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Spring Racing Market Updates: Hartnell still Cup favourite

Mon, Oct 24, 10:06am by Senior Writer

Hartnell may have had his colours lowered to the tune of eight lengths by Winx in the Cox Plate, but he remains a $4.60 favourite for the race the stops a nation – the Melbourne Cup to be held on November 1.

Hartnell was given a good chance to upset the defending champion in Saturday’s weight-for-age championship over 2040m, but after being as short as $2.80, started the race as $5 second favourite and was simply no match for Australia’s best racehorse.

But even in defeat, there was still faith that the 3200m around Flemington would be much more to Hartnell’s liking and he is clear top pick ahead of Caulfield Cup winner Jameka, who is $6.50 with Sportsbet.

Those two are pretty much fighting a lone battle against the international invasion with a minimum of 10 internationally-trained horses expected to contest the event.

A decision is expected on Monday whether Scottish heads to the Melbourne Cup, but bookies are keeping the Caulfield Cup runner-up safe at $13, behind the Lloyd Williams owned pair of Bondi Beach ($11) and Almandin ($12).

Heartbreak City is $14, while the David Hayes trained Almoonqith ($15) has kept well in the market off his good run in the Caulfield Cup.

Grand Marshal won Saturday’s Moonee Valley Gold Cup and is now a $26 shot for the Melbourne Cup, while Who Shot Thebarman, the stable mate who he beat into second place, is $17.

Big Orange, fifth in the Melbourne Cup last year, is $16, the same price as Exospheric, while Irish raider Wicklow Brave, is $18.

Real Love and Oceanographer are both at $21.

With just eight days left until the running of the $6.2 million race, the one free ticket left for those outside the top 24 in the order of entry is Saturday’s Lexus Stakes over 2500m.

With the old Mackinnon Stakes no longer run on Victoria Derby Day, the Lexus will now be the only race where Melbourne Cup hopefuls will run at Flemington.

The market for the first day’s feature race, the Victoria Derby, has well and truly sorted itself out with Sacred Elixir, the winner of the Vase at Moonee Valley on Saturday, now $3.20 favourite.

The Kiwi stayer was a dominant winner on Saturday and holds clear top pick over So Si Bon ($7) who was third behind him on Saturday.

Good Standing, the winner of the Caulfield Classic nine days ago, is next in betting at $8, while Inference, third in that race, is next at $9.

The Group 1 Myer Stakes is also run on Saturday, with First Seal the favourite at $5 before nominations were taken ahead of Don’t Doubt Mamma ($6.50).

The Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m) for the three-year-olds will also be run, with last start G1 winners Extreme Choice ($3) and Astern ($3.40) expected to fight out favouritism. Star Turn ($5) and Flying Artie ($7.50), both winners at Caulfield, are next in betting.

The final Group 1 is the Cantela Stakes, formerly the 1600m Emirates which has been now switched to the first day.

That’s a very open race with Toorak Handicap winner He’s Our Rokkii sharing top billing in the market at $6 along with Seaburge.

Melbourne Cup Market (Sportsbet)

Hartnell $4.6

Jameka $6.5

Bondi Beach $11

Almandin $12

Scottish $13

Heartbreak City $14

Almoonqith $15

Big Orange $16

Exospheric $16

Who Shot Thebarman $17

Wicklow Brave $18

Real Love $21

Oceanographer $21

Grand Marshal $26

Curren Mirotic $26

Secret Number $26

Others $31 or longer

Cantela Stakes (Sportsbet)

He’s Our Rokkii $6

Seaburge $6

Palentino $8

Mackintosh $9

Voodoo Lad $9

Le Romain $11

Mccreery $13

Hey Doc $13

Danish Twist $13

Hopfgarten $13

Humidor $13

Vadamos $13

Federal $15

Good Project $17

Tivaci $17

Others $21 or longer

Victoria Derby Market: (Sportsbet)

Sacred Elixir $3.2

So Si Bon $7

Good Standing $8

Inference $9

Rocketeer $11

Prized Icon $11

Swear $11

Beach Life $13

Captain Duffy $13

Tumultuous $15

Highlad $17

Kent $17

Morvada $21

Wine Bush $26

Hollywood Mo $26

Veladero $26

Others $31 or longer

Myer Classic Market: (Sportsbet)

First Seal $5

Don’t Doubt Mamma $6.5

Dixie Blossoms $8

Danish Twist $8

Silent Sedition $9

Extensible $9.5

Euro Angel $11

Shillelagh $13

Abbey Marie $13

Lady Le Fay $13

Heavens Above $15

Rising Romance $17

Serene Majesty $17

Pearls $17

French Emotion $17

Others $21 or longer

Coolmore Stud Stakes: (Sportsbet)

Extreme Choice $3

Astern $3.4

Star Turn $5

Flying Artie $7.5

Russian Revolution $8

Capitalist $9

Archives $26

Saracino $26

Derryn $26

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