Caulfield Cup winner Jameka is one of several runners that have eased in betting for the Group 1 $6m Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington on Tuesday.
The Ciaron Maher trained Jameka started the day at $7.50 but has drifted out $1 to be $$8 second favourite behind the John O’Shea trained Hartnell who still sits at the top of the market order at Ladbrokes.com.au at $6 after starting the day at $5.
Lexus Stakes winner Oceanographer has also eased out to $9 from $8.50 and remians a top lightweight chance.
Jockey Nick Hall said that Jameka has improved since her runaway win in the Group 1 $3m BMW Caulfield Cup (2400m) at Caulfield on October 15 and expects the four year old mare to be very hard to beat in the Melbourne Cup.
“I am pretty excited and very confident,” Hall said.
“I had a sit on Jameka last Thursday. She is probably going better than she was going into the Caulfield Cup so we are really happy.”
Equal topweight Big Orange has also had plenty of support and after opening up at $18 when the final Melbourne Cup field was released has firmed into $14 on Monday afternoon.
Willie Mullins’ Irish stayer Wicklow Brave is another to be fancied by the punters and has firmed in from $18 to $15 even though the eight year old has drawn the outside barrier in the twenty-horse Melbourne Cup field.
The engagement of Europe’s best jockey Frankie Dettori to ride Wicklow Brave has been a huge influence for punters and Mullins is leaving the riding tactics up to the star hoop.
“I will let Frankie decide all those tactics. He’s been around the Melbourne Cup often enough,” Mullins said.
“He’s been riding out of his skin this year and he’s due a Melbourne Cup.
“I haven’t spoken to him about the Cup at all yet. I will probably have a word to him an hour or so before the race, but I will really be leaving it up to him.
“He’s ridden in plenty of them and hopefully he has a horse this year that will go close.”
Sydney Cup winner Gallante, one of four Lloyd Williams owned runners in the Melbourne Cup has shortened up from $71 to $51 while stablemate Assign is a long priced firmer from an opening price of $91 to $71.
The Lee and Anthony Freedman trained Exospheric is back out to $21 and Secret Number, one of five runners to carry the Godolphin royal blue colours, is also a long priced firmer from $31 to $26.
While the Chris Waller trained Grand Marshall has firmed in to $34 from $41, stablemate Who Shot Thebarman has had some support and also, firming in from $41 to $34.