Caulfield Cup winner Jameka has drawn perfectly at barrier three for the Group 1 $6m Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington on Tuesday.
Trainer Ciaron Maher is chasing his first win in ‘The Race That Stops A Nation’ but is no stranger to saddling up Group 1 winners at Flemington with back to back wins in the Group 1 $1m Crown Oaks (2500m) with Jameka last year and Set Square in 2014.
Jameka has a great chance to be the first horse to win the Caulfield Cup – Melbourne Cup double in the same year since Kiwi mare Ethereal collected the double in 2001.
Jameka goes up 2kg on her Caulfield Cup win and Maher is confident that jockey Nick Hall will give her another top class ride from barrier three.
“Very happy with it. It is all up to Nick now,” Maher said.
“I have just been rapt with the preparation, she has improved every start and I really think she has trained on since the Caulfield Cup.”
“She is in super order, she is very bright, she worked super and I am rapt with her.”
“I would imagine that she would be in the first eight horses and Nick has got so much confidence in this horse and I am sure he will ride a positive race.”
“There looks to be nice speed and he will probably just drop her in somewhere, get a bit of cover and hope she has the same turn of foot she showed in the Caulfield Cup.”
Jameka is on the third line of betting at $8 with Ladbrokes.com.au behind the John O’Shea trained Hartnell at $5 and today’s Lexus Stakes winner Oceanographer at $6.50.
Hartnell has drawn midfield at barrier twelve and James McDonald will be able to give him every chance to run out a strong 3200m.
The Charlie Appleby trained Oceanographer has drawn next to Hartnell in barrier eleven and has the huge advantage of only having to carry 52kg with Hong Kong based lightweight jockey Chad Schofield in the saddle.
Appleby will also saddle up Geelong Cup winner Qewy who drew out wide at barrier fifteen.
Godolphin trainer Saeed Bin Suroor has drawn the inside gate with Beautiful Romance and the Newmarket trainer will also saddle up Secret Number who drew barrier ten.
Frankie Dettori will have a lot of work to do on the Willie Mullins trained Irish stayer Wicklow Brave who drew the outside barrier in the twenty-four Melbourne Cup field.
The Williams family had a mixed bag with their four runners with the Aidan O’Brien trained Bondi Beach drawing barrier five and Robert Hickmott’s Gallante coming up with gate two but their other two Melbourne Cup runners from Mt Macedon will have to contend with wide draws with Almandin coming up with seventeen and Assign with Katelyn Mallyon to ride to jump from gate twenty-two.
Lee and Anthony Freedman would be happy with barrier six for equal topweight Our Ivanhowe while their other runner Exospheric was handed barrier thirteen.
MELBOURNE CUP FIELD AND BARRIER DRAW (3200m, FLEMINGTON, NOVEMBER 1)
- 1. BIG ORANGE (Michael Bell) Jamie Spencer, 57kg (7)
- 2. OUR IVANHOWE (Anthony & Lee Freedman), Dwayne Dunn, 57kg, (6)
- 3. CURRENT MIROTIC (Osamu Hirata), Tommy Berry, 56.5kg, (18)
- 4. BONDI BEACH (Aidan O’Brien), Ryan Moore, 56kg, (5)
- 5. EXOSPHERIC (Anthony & Lee Freedman), Damien Oliver, 56kg, (13)
- 6. HARTNELL (John O’Shea), James McDonald, 56kg, (12)
- 7. WHO SHOT THEBARMAN (Chris Waller), Hugh Bowman, 56kg, (20)
- 8. WICKLOW BRAVE (Willie Mullins), Frankie Dettori, 56kg, (24)
- 9. ALMOONQITH (David, Ben Hayes & Tom Dabernig), Michael Walker, 54.5kg, (19)
- 10. GALLANTE (Robert Hickmott), Blake Shinn, 54.5kg, (2)
- 11. GRAND MARSHAL (Chris Waller), Ben Melham, 54.5kg, (9)
- 12. JAMEKA (Ciaron Maher), Nicholas Hall, 54.5kg, (3)
- 13. HEARTBREAK CITY (Tony Martin), Joao Moreira, 54kg, (23)
- 14. SIR JOHN HAWKWOOD (John P Thompson), Blake Spriggs, 54kg, (14)
- 15. EXCESS KNOWLEDGE (Gai Waterhouse & Adrian Bott), Vlad Duric, 53.5kg, (21)
- 16. BEAUTIFUL ROMANCE (Saeed Bin Suroor), Damian Lane, 52.5kg, (1)
- 17. ALMANDIN (Robert Hickmott), Kerrin McEvoy, 52kg, (17)
- 18. ASSIGN (Robert Hickmott), Katelyn Mallyon, 52kg, (22)
- 19. GREY LION (Matt Cumani), Glen Boss, 52kg, (16)
- 20. OCEANOGRAPHER (Charlie Appleby), Chad Schofield, 52kg, (11)
- 21. SECRET NUMBER (Saeed Bin Suroor), Stephen Baster, 52kg, (10)
- 22 PENTATHLON (John Wheeler), Mark du Plessis, 51.5kg, (4)
- 23. QEWY (Charlie Appleby), Craig Williams, 51.5kg, (15)
- 24. ROSE OF VIRGINIA (Lee & Shannon Hope), Ben Thompson, 51kg, (8)