Monday, November 5, 2018



So, Yucatan… For realsies? 

PROFESSOR: I’m not sure, but betting is a numbers game, and while I might get $7/$8 for a Yucatan win, to me there is a 25 per cent chance that Yucatan is for real, and we see one of the most dominant cup wins of the last decade. So on that basis, I guess I think Yukes is more real than the general public as I will be betting on it. And barriers are irrelevant to me over two miles. J Mc is the premiere jockey in the country and I trust that between he and Lloyd there will be a plan to mitigate it.

MASTER O: Yucatan is big unders. I've seen a lot of horses run cracking 2400m races.  This by no means guarantees that it gets 3200m. A recent example being Jameka. He has a terrible gate (can't fathom why the Professor doesn't see potentially getting posted 4, 5, 6 wide the trip as an issue, as fun as that sounds?!?). And what's more he ran distant lasts in back to back races only a few months ago. So untried at the trip, potentially a wide run/or using up some petrol early and recent epic failures and you're giving me Makybe Diva odds? With the recent history of throwing in the towel, this guy might be as "realsies" as a Tomic/Kyrgios doubles pairing.

BIG OL 3PEAT BOMB: Yucatan’s run and turn of foot is nearly the best I’ve seen! Albeit in G3 company...what else do I like? His electric turn of foot, only stars have it... even the carpark barrier will not stop him, and J Mc goes 1 better than Fiorente on his first try. I can’t fathom how or why anyone has a different snorkel bet.... unless they need Specsavers.....

Australia (trained) is a $3.20 chance to win the cup. Is that good value?

PROFESSOR To take this home, your highest horses in the market are Avilius, Youngstar, Finche, Ventura Storm, Sound Check and Runaway. So no, I don’t believe that this is good value. I’m probably higher on Finche and Youngstar than most, but I could back those two and $40 and $20 respectively so that would be the better play.

MASTER O: I don't think so. It's not the 1970's anymore.

BIGOL 3PEAT BOMB: Avilius reminds me of Almandin....I love a WFA race before the Cup (Fiorente). He gets in ok at weights, can he stay? He gets close to the photo for mine. Stifler’s mum shagger Finche is the next best of the above lot, but in answer to the $3.2 question- no terrible value...

What is the “Sizzler horse?” By which I mean the horse who is only being spruiked by idiots, and whose success or failure could help or hinder the business model of Australia’s premiere steak, seafood and salad restaurant.

PROFESSOR: Pour one out for Bart Cummings – with him and his monobrow taking a dirt nap, the mug punter has to do at least five minutes of research. In past years, we’d get a pedestrian B Cummings Lexus winner into $6. Remember Miss Meliss? Geez. Now I’d say that your complete goon is going to see a couple of 6 length wins by Magic Circle, recognise Corey Brown and do his steak, seafood and salad in a misguided afternoon.  
Alternatively, Avilius. In an increasingly European Cup, Avilius is kind of Poland?

MASTER O: Honestly I feel like Yucatan is going to be holding far more money than he should be and his failure would set the casual dining sector back years. And I feel like everyone backing Yucatan will no doubt pour some cash into The Barman as their roughie which I feel is going to have a devastating effect on the sales of "Doubles" tickets at Brisbane Broncos games for season 2019...

BIGOL 3PEAT BOMB: Agree unanimously with the PROF on Magic 6 Length Circle.... on watching his wins I was impressed. But form inspection tells me he is 7, lost to Nakeeta and co., and although we all love an old farts comeback - think Allan Langer smashing the grubs.... I can’t encourage old bald men to get in g bangers....unless there is free musto....On Avilius, well the Prof did not see Almandin coming (unlike yours truly) and I fear he has dropped his dot in a maths model, talking expected gains or opportunity costs of not picking the last 2 Cup winners?,! Go to Sizzler Prof and eat cheese bread o!

What is the horse that’s getting no chatter that you can’t stop talking about?

