2019 Melbourne Cup analysis – runner by runner

November 5, 2019 | By More
2019 Melbourne Cup analysis
Find the winner of the Melbourne Cup using our runner-by-runner analysis

The Melbourne Cup is the race that stops the nation and viewed by millions of people world-wide. First run in 1861, the Melbourne Cup is indelibly linked in the Australian psyche for over 150 years. The Melbourne Cup is an Australian institution so finding the winner is an important national challenge, up there with singing the national anthem and reciting Banjo Patterson. Therefore, to help you find the Melbourne Cup winner, here is our runner-by-runner analysis of Australia’s greatest sporting event. If you’d like to make a bet on your favourite horse, simply join our preferred online bookmaker, make a suitable deposit and start betting.

1. Cross Counter – 57.5kg (5)

Trainer: Charles Appleby
Jockey: William Buick

An elite two-miler who returns to defend his crown. Up 6.5kgs from last year, however reported to be bigger and stronger this time. Won the G2 Dubai Gold Cup but tempo didn’t suit in the Irish St Leger. Previous runs, finished a couple of lengths off leading European stayer Stradivarius in the G1 Ascot Gold Cup and G1 Goodwood Cup. Quality two-miler with a huge chance if he can carry the weight.

2. Mer De Glace – 56kg (2)

Trainer: Hisahi Shimizu
Jockey: Damian Lane

Winner of the Caulfield Cup 2400m, but untried over the two miles. Damien Lane will be hoping to take up a position from barrier 2 and send the horse to sleep for a lap before unleashing a sustained finishing effort. Sure to be Japan fit. No doubt he has the quality to win, after his dominant Caulfield Cup victory. However, he’s running 3200m for the first time and may also be disadvantaged by the state of the track.

3. Master Of Reality – 55.5kg (1)

Trainer: Joseph O’brien
Jockey: Frankie Dettori

Frankie Dettori rides this son of Frankel. Form this year has been top notch. Finished in front of Cross Counter in the Ascot Gold Cup. One-paced stayer but could pinch it if left alone. Frankie a superb judge of pace. Outside chance.

4. Mirage Dancer – 55.5kg (13)

Trainer: Trent Busuttin & Natalie Young
Jockey: Ben Melham

Stable confidence high on this son of Frankel. Given a nice ride by Ben Melham in the Caulfield Cup, battling on strongly to run a place. That was probably his chance at a feature in Melbourne and can’t see him taking out the big one. Has won once from 4 starts second up and has never run at 3200m. Will run well but the winner’s circle may be a mirage.

5. Southern France 55.5kg (14)

Trainer: Ciaron Maher & David Eustace
Jockey: Mark Zahra

Beautifully-bred Irish stayer from Aidan O’Brien’s yard and now in the hands of Ciaron Maher and David Eustace. Beat Cross Counter in last year’s English St Leger. Too good for last Saturday’s winner Downdraft in the Irish St Leger Trial. Failed in only attempt at 2 miles in the Goodwood Cup. Ridden by Ryan Moore in the UK but Ryan chose to ride Magic Wand in The Cup. Two miles the concern. Form a bit up and down, but his last run gives him some hope here. Will enjoy wet track conditions and drawn to get a good run, with cover.

6. Hunting Horn – 55kg (11)

Trainer: Aidan O’brien
Jockey: Seamie Heffernan

Brought to Australia by Aidan O’Brien and brilliantly won the G2 Moonee Valley Cup to essentially pay for his trip. Used as pacemaker in Europe, so watch for interesting race strategy. Showed his ability last start when ridden to win. Form in the highest grade of races is fine. How good is the MV Cup form? Drawn well, handles the soft conditions.

7. Latrobe – 55kg (22)

Trainer: Joseph O’brien
Jockey: James Mcdonald

2018 Irish Derby winner trained by Joseph O’Brien. Ran 2nd in the Curragh Cup by a neck to Twilight Payment. Untried over two miles. Form is quite good, but has a few things against him. The barrier, distance and the fact that he is a little too close in weight to some who have beaten him home in Europe. If he can run the 3200, might be a top six hope. 

8. Mustajeer – 55kg (6)

Trainer: Kris Lees
Jockey: Damien Oliver

Won a top class Ebor (2800m) at York in August. Ran on well in the Caulfield Cup, coming from 16th at half-way point and finishing only 2 lengths off the winner. Damian Oliver is having a terrific Spring Carnival. Better suited at Flemington and loves soft conditions. If ridden quietly and presented at the right time, he can win. Francesca’s tip.

9. Rostropovich – 55kg (12)

Trainer: David & Ben Hayes & Tom Dabernig
Jockey: Dwayne Dunn

Fifth in last year’s Melbourne Cup with 51kg, but hasn’t recaptured form. Ran upside down in Caulfield Cup. Will run out the 3200m and handle the conditions. Music in the ears of the Hayes camp if he can do it.

10. Twilight Payment – 55kg (19)

Trainer: Joseph O’brien
Jockey: Hugh Bowman

Won Curragh Cup over 2800m beating Latrobe, Southern France and Mustajeer. Progressive type, which is what you need. Natural on-pacer who has won over 3200m. Form good around Southern France, Master of Reality and others. Set for this race. Near faultless wet track form. Hugh Bowman on board, definitely a winning hope.

11. Finche – 54kg (4)

Trainer: Chris Waller
Jockey: Kerrin McEvoy

Ran 4th in last year’s Melbourne Cup and since been gelded. Strong 2nd in the Turnbull Stakes. Good 5th in Caulfield Cup after being 3-wide without cover. Strong chance and pushing for favouritism in the race. Magnificent chestnut with a giant stride, not many chinks in this guy’s armour. Handles the track, has run well at 3200m before, and has had a very good prep. His run when wide without cover early at Caulfield was excellent. Kerrin McEvoy knows a thing or two about winning The Cup. Excellent hope.

