Last year’s Melbourne Cup winner Almandin heads up the twenty-four nominations for the Group 3 $300,000 The Bart Cummings (2500m) at Flemington on Saturday.
The Robert Hickmott trained, Lloyd Williams owned Almandin won last year’s The Bart Cummings before going on to win the 2016 Group 1 $6m Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington.
The European import is on track to make it back to back Melbourne Cup wins with two outstanding runs from his 2017 Spring Carnival outings.
Almandin resumed from a spell to flash home for a second placing to Pacodali in a 2040m Handicap at The Valley on August 26 and then went to win the Listed $120,000 Japan Racing Association Trophy (2500m) at Flemington on September 16.
Three times Melbourne Cup winning jockey Damien Oliver was on board Almandin in the Japan Racing Association Trophy win and will hold the reins again this weekend.
“At this point Almandin is likely to have his next run in Bart Cummings this Saturday at Flemington,” part owner Nick Williams tweeted.
Almandin has seven stablemates among the nominations for The Bart Cummings, Bondi Beach, Assign, Gallante, Amralah, Aloft, Crocodile Rock and Granddukeoftuscany but at this stage the stable is uncertain how many final runners they will have.
The winner of The Bart Cummings is exempt from the ballot for the Melbourne Cup and an in-form horse like Harlem who is well down in the Melbourne Cup weights would gain an automatic start in ‘The Race That Stops A Nation’ on the first Tuesday of November.
Harlem has already secured a place in the Group 1 $3.15m BMW Caulfield Cup (2400m) at Caulfield on October 21 with a win in the ballot free Group 3 $150,000 Bendigo Bank East Malvern MRC Foundation Cup (Naturalism Stakes) (2000m) at Caulfield on September 23.
As well as Harlem, the Lindsay Park Team of David and Ben Hayes and Tom Dabernig have also nominated Ventura Storm, Harlow Gold and Fanatic for The Bart Cummings.
Victoria’s leading trainer Darren Weir has three entries for The Bart Cummings, Amelie’s Star, Kellstorm and Yogi.
Nominations for the 2017 The Bart Cummings (2500m)
|#||Last 10||Horse||Sex||Age||Trainer||Ballot||Weight||Hcp Rating|
|1||x665111x21||ALMANDIN (GER)||G||8||Robert Hickmott||1||60kg||112|
|2||01121x5x76||VENTURA STORM (IRE)||H||5||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||2||58kg||106|
|4||x11x330x90||BONDI BEACH (IRE)||G||6||Robert Hickmott||4||57kg||104|
|5||x9210x71x0||ASSIGN (IRE)||G||7||Robert Hickmott||5||57kg||104|
|6||x4214x8394||AMELIE’S STAR||M||6||Darren Weir||6||54.5kg||103|
|7||384x386x51||HARLEM (GB)||H||6||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||7||56.5kg||103|
|8||x031x270x0||GALLANTE (IRE)||G||7||Robert Hickmott||8||55.5kg||101|
|9||0x0D71x000||AMRALAH (IRE)||H||8||Robert Hickmott||9||55.5kg||101|
|10||7x39x12x13||ALOFT (IRE)||G||6||Robert Hickmott||10||55kg||100|
|11||65123×8135||BROADSIDE (NZ)||G||6||Gai Waterhouse & Adrian Bott||11||54kg||98|
|12||1x75459x70||KINEMA (IRE)||G||7||Chris Waller||12||54kg||97|
|13||x34340x468||HARLOW GOLD (NZ)||M||4||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||13||54kg||93|
|14||9x97860x04||PENTATHLON (NZ)||G||6||John Wheeler||14||54kg||93|
|15||184260×504||FANATIC (NZ)||M||5||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||15||54kg||90|
|16||482x542x99||VENGEUR MASQUE (IRE)||G||6||Michael Moroney||16||54kg||90|
|17||1x1x21x322||CROCODILE ROCK (IRE)||G||6||Robert Hickmott||17||54kg||87|
|18||9×17351116||KELLSTORM (IRE)||H||5||Darren Weir||18||54kg||86|
|19||168×211314||YOGI (NZ)||G||5||Darren Weir||19||54kg||84|
|21||4051421427||SUPER HAZE (IRE)||G||6||Tony McEvoy||21||54kg||82|
|22||410910×002||SLY ROMANCE (NZ)||G||6||Richard Laming||22||54kg||78|
|23||x9x5644276||GRANDDUKEOFTUSCANY (IRE)||G||7||Robert Hickmott||23||54kg||74|
|24||x900937096||CRAFTY CRUISER||G||10||Bryce Stanaway||24||54kg||70|