PROFESSOR: Rostropovich is the obvious one for me. Before the Cox Plate, Rostropovich was close enough to the Cup favourite. After a creditable first up run against Winx, who is above average, we are going to see $50. What did we learn about Rostro in the Cox that would make us abandon ship like that? A couple of things:
·      Bred to stay.
·      Will appreciate the featherweight after it’s last run at WFA.
·      The Cox run pointed to a stayer – remember when a horse running on in the Caulfield Cup was close enough to a guaranteed way to pick your Melbourne Cup horse? Me neither, it hasn’t worked like that since, fuck, Delta Blues?
Master O is going to make the same (reasonable) argument about Marmelo. Hit both.

MASTER O: Yucatan this. Yucatan that. Best Solution and Cliffs great Caulfield Cup runs. Yucatan, Yucatan, Yucatan. Magic Circle’s owner is going to get his kit off when it wins. Yucatan, Lloyd, Yucatan. A Prince Of Arran franks the form! YUCATAN!!!!!!!!!!
And Marmelo, whose 1st up run in Australia last year was good enough to make him Melbourne Cup favourite, first up this year flies under the radar...

That is of course until Lloyd declared it one of the 2 horses he fears. Seriously, fuck you Lloyd, my $15 just dropped a couple of points.

SIR BIG OL 3PEAT BOMB: Actually good call here. I love a good WFA prep run and he was 2 lengths off Avilius so prob gets ahead on relative weights. However Frankel as a stayer? Did he finish through the line well......not really but he boxed on very well after torrid first 800... He has defo missed the handicapper, and he worries me the most (of the light weights)...but his wide draw and ability to overrace costs him....But who do I like here as one who flew under the radar: Avilius (1 Aus horse always finishes in top 3), so I must include....and Youngstar reminds me of Ken the Barbie Doll...rattlin’ home with no hope of ever’re entitled to run on when u don’t do much...Ace High beats Ken home 5 times on Sunday...

What does your first four look like? 

PROFESSOR: Yucatan – Rostrpovich – Marmelo – Youngstar.

MASTER O: Marmelo, Magic Circle, Muntahaa, Best Solution

SIRBIG OL 3PEAT BOMB: Yucatan, Cliffsofmoher, Avilius, Best Solution

What is your actual betting play here? We hear constantly about people who are excellent at the Melbourne Cup, but it’s easier to track this when we call our shots properly

Prof: I’m no fan of multis, so let me get that into the wild first. I remember my third grade teacher at the wonderful Runcorn State School won a mystery tri on the Cup back in the 80s. Since then, I’ve never heard of any success in such tipping. There are 10,000 plus first four combinations, and 250,000 permutations. Just saying. No multi tickets will be purchased by this guy.
I’ll just be backing four horses, on the snorkel...WHERE IS YOUR PENCHANT FOR PLACE BET MR EACH WAY 235.2 % PROF O.
Yucatan (I’m hoping for $7s), Marmelo ($20s), Youngstar ($20s) and Rostropovich (if I am patient $40s?). If I back all of these to win $1,000 I would need to outlay $268 for effective odds of $3.73. I can live with that. Realistically if I fuck off work for the day and work like a day trader monitoring the odds I can probably get those odds closer to $4-$5*. I really like the Rostropovich place (which I may hit to win $1,000 as well). This would dilute my effective odds to $2.71 if one of my horses wins, or Rostro places, but would increase my maximum effective odds to $5.42.

MASTER O: I am just about to join a new betting agency so I will load up on Marmelo with a whopping free bet, have a bit on Magic Circle and then at the last minute I will probably freak out and hit Muntahaa just in case. They are the 3 I really like. For exotics, I do one first 4 a year on the Cup, to me it's like buying a lottery ticket, because you hear about those people who win the lotto....and sometimes win it again....fuck those people.

