An outstanding field has been assembled here for the $2million feature with a number of Group One winners engaged including HAPPY CLAPPER, IT'S SOMEWHAT, GAILO CHOP, TOSEN STARDOM and GINGERNUTS all capable of taking this out.
The youngest horse in the field but heads into the race with just 51kgs on his back. Cliff's Edge was brilliant in winning the Norman Robinson two starts ago over this same distance before playing second fiddle to a filly called Aloisia in the Vase at Moonee Valley. One of three runners for Darren Weir in the race, Cliff's Edge is likely to lead or sit just behind the pace, and with almost no weight on his back, is definitely the one to beat.
Charlie Appleby's stable runner has been low flying in his two Australian runs. First-up from the United Kingdom, Folkswood was simply a class above in winning the Cranbourne Cup before putting in a Herculean performance to run third to Winx in the Cox Plate. Appleby has a proven record in Australia, especially at this time of the year (remember Francis Of Assisi and Oceanographer?) and is definitely one of the main contenders here.
The Kiwi has already won three Group Ones in 12 career starts. A winner of the Rosehill Guineas in the Autumn, Gingernuts won the Windsor Park at Group One level two starts ago on September 23 and appears to have come back just as good, if not better, than last season. This appears to be right up his alley and the 2000 metres suits.
Is this the day he finally breaks through for his Group One? The Chris Waller-trained runner has been a perennial placegetter in the big ones throughout his career, however, it has always been a very good horse that has knocked him off. The seven-year-old is low flying at the moment and has finished second in two Group Ones at his past three starts. The latest of those was last week in the Cantala behind stablemate Shillelagh. Will run a huge race again with the only query being has he run his Grand Final already?
The TAB Epsom winner is unlucky not to have had a few more Group Ones under his belt but that’s been thanks to a horse called Winx. The gelding has finished runner-up to the champion mare twice at the highest level and has been second in two Doncasters as well. Ran sixth in the Cox Plate a few weeks back and if he’s come through that okay is definitely worth a few dollars here.
I am keen on CLIFF’S EDGE here. He gets weight relief, loves the 2000 metres, and is likely to be on the speed throughout and that could be a huge advantage at Flemington on Saturday. The form behind Aloisia is first rate over this distance. FOLKSWOOD is the logical quinella horse while HAPPY CLAPPER and TOM MELBOURNE are definitely capable of running a hole too.