Caulfield Cup winning mare Jameka continues to firm in the betting for the Group 1 $6m Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington next Tuesday.
The Ciaron Maher trained Jameka has firmed in a $1 over the last twenty-four hours to be $5.50 second favourite behind Cox Plate runner up Hartnell.
Jameka has had plenty of supporters and is starting to really challenge Hartnell who holds the top spot in the market order at $4.60.
Jameka confirmed herself as one of the main betting chances for the Melbourne Cup with an emphatic three lengths win over Godolphin’s English stayer Scottish in the Group 1 $3m BMW Caulfield Cup (2400m) at Caulfield on October 15.
The Caulfield Cup win earned Jameka a 1.5kg penalty which lifted her Melbourne Cup weight to 53.5kg but that will be raised another 1kg at final acceptance time when the joint top weights Big Orange and Our Ivanhowe, weighted on 56kg, will have their weights raised to 57kg to fulfil the race conditions for the Melbourne Cup, meaning all the weights will be raised 1kg.
Maher said that Jameka has developed into a strong mature mare and is not too concerned that she will have to carry the 54.5kg in ‘The Race That Stops A Nation’.
“No worries there,” Maher told Moody On The Mic.
“She has always been ahead of her age in terms of strength and maturity and as a four year old mare she has really let down into that open class horse.”
The John O’Shea trained Hartnell is having his second attempt at winning the Melbourne Cup and goes into this year’s race in much better form than last year when he finished fifteenth to Prince Of Penzance.
Prior to getting beaten by eight lengths last start when second to Winx in the Group 1 $3m Cox Plate (2040m) at Moonee Valley last Saturday, Hartnell had strung together a Spring Carnival hat trick of wins.
After a first up second to Winx in the Group 2 $250,000 Warwick Stakes (1400m) at Randwick on August 20, Hartnell scored the first of his three wins in the Group 2 $250,000 Tattersalls Club Chelmsford Stakes (1600m) at Randwick on September 3 and then repeated that winning performance in the Group 2 $200,000 Ascend Sales Trophies Hill Stakes (2000m) at Randwick on September 17.
O’Shea then headed to Melbourne with Hartnell who went on his winning way with a three and a quarter lengths victory in the Group 1 $500,000 Yellowglen Turnbull Stakes (2000m) at Flemington on October 2.
The Aidan O’Brien trained Irish stayer Bondi Beach remains steady on the third line of betting at $10 just ahead of Irish hurdler Heartbreak City at $11.
The Tony Martin trained Heartbreak City mixes his racing on the flat and over the jumps with wins at his last three starts and after winning twice over the hurdles scored a win on the flat in the £280,000 Ebor Heritage Handicap (1 mile, 6 furlongs) at York in England on August 20.
Early Melbourne Cup market order at Ladbrokes.com.au: $4.60 Hartnell, $5.50 Jameka, $10 Bondi Beach, $11 Heartbreak City $13 Almandin, $17 Big Orange, Wicklow Brave, Exospheric, $18 Almoonqith, $21 Oceanographer, $26 Curren Mirotic, Who Shot Thebarman, Qewy, Secret Number, $31 Grand Marshall, Grey Lion, Our Ivanhowe, Real Love, Beautiful Romance, Tom Melbourne, $51 Gallante, Assign, Excess Knowledge, $61 Tally, Howard Be Thy Name, De Little Engine, Sir John Hawkwood, $81 Vengeur Masque, $101, Pentathlon, $301 Rose Of Virginia, The Bandit.