SIR BIG OL3 PEAT BOMB: Snorkel bet! $150 on the nose Yucatan. $50 f4 as above; with Chestnut Coat best roughie, ‘cause you forgive good horses 1 terrible wide run...beautiful looking horse too...
You haven’t talked about a horse, but you end up backing it tomorrow and sending me 100 text messages saying, “just quietly, my best result now is….”

PROFESSOR: Finche, it was always Finche. Plusses: credible performance off a torrid run in a stupid Geelong Cup. Waller. Cracksman form reference. Purton. Frankel. Used to bend over and spank Avilius all over continental Europe. Ignore my answer to the last question and assume that I now have a statue of Finche in my yard. Negatives: I only have so much money to invest in the mighty Finche. 

MASTER O: Not a chance, Master O will be saving that cash for one of his most successful betting ventures...MR8 on Cup Day!

SIR BIGOL 3PEAT BOMB: Chestnut Coat! I love how lightly raced he is and think with a good barrier draw and bowling along with Best Solution next to him...I think you see a much better effort... unless a sprinkler gets turned on overnight!

Monday, October 31, 2016


Yes it's that time of year again...waking up on the couch at 5am blanketed with your form guide and surrounded by empty beer bottles. Waiting for your co-workers to go on lunch so you can sneak in a few race replays and scribble some key notes, only to find them later in the washing machine, now in papier mache form. Having night terrors about a dirty hurdler thieving our Cup. Are you having troubles with the missus because you spend all your free time scouring the net for free bet offers?!? If you have experienced any of the above, you've come to the right place!

This year we have some new blood on the panel. Big Ol' was enthusiastic to say the least in his quest to become a WHAB blogger. Long story short, he offered us a gorilla each for a spot, we probably would have settled for a 6 pack each truth be told but thanks again Big Ol'! A horse racing fanatic with a penchant for Paul Gallen jokes and punting and golf stories about his mates, none of which our readers will have any idea who they are, we think he'll fit right in!

Introducing Big Ol'. Pictured here after Almandin won the Bart Cummings.


I have taken a different approach this year, The only way to make BIG DOLLARS is to talk value so I have just done my section in terms of whether I think a horse is OVER/UNDER the odds.
To me the standout horse is JAMEKA, and I see it as being considerably over the odds.
The second tier horses that are both in the market, and backable at their current prices are:
The horses that are overs, and BIG odds are:
The horse that I am most on the fence on is BIG ORANGE.
In terms of the horses that I think are tremendous UNDERS, the two standouts are BONDI BEACH and HARTNELL. These two horses are currently capturing ~30 per cent of the market, and I think they are both absolute poison.

1. BIG ORANGE, Bell/Spencer, (7) 57kg $17

Captain: This guy on form has a legitimate chance. But I won't back it because there have been 40 million internationals run in the Cup without a lead up run in Australia since Vintage Crop and they have all left empty handed. 

Professor: Came here last year, led up at a slow tempo and was swamped late. His UK form since has been really good. His form ties in really well through other horses that have run well here (Trip to Paris). I can maybe make excuses for its run last year as it was in significantly worse form, coming off a career worst run in the Lonsdale Cup. It’s on the cusp of receiving some of the Professor’s capital, might just need to get out to $20s.

UNDERS, but I might talk myself into this being OVERS by Tuesday.

Big Ol': On pace type who ran a good race last year and I hear whispers he is better this year. He will have to be, he had the perfect opportunity to win last year when they crawled up front; he loves 3200 and I see him in the top 10...

2. OUR IVANHOWE, Freedmans'/Dunn, (6) 57kg $34

Captain: A few months ago this guy was steamin' to victory in the Doomben Cup. Amazing to think that he has done fuck all since and is equal topweight in the Melbourne Cup! Ha!

Professor: Better than it looked in last year’s Cup. Progressing through a classic Cup prep getting better every start. Not likely but good value at $51. This is just the kind of horse a few schooners and some early wins will make me add to my list.

OVERS, best roughie?

