Lexus Stakes winner Oceanographer has been given a 1kg penalty for the Group 1 $6m Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington on Tuesday.
The Charlie Appleby trained Oceanographer gained an automatic spot in the final twenty-four for the Melbourne Cup with a come from behind win in the Group 3 $300,000 Lexus Stakes (2500m) at Flemington today.
The 1kg penalty will push Oceanographer’s weight up to 52kg and lightweight Hong Kong based jockey Chad Schofield has been booked to ride.
The English stayer was having his second run in Australia after finishing third to stablemate Qewy in the Group 3 $300,000 Geelong Cup (2400m) at Geelong on October 19 and Appleby will have two Melbourne Cup runners with Qewy also qualified to run.
Craig Williams will don the Godolphin royal blue colours when he rides Qwey on Tuesday.
Appleby had no hesitation in announcing that Oceanographer would take his place in the Melbourne Cup on Tuesday after Kerrin McEvoy produced a well timed run to nail the front runner Tom Melbourne a few strides from the finish post.
“Kerrin has given him a fantastic ride,” Appleby said.
“He went out there and basically told us what he was going to do and I said we aren’t going to tell him what to do because he is on fire.
“I thought that the track would suit him more so than Geelong – at Geelong he just lost his balance coming around the turn.
“We can go and have another day on Tuesday.
“He has taken it all very well and he is thriving out here.
“We will get him back, we will freshen him up as much as we can and we look forward to Tuesday.”
Oceanographer has firmed in dramatically in Melbourne Cup betting at Ladbrokes.com.au and after $21 was offer this morning is now equal $7.50 third favourite behind the John O’Shea trained Hartnell ($4.80) who will also carry the Godolphin royal blue colours and Caulfield Cup winner Jameka at $7.