12. Prince Of Arran – 54kg (8)

Trainer: Charlie Fellowes
Jockey: Michael Walker

A gallant 3rd in last year’s race after winning the Hotham. Recent Geelong Cup win shows he’s back to his best. His European form is underwhelming but seems to love Australia, as you would. Last two runs here superb. Good win in fast time at Geelong, carrying weight. Drops 4kg for this race. Soft track may be a concern.

13. Raymond Tusk – 54kg (3)

Trainer: Richard Hannon
Jockey: Jamie Spencer

Proven 2-miler. Flew home in the Ebor behind Mustajeer. Really eye-catching. Drops 7kg in weight from his Ebor run. He is a little inferior in class to some of the other internationals but meets them better at the weights, and can run 3200m. Could surprise.

14. Downdraft – 53.5kg (15)

Trainer: Joseph O’brien
Jockey: John Allen

Won the 2500m Hotham Hcp last Saturday and drops 5.5kgs for this. Unproven over 2 miles but shapes nicely for the distance. His win in the Hotham showed that he is progressing, but the short backup again is a concern. The short backup has been done before and was the Bart Cummings formula back in the day.

15. Magic Wand – 53.5kg (24)

Trainer: Aidan O’brien
Jockey: Ryan Moore

5YO mare who ran 4th in the Cox Plate after leading the field, stuck on strongly. Fiorente and Green Moon came through the Cox Plate to win the Cup. Ryan Moore chose to ride this mare over other horses. Has the class, but distance and track conditions may have her struggling.

16. Neufbosc – 53.5kg (23)

Trainer: David & Ben Hayes & Tom Dabernig
Jockey: Luke Nolen

Form has been underwhelming and can’t see him getting in the frame. Hard to find any positive points in his form. Drawn poorly, and his last run means he must improve six lengths to get near Prince Of Arran. More like a nerf bomb than a bosc.

17. Sound – 53.5kg (10)

Trainer: Mike Moroney
Jockey: James Winks

Not a bad run in the Caulfield Cup after being forced wide. Hasn’t proven over the trip and beaten 28 lengths last year. He’d need to improve on that! There’s a good race in this horse, but not this time. Will love the soft conditions, his last run was okay without being outstanding and drops in weight from the Caulfield Cup.

18. Surprise Baby – 53.5kg (20)

Trainer: Paul Preusker
Jockey: Jordan Childs

The Bart Cummings (2500m) winner, given entry into the race. Drops 3.5kgs for The Cup. Adelaide Cup winner and is by Melbourne Cup winner Shocking. Light weight local hope. Loves the 3200m, has not carried this low weight since he won the Adelaide Cup where he donkey-licked a horse who came out last week and won the Bendigo Cup. Loves the course and has had perfect preparation. Barrier a concern, but if he gets the run he can surprise, baby.

19. Constantinople – 53.5kg (7)

Trainer: David & Ben Hayes & Tom Dabernig
Jockey: Joao Moreira

Following the same path as Cross Counter last year. Handicapper still hasn’t woken up to this progressive UK 3YO profile. However, UK form analysts would be surprised to find him favourite for the Melbourne Cup. Second-placed in the Great Voltigeur before trip to Australia. Found interference in the Caulfield Cup but did well to finish 4th. With Joao “Magic Man” Moreira on board, anything is possible. He’s no turkey, that’s for sure.

20. Il Paradiso – 52.5kg (17)

Trainer: David & Ben Hayes & Tom Dabernig
Jockey: Jye McNeil

Another lightly-weighted Northern Hemisphere 3YO, like Rekindling and Cross Counter. Strong two-mile form already. Third in the Lonsdale Cup at York behind Stradivarius and Dee Ex Bee is as good as you can get. Pace didn’t suit in English St Leger. This horse follows the pattern set by the last two winners of The Cup. Serious chance!

21. Steel Prince – 52.5kg (16)

Trainer: Anthony Freedman
Jockey: Brett Prebble

Got into the Cup by winning the Andrew Ramsden qualifier. A couple of mishaps have put him behind in preparation. Distance a concern but incredible will-to-win is sure to help. Loves Flemington.

22. The Chosen One – 52kg (18)

Trainer: Murray Baker & Andrew Forsman
Jockey: Tim Clark

Won the Herbert Power but has failed since. Unproven at distance greater than 2400m but Hotham run tops him off nicely. Soft track form is good. Not my chosen one but each to their own.

23. Vow And Declare – 52kg (21)

Trainer: Danny O’brien
Jockey: Craig Williams

Natural stayer who ran a strong 2nd in Caulfield Cup after difficult run. Hugely impressive in the Turnbull. Sure to be at home on the huge expanses of Flemington. Will love 3200m. Strong local chance. Prefers a dry track. Wide barrier but super jockey. How does local form stack up against the internationals?

24. Youngstar – 52kg (9)

Trainer: Chris Waller
Jockey: Tommy Berry

Queensland Oaks winner who has not had a lot of luck since. Ran sixth last year and will relish the trip. Died-in-the-wool stayer and gets her chance. Handles soft ground, drawn beautifully, top jockey aboard.

2019 Melbourne Cup punting advice

Study the lead-up form of previous winners. These will undoubtedly provide key pointers as to what to look for in the Melbourne Cup form guide. Also think about futures betting for next year’s Cup. Who is likely to be a winning chance with more maturity and form progression. A good Melbourne Cup analyst follows the relevant form, all year round. For the complete newbie, take a look at our quick guide to the Melbourne Cup 2020. It will get you pumped for next year’s edition.

Comments by the Mayor of Thoroughbred Village.

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Category: Horse Racing, Melbourne Cup

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