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Melbourne Cup 2017: Tony Brassel - Why It Can Win

 Nov 6 2017

1. HARTNELL (12) Won't have to worry about striking his nemesis Winx this time! Running third in last year's Cup is a terrific wrap.

2. ALMANDIN (14) Running first in last year's Cup is even better than a terrific wrap. So is the name Williams in his ownership.

3. HUMIDOR (13) Gave Winx 2kg and a wee fright in the Cox Plate. That's the best form of the Spring and absolutely loves Flemington.

4. TIBERIAN (23) French stayers have figured prominently in several Cups and pacy enough to cross from his wide marble. Durable.

5. MARMELO (16) Traditionally the number one Cup pointer is the Caulfield Cup. And the number one eye-catcher was Hugh Bowman's English mount.

6. RED CARDINAL (24) His rider Kerrin McEvoy has landed two Cups, both from very wide barriers. Two from two is Red's 3200m scoresheet.

7. JOHANNES VERMEER (3) Placed in both Aussie Group 1 lead-ups and a touch unlucky in the Caulfield Cup. Won't cover a skerrick of extra ground from this gate.

8. BONDI BEACH (1) Team Williams again. Hasn't won for 18 months but drawn to switch off early like he did in 2016. Big question is, can he switch on in 2017?

9. MAX DYNAMITE (2) Unlucky second in the 2015 Cup. He's endowed with a tidy gear change as shown in his last start win three months ago. Tougher foes now.

10. VENTURA STORM (6) Neat draw a positive and the Caulfield circuit didn't suit when rolled in that Cup. Assess on previous strong form around Winx and Humidor.

11. WHO SHOT THEBARMAN (20) SCRATCHED - Won't get sighted.

12. WICKLOW BRAVE (8) Well beaten in the 2016 Cup but reportedly working well. Last win was a hurdle but seven time winner over 3200m.

13. BIG DUKE (5) Boxed in when fourth at Moonee Valley last start. Accelerates better than most 3200m horses and prep has unfolded a treat.

14. US ARMY RANGER (22) Career best was a super second in the 2016 Epsom Derby. Member of the Williams force - could spring some shock and awe.

15. BOOM TIME 9 Went 'boom' to take the Caulfield Cup and has won two of his three Flemington starts. Query over 3200m but as fit as any runner.

16. GALLANTE (18) Arguably the weak link in the Team Williams collection after two plugging runs this prep. Won the 2016 Sydney Cup over 3200m.

17. LIBRAN (7) Has worked home keenly in recent starts so could be a solid roughie. Only runner for one of the nation's top stables - Team Waller.

18. NAKEETA (19) Typical UK raider off a light foundation. Scottish-trained, he last raced 10 weeks ago when snaring Europe's richest handicap, the Ebor. 

19. SINGLE GAZE (11) Eclipsed all previous 26 runs when a tenacious Caulfield Cup second. Uncharted territory over 3200m but she's pretty game. And pretty.

20. WALL OF FIRE (15) About time he turned up in Australia after galivanting around the UK, USA and Dubai. Jetted into second at Caulfield - has instantly acclimatised

21. THOMAS HOBSON (21) Arguably the world's best rider, Joao Moreira chased the ride on this tough Irish stayer. Joao could go one better than 2016's close second.

22. REKINDLING (4) May well have the wood on the other Williams runners after a bold fourth in the English St. Leger (2900m). A1 draw and pilot already a Cup winner.

23. AMELIE'S STAR (10) Out of her comfort zone when ridden forward in the Caulfield Cup. Tactics failed and a cooler, patient plan could prove fruitful.

24. CISMONTANE (17) Snuck into the Cup with Saturday's gutsy 2500m win. Probable leader and Beau Mertens ranks among our finest young riders.


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Tony Brassel - Sky Racing


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