The Chris Waller trained pair of Preferment and Sacred Master have been announced as non runners for the Group 1 $6m Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington on November 1.
Waller released a statement on twitter this morning outlining the Spring Carnival plans for Preferment who will now be freshened up and aimed towards the old Mackinnon Stakes, the Group 1 $2m Emirates Stakes (2000m) at Flemington on November 5, while Sacred Master will be sent for a spell before being prepared for the 2017 Autumn Carnival.
“Preferment will not contest the Melbourne Cup and instead be freshened up with purpose of directing his campaign towards the G1 Emirates Stakes (Mackinnon) over 2000m on November 5.
“A final decision will be made based on his progress over the coming 7 days.
“Sacred Master will not contest the Melbourne Cup and instead will be spelled and prepared for an Autumn 2017 campaign,” Waller tweeted.
Preferment finished twentieth in the 2015 Melbourne Cup behind Prince Of Penzance but regained his best form with two wins during the 2016 Autumn Carnival with a victory in the Group 1 $1m Australian Cup (2000m) at Flemington followed by a win in the Group 1 $1.5m The BMW (2400m) at Rosehill.
But the Zabeel five year old has struggled to find any good form this Spring and has missed a place from four runs with his latest being an eleventh to Jameka in the Group 1 $3m BMW Caulfield Cup (2400m) at Caulfield last Saturday.
Former Kiwi trained Sacred Master showed some good early Spring Carnival form with a win in the Group 3 $175,000 XXXX Gold Newcastle Cup (2200m) on the Beaumont track at Newcastle on September 16 but was always well back last start when fifteenth in the Caulfield Cup.
Waller has Who Shot Thebarman and Grand Marshall still in contention for the Melbourne Cup with both stayers down to run in the Group 2 $300,000 Antler Luggage Moonee Valley Gold Cup (2500m) at Moonee Valley on Saturday.
Who Shot Thebarman is one of the top fancies in the Moonee Valley Gold Cup at $4.50 with Ladbrokes.com.au and is a $41 chance in the Melbourne Cup while Grand Marshal is marked at $17 for Saturday’s race and is a $61 chance for the ‘Race That Stops A Nation’.
Early Melbourne Cup market order at Ladbrokes.com.au: $5 Hartnell, $6.50 Jameka, $10 Bondi Beach, Almandin, $11 Heartbreak City, $15 Big Orange, Exospheric, $17 Wicklow Brave, $19 Almoonqith, $21 Curren Mirotic, Gallante, Oceanographer, Qewy, $26 Beautiful Romance, Grey Lion, $31 Scottish, Our Ivanhowe, Real Love, $41 Excess Knowledge, Second Wave, Who Shot Thebarman, $51 or more the rest.
Second declarations for the 2016 Melbourne Cup will be taken at 10am (AEDT) on Monday, 24 October 2016.