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Stablemates Almandin and Aloft will line up against each other in peak condition in Saturday’s Group 1 $2m Schweppes Sydney Cup (3200m) on day two of The Champions at Randwick.

Almandin, above, will be in peak condition for the 2018 Sydney Cup at Randwick. Photo by Steve Hart.

Almandin, above, will be in peak condition for the 2018 Sydney Cup at Randwick. Photo by Steve Hart.

Four times Sydney Cup winning owner Lloyd Williams can’t fault the condition of his stayers Almandin and Aloft on the eve of the feature two miler over the 2018 Sydney Autumn Carnival.

Williams has won four Sydney Cups with Major Drive (1987), Gallic (2007), Mourayan (2013) and Gallante (2016) and has a great chance to add to his tally the $3.90 favourite Almandin and Aloft who is on the third line of betting at $7.50 with Ladbrokes.com.au.

“We’ve still got a few days to go until the race and I can’t fault either horse but only the good Lord knows whether they can win,’’ Williams told The Daily Telegraph.

“I can’t have Almandin and Aloft any fitter or going any better into the Sydney Cup.”

Almandin has already proven his staying ability with a win in the 2016 Group 1 $6m Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington and wrapped up his Sydney Cup preparation with a win in the Group 1 $1.5m Kia Tancred Stakes (2400m) at Rosehill on March 31.

Almandin has drawn barrier five in the capacity twenty horse Sydney Cup field with Damien Oliver in the saddle replacing Tancred Stakes winning jockey Kerrin McEvoy.

McEvoy will still have a ride for Williams and trainer Liam Howley and will partner Aloft who has drawn awkwardly at barrier thirteen.

Aloft will also go into the Sydney Cup with winning form following his victory in the Listed $120,000 3AW Roy Higgins Quality (2600m) at Flemington on March 3 and the ssix year old gelding is also a proven stayer with a win over two miles in England before being claimed by Williams and his Team at Macedon Lodge.

About The Author

Mark Mazzaglia

Mark is a passionate journalist with a life-time involvement in the racing industry. He spent many years as an analyst and form expert at the Courier Mail and also has hands-on experience working with some of Queensland’s top trainers.

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