Melbourne Cup Preview 2018

Melbourne Cup preview by Roy The Boy and he is going for Caulfield Cup winner Best Solution.

Best is still the Solution in a soft ground Melbourne Cup

There’s a 90 percent chance of rain in Melbourne on Monday and that also goes for Tuesday.  In short, we can expect the 2018 Melbourne Cup to be raced on a track described, in some part at least, as ‘soft’.

Two miles and 24 runners …this could become a total lottery but finding the stayers that go on a soft surface will surely help your chances and to that end I immediately identified the former French-trained Avilius as a major runner.  He’s fathered by Pivitol a sire renowned for soft-ground performers.  He has won four times from five starts ‘down under’ only tasting defeat against Winx in last week’s Cox Plate.  But hold up, he’s never been beyond 1m 4f and I did say Pivitol.  He’s better known for milers and his stamina index of 8F underlines that.

So after much head scratching I’ve reverted to our old friend Best Solution (tipped here to win the Cox Cup at 16/1) for Saeed bin Suroor and the under-rated Pat Cosgrove.  He’s been given a penalty for that Group 1 race win but he won despite a poor stall draw and slow start.  11 previous Cox Cup winners have won the Melbourne Cup, the most recent being Ethereal in 2011.  But, most importantly, he’s a Group 3 winner on the ‘soft’ at Newbury and his last two victories have come on ground described as ‘good to soft’.

Lay the jolly

If he’s a strong each-way fancy Aidan O’Brien’s 4/1 favourite Yucatan is an even better place-lay.  He’s got that price for winning impressively in a 1m-4f Group 2 handicap (yes handicap) at Caulfield in mid-October. Weight-wise he was ‘well-in’ then but delve into his form and you cannot have this horse, who was winless for almost two years since taking a tin-pot race in August 2016, for love ‘nor money.

The Group 3 Yucatan landed at the Curragh in July 2018 was ‘tin-pot’ by normal standards and although his career high was finishing second in the 2017 Derrinstown Stud Derby Trial it’s noteworthy the race winner there, Douglas Macarthur, never made the frame of another race.

Recommended Bets

Best Solution                                                          12/1                                        Boyles

Yucatan                     LAY for a place currently      2.7 (places 1-2-3)                 Betfair