out a wide trifecta with the two main chances to win. The best rough chances are definitely the 19-SINGLE GAZE and 17-LIBRAN.

Normally the Melbourne Cup program is race after race of $20 plus winners, a monster quadrella and no hope for punters, with form lines converging from all around the country. But there are quite a few we are following going around today and keener to have a bet than most other years. No best bets, being Cup Day, but plenty of small each way bets and we have found plenty of long shots in the selections to keep you interested.

BEST EACH WAY: Race 2: 10-STORMSABREWING $2.50 EW
QUINELLA: Race 2: 3,8,10,11,13 boxed x $5 = 50%
One we are admittedly guilty of tipping too often, but happy to give her another chance today. Fitter for the 2 runs in, ran on well 1st up and then presented, but just looked to run out of condition last start at Caulfield. Normally drops back and runs on well late, but there isnít much speed here and would be good to see them make use of the good barrier here and ride her more forward. Strikes a very winnable race and looks ready to improve so have something each way at around $13. There is also a roughie here we are very interested in, the 11-ROCK AWAY at around $26. She surprised with a 1st up win at $100, but then was huge last start at MV when missed the start badly, railed through on the corner hit the line and almost got up and won. Drawn well, and can race handy and think she might be in the finish at odds so also letís box up an quinella which blows out if the short priced favourite the (3) doesnít get into the finish (and you donít want to go backing $3 chances on Melbourne Cup day).

BEST EACH WAY: Race 6: 3-COUNTERPLAY $3 EW
One who has been racing really consistently and went into everyoneís black book when she missed the start, then cut through the field and finished on strongly last start at Caulfield. Very consistent type, placed 5 of 6 careers starts and although the favourite the (2) beat her last time think she might go close to turning the tables today and looks a relatively safe each way bet at around $6.

BEST EACH WAY: Race 8: 13-NOZOMI $3 EW
Most punters hate this one, as he doesnít win that often, and he blew everyone out in the quaddie here a few months back at $100. But he has actually been racing pretty consistently, Cranbourne Cup run was OK, but two starts prior were excellent when finished hard both times to not miss by much. He is very, very one paced, but think he is a Flemington horse, and he is suited coming wide and making a long clear run at them which should happen today. 1800M and Flemington stats are actually pretty good. Not a lot of speed in this race either, so again would want the jockey to be a bit more positive and take him forward. Think he is a nice each way bet at around $14 and suspect he will drift a fair bit coming into the race as he is not the most popular horse going around.

BEST EACH WAY: Race 10: 6-MISS GUNPOWDER $3 EW
QUINELLA: Race 10: 6-MISS GUNPOWDER#3,9,10,11 x $2 = 50%
Really consistent type whose two runs this time in have both been good and right in the finish last start at MV. Dry tracks, on speed, 1400M is her go and she just looks ready to win here, drawn a perfect barrier and should put herself into the race at the right time. Each way at around $8, and in a field with a lot of winning chances there should be good value in a quinella as she should be in the finish somewhere. Anchor her in a quinella with the strong finishing 11-SWAMPLAND, who looks well over the odds, especially in a race where there seems to be a fair bit of speed, the consistent on pacer the (9), the (3) who was SCR from Sat for this and the leader the (10).

BEST ROUGH: Race 4: 4-SWACEDELIC $3 EW
The other staying race on Cup Day is always super tricky but think we have found one at greats odds today. This guy is a really tough, strong finishing stayer who ran a close 4th in this race last year when didnít have much luck at all. Strong staying performance to win at Mornington two starts back, and then had to lump 60kgs in a slowly run race at Caulfield when he actually fought it out well to the line. Nice drop in weight today. Speed on here, big staying field and tough staying contest suits and he has drawn really well so might not drop back as far as normal. Quite keen on this one today, despite the big field, and will be having a bit of a crack at around $11, and suspect he will be closer to $20 come race time as money comes for the spruik stayers.

BEST ROUGH: Race 5: 11-PREZADO $2 EW
The 3YO sprint race looks pretty hot, with a fair bit of depth and realistically this maiden isnít well suited under this weight scale. But there is also an awful lot of speed, and this guy has been showing some talent dropping back and running on late, so he might get a race run to suit today. Drawn wide to sit back and run on strongly late, query will just be if he gives them too big a start, but watch out for him flying home late. Have a little something at rough odds of around $21.

BEST ROUGH: Race 7: 17-LIBRAN $1.50 EW
BEST ROUGH: Race 7: 19-SINGLE GAZE $1 EW
So far this spring we have had a $100 winner in the Caulfield Guineas and a $50 winner in the Caulfield Cup, so watch out for the long shot roughies in the Melbourne Cup as well. The 19-SINGLE GAZE has been racing really well, fought on well in the Caulfield Cup and is going to get a good on speed run today. The 17-LIBRAN is our 4th pick, and so not in the selections, but have been tossing and turning all day about putting him in, so taking a back up plan and putting him in here. He is a solid staying type, coming off a good MV Cup run and drawn well, think he is going to be in the finish today. Both at around $41 and we think both are going to run better than the market suggests.

LAY OF THE DAY : Race 10: 1-FUHRYK at around $5.50
Pretty tough finding a Lay of the Day today as there are not many runners under $5 and we donít like taking on last start winners, so fully aware that this one may sting us Ė but a Lay hasnít won for a while now. Bounced back to form last start after two disappointing defeats as short priced favourite, but did get the race set up for her last start, on pacers track, perfect sit and gap came. She is a classy sprinting filly, but yet to win past 1200M, and there just seems to be plenty of winning chances in this race, and she is giving weight to all of them Ė so keener to back others.

TURF DELI WONDER BET : Here we try and turn $5 into a whole lot more.
QUINELLA: Race 7: 4,7,13,17,19,20 boxed x $5 = 33.33%
We went really close to the $600 quinella in the Caulfield Cup, finding the long shot winner BOOM TIME, so letís have another crack at it today Ė but putting in one extra runner. We think the two main winning chances are the 20-WALL OF FIRE, 7-JOHANNES VERMEER being internationals coming off good local runs, and the value roughies are the 19-SINGLE GAZE, 17-LIBRAN and 13-BIG DUKE, all at very nice odds. We need a random international in the finish, so letís put in the 4-TIBERIAN. Think we will be looking at another $200 plus quinella in a race with so many unknowns.

The Tips:

Race 1: EARLY 2YO. GRAB A SELFIE WITH BART STATUE
Race 2: 10-STORMSABREWING, 3-INVINCIBELLA, 11-ROCK AWAY
Race 3: 12-DIVINE QUALITY, 5-FOX HALL, 8-ATLANTIC CITY
Race 4: 4-SWACEDELIC, 16-UBIN THUNDERSTRUCK, 3-GRANDDUKEOFTUSCANY
Race 5: 8-NATURE STRIP, 2-BANDIPUR, 11-PREZADO
Race 6: 3-COUNTERPLAY, 2-OUR CROWN MISTRESS, 9-YULONG XINGSHENG
Race 7: 20-WALL OF FIRE, 7-JOHANNES VERMEER, 19-SINGLE GAZE
Race 8: 13-NOZOMI, 4-MAURUS, 19-ODEON (emerg), 12-PURE PRIDE
Race 9: 3-FAATINAH, 10-CRYSTAL DREAMER, 18-IíM TELLING YA
Race 10: 6-MISS GUNPOWDER, 11-SWAMPLAND, 9-QUILISTA