Melbourne Cup – Analysis and Selections for Race 7A (Flemington)


Race 7A (Flemington) – 11 PM ET Monday Night

Anthony’s Picks:  Top – #2 Criterion (14/1)   2nd – #8 Max Dynamite (15/1)    3rd – #12 Sky Hunter (40/1) 

Suggested wagers:

8 units WIN on # 2 Criterion.  4 units WIN on #12 Sky Hunter

1 unit exacta “part wheel”:  2,8,12 with 2,3,8,10,11,12,19 (18 units)

Handicapping this year’s Melbourne Cup is very challenging.

#2 Criterion has faced some of best in Europe and he has the best recent speed figures in the field.  His trainer team of David Hayes and Tom Dabernig is world class.  Ran a brave second place despite minor interference in the Cox Plate ten days ago but in Australia that is not considered a a drawback, as the winner of this race 2 years ago, Fiorente, lost the Cox Plate by only a head and came right back to win the Melbourne Cup ten days later.   To be fair, Fiorente was extremely well bred to get 2 miles, and Criterion is not, as Criterion is by a champion 2yo sprinter named Sebring.  Hayes thinks the horse can do it, so why not?  Given the extremely reasonable 14/1 odds on this bloke from a perfect post where he can get a good position early it is worth a small financial risk that he can stretch his speed from 10 furlongs to 16 furlongs.

#8 Max Dynamite has one race to recommend him – a monster effort on August 21st in a 2 mile race.  Unraced since, it was probably decided to come directly to Melbourne for the Cup.  Note this one does not win at a high percentage, and it’s questionable he can reproduce that strong a race again.  BUT he gets post 2 and the wonderful Frankie Dettori, who rode the horse horse on the August 21st effort.  If everything comes together he is certainly a live contender for a top three placing.

#12 Sky Hunter is really pretty good.  His race in Dubai on March 7th was outstanding, and he gets in light with a nice post in 7.  In my opinion his last race on Sept. 19th was just to get him fit and a close finish insured that.  William Buick is on his way to becoming a top five jockey in Europe and the Godolphin team win their share of staying races.  He has a lot of tactical speed, and a low weight of 119 pounds (for example, Criterion has to carry 127 pounds) which should help in this largely paceless field.  Currently 40/1 in the betting and I think he also could be in with a huge shout.

#3 Fame Game from Japan is a logical contender but compared to other contenders he will be only 4/1 and I think the race pace will be several lengths SLOW EARLY, which will compromise his very relaxed “come from behind” style. I am trying to beat him and several other closers in the win spot buy focusing on horses that I think will be in the to 6 or 7 runners early.

Melbourne Australia racing turf

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