Champion mare Winx matched the famous Kingston Town by winning three successive Cox Plates – but it wasn’t without a scare or two in the home straight!
Jockey Hugh Bowman let the wonder horse cruise up to her rivals on the home turn but she didn’t put paid to them like she normally would.
Hitting the front at the top of the straight, Humidor burst out of the pack and set out after Winx who had to find something else close to the line to hold off the fast-finishing Darren Weir-trained runner.
Congratulations to all those punters that took the shorts about the mare to get the job done and for those brave souls that took as much as $4 (with TAB) for her to win the race immediately after he win in the 2016 edition. Twelve months is a long time to wait to get paid but for a horse like her and value like that, it’s definitely worth it!
Of the beaten brigade, Humidor was the standout while Folkswood battled on gamely after racing outside the leader Gailo Chop to grab the minor end of the prize.
There were no major movements in the Victoria Derby market following Saturday’s racing.
CLIFF’S EDGE and ROYAL SYMPHONY did tighten up slightly to be $5 equal favourites with most bookies but Ladbrokes has the latter as $4.50 top pick.
Cliff’s Edge was backing up after his brilliant win at Caulfield and led them a merry dance in the Vase, however, was blown away by top filly Aloisia to finish a clear second best. Can he back up a third straight week in the Derby’s grueling 2500 metres?
Royal Symphony was considered to be one of the most likely challengers to test Winx in the Cox Plate but after racing back in the field, couldn’t get into the race and finished fourth. Just how much that took out of him is anyone’s guess.
HUMIDOR has roared into Melbourne Cup calculations following his outstanding second to Winx in the Cox Plate yesterday.
Most corporates had him at around $26 but Sportsbet were offering $34 after his tough Caulfield Cup run last week. Backing up after that effort didn’t seem to hinder the Darren Weir runner as he flashed home to scare Winx, and most of Australia, in the home straight.
Bet365 have him at $8 to win the race that stops the nation while you can still secure $9.20 on Betfair. Those prices are good enough to have him only behind Almandin as favourite for the great race.
The other notable firmer yesterday was veteran galloper WHO SHOT THEBARMAN after his surprise win in the Moonee Valley Gold Cup.
Chris Waller’s popular horse upset the apple cart as most were with Big Duke in the race, however, Blake Shinn timed his run perfectly as he swept around the field and finished off powerfully to record a great win. Big Duke, meanwhile, is still trying to find clear running.
Who Shot Thebarman was around the $61 mark prior to the effort but is now into $34 (Bet365). Big Duke is $26.
ALOISIA has really come of age and is now the one to beat in the Oaks.
She simply toyed with the males in the Vase at Moonee Valley yesterday and relished the 2040 metres with the extra distance of the Oaks definitely not looking like a hindrance.
Most bookies reacted immediately after the impressive nature of the win by firming her up from $2.50 into an odds-on favourite. William Hill is currently offering $1.75 about her chances.
HEY DOC more than halved his quote to win the feature sprint down the Flemington straight after his all-the-way in the Manikato Stakes on Friday night.
The Tony McEvoy-trained runner was as much as $34 prior to that effort but has tumbled into $10 (William Hill) following the effort.
TAB Everest winner Redzel is still favourite at $4 but the run of IN HER TIME in finishing second to Hey Doc didn’t go unnoticed – she is now second elect at $5.50.
The other notable firmer from Friday’s sprint was MALAGUERRA ($19-$13) after he was luckless in running but still managed to finish third.
Favourite Vega Magic was disappointing and is now $6.50 with Will Hill to win the Darley while CHAUTAUQUA, scratched the barriers on Friday, is still an $8 chance.
Punters should note that Team Hawkes had a vet check of their champion immediately returning home on Friday night, which subsequently found nothing wrong with the ‘Grey Flash’