There are 13 horses preparing for an 11 hour attack in order to take a position in the 2011 $6m Group 1 Melbourne Cup (3200m)on Tuesday.
Twelve of the 13 will run in the $251,000 Group 3 Lexus Stakes (2500m) and one in the $1m Group 1 Mackinnon Stakes (2000m) both run at Flemington on Saturday.
Both races would make the winners exempt from Melbourne Cup ballot and give them the perfect form going into the Cup.
Vying for a Melbourne Cup berth include Lexus favourite Green Moon who is 35th in the Melbourne Cup order of entry.
The Caulfield Cup runner up is joined by Tullamore, Moyenne Corniche, Niwot, Galizani, Raffaello, Showcause, Macedonian, Midnight Martini, Spechenka, Anudjawun and Reprisal all still in the Cup but not in the top 24 in the order of entry.
Tullamore is 25th in the Cup order and with the likely scratching of Sahara Sun who is 24th is already in the Cup field but a win by one of the above will push the Gai Waterhouse trained galloper back out.
And if none of them are able to do it, The Verminator in the Mackinnon, though remote, just might.
The Chris Waller trained galloper is a $61 chance in the event and Waller will be hoping that by Saturday afternoon the attrition rate of the Cup field picks up and he gets a run.
The Verminator is currently 26th in the Cup order of entry.