Last year this Ocean Park gelding trained by Chris Waller won the Group 3 Bill Ritchie Handicap, the Group 1 Epsom Handicap and the Golden Eagle all in a row. This year he has won the Group 1 George Main Stakes, then the Group 2 Hill Stakes over 2000m by 2 lengths. He is in great form and has to be rated a strong chance.
Also from the Waller stable, this eight-year-old Teofilo gelding is the oldest runner in the race. His lead-up form is 2nd in the Underwood and 3rd in the Caulfield Stakes. In both those races the trifecta had Humidor, Arcadia Queen and Russian Camelot but in different places. He has been in this race before running 2nd to Winx in 2017, 3rd behind Winx in 2018 and 4th behind Lys Gracieux last year. It would be no surprise to see him in the finish again.
3. Fierce Impact
This seven-year-old is best over 1600m , but he did win the 2018 Group 3 Summer Cup over 2000m at Randwick. He won the Group 1 Makybe Diva Stakes in September before 2 lengths,0.2 lengths 3rd in the Hill Stakes behind Kolding last start.
4. Master Of Wine
After finishing 0.8 lengths in the Turnbull Stakes, he was well-supported in the Caulfield Cup last start but weakened after racing on the speed and finished 10th of 18. Has some place prospects.
This six-year-old gelding from the Kris Lees stable has been performing very well this campaign. He won three in a row including the the G3 Premiers Cup and the G3 Newcastle Gold Cup, before 2nd in the G1 Metropolitan. He hasn’t been to Moonee Valley before but I still expect to see him go well.
This six-year-old is having his first start in Australia but has raced in Britain, Germany and Hong Kong. He won the Group 2 York Stakes over 2063m on 25 July, which was his last race before coming here. Like all the imports, it is hard to line his form up.
7. Sir Dragonet
Another runner having his first Australian start, this five-year-old is currently 11th on the order of entry for the Melbourne Cup. He finished 2nd in the Group 1 Curragh Gold Cup over 2012m at his last start.
8. Magic Wand
This Irish mare came to Australia last Spring when she ran 4th in this race, 10th in the Melbourne Cup and then won the Mackinnon Stakes. She went home via Hong Kong where she ran 2nd in the G1 Hong Kong Cup, the US where she was 2nd in the G1 World Cup Invitational and Saudi Arabia where she finished 9th of 14 in the Saudi Cup on a dirt track. She must have more frequent flyer points than most of us, and although she has been well beaten at her last three starts she can never be underestimated.
9. Arcadia Queen
She was a close 2nd in the G2 Let’s Elope Stakees on 12 September, 3rd in the G1 Underwood Stakes on 26 September, then was very impressive charging home over the last 100m to win the G1 Caulfield Stakes on 10 October. I really like her and expect her to be fighting out the finish.
She ran the best last 400m race sectional when 2nd in the G3 Craven Plate over 2000m last start, but she seems to do her best over 1600m. She has only been to Moonee Valley once before when she won a fillies and mares handicap over this distance in 2018.
11. Russian Camelot
This four-year-old has only missed the quinella once in his eight races. He won the G1 SA Derby at the end of last campaign at his first try at Group level. He resumed for a close 2nd in the G1 Makybe Diva Stakes, a dominant win in the G1 Underwood and then was beaten into 2nd place by Arcadia Queen in the G1 Caulfield Stakes. He is a very good horse and one of the main chances.
A beautifully bred horse that has been placed on four occasions at Group 1 level overseas. His last run was 3rd in the G1 Irish Champion over 2012m at Leopardstown on 12 September.
This Savabeel mare has an impressive record of eight wins and six 2nds from her 18 starts. She won the G3 Bill Ritchie Stakes by 1.3 lengths, then the Epsom Handicap by a length. I’m expecting her to run a place.
He is the only three-year-old in the race, so carries 9.5kg less than half of the field. He has had six starts and his only win was a 2YO handicap over 1250m. He finished 3rd in the G1 Caulfield Guineas but this looks too big an ask of him.
15. Buckhurst – 1st Emergency
He is currently 15th on the Melbourne Cup order of entry and is not expected to get a run here. He contested the G1 Caulfield Cup last week at his first Australian start and chased steadily for 3.4 lengths 7th.