Big Ol': I think he is a good outsider on a bog track; he is a mudder, his father was a mudder; his mother was a mudder..he was born in slop.....if it rains its a top 10 at best for Sir Big Ol'.....if not 15-20...

3. CURREN MIROTIC, Hirata/Berry, (18) 56.5kg $26

Captain: For every Delta Blues that's come out to run in the Cup, there's been a half dozen Hokko Braves. To me, this is a Hokko Brave. Maybe even a Tokai Trick.

Professor: Do you like form around FAME GAME? If you do, I think you would enjoy the stylings of CURREN MIROTIC. In May this year, in the 3,200 metre Tenno Sho he just missed behind the very talented Kitasan Black. Last year in the same race he finished adjacent to Fame Game. That’s his 3,200 metre caper. It’s good. Every other recent start: rubbish, and he seems to have been overlooked as a result.

OVERS, Will see a lot of my capital.

Big Ol': Tommy Berry locked this ride in a half year ago after the "fastly run-wink wink Captain" Tenno was a good effort for a horse that requires Alzheimer's cream and a zimmer frame; he is very hard to catch, but I hear the Japanese want an on pacer type as they are sick of these dawdle Melbourne Cups where the backmarkers have no chance...he jumps from 18 which I hear has never had a winner...I think he can run well, but if he was ever going to win from the front, needed a better 7 hope...

4. BONDI BEACH,  O'Brien/Moore, (5) 56kg $9

Captain: Way too short. No lead up run in Oz. Form looks merely adequate. Since last year's Cup has run in fields of 3,5,6 and 8 runners. There's 24 here, he's going to get bumped and eyeballed and pressured...not to mention Frankie Dettori at some stage making his "winning move". And an Aidan O'Brien/Willams' combination, how will that work? I can't decide whether he will be a late scratching or run the first 6 furlongs faster than the day's sprint race...

Professor: Coming through weaker European form lines, and was pretty poor last year. I can’t find a way to justify the $9, I really can’t. IT DOESN’T MAKE SENSE. 

"Now think about that for one minute..."

UNDERS, massive, massive, massive unders.

Big Ol': Well any horse that J Bird spruiks in a Cup is generally not a chance...Doriemus was very good Bird, but that is all you've ever had (go Might And Power!). He was only 3 years old last year and with the slow tempo, I think it was a forgive...draws barrier 5. I think the owners set him for this a while ago, seems like a good prep, I see him running in the top chance he gets my hard earned kish though....his name reminds me of Sydney and Paul Gallen too much....

5. EXOSPHERIC, Freedmans'/Oliver, (13) 56kg  $21

Captain: Of the Internationals, this is one I don't mind. Mostly because it had a lead up race in the Caulfield Cup where he was solid. He meets Jameka 1.5kg better here. No form above 2400 to speak of, but Caulfield Cup form always counts for something in my book. He's some value at $21.

Professor: Outstayed by Big Orange (himself a staying risk) over 2,400 metres. Good run in the Caulfield Cup but looked to run out of puff. Don’t think it gets the journey.


Big Ol': He ran well in the Caulfield Cup, he looks like he does a bit wrong in his races, but obviously potential there, and at least you know he has travelled well; however, his name is too close to Exosphere and for that I can't have him at all...further, I question 3200m with him....

6. HARTNELL, O'Shea/McDonald, (12) 56kg  $5

Captain: The beauty of Hartnell being $5 favourite in this race is that we can all get a much better price on everything else. Because Hartnell doesn't stay a genuine two miles. Going by his two real cracks at it in Oz, he's a better chance to beat Winx in the 2017 Cox Plate than win the 2016 Melbourne Cup.

Professor: The Poor man’s SO YOU THINK! Two 3,200 metre runs both poor: doesn’t stay. Don’t get me wrong I would love to own a poor man’s So You Think, but not on Cup Day (unless it’s running in the James Boags Premium Stakes). 

UNDERS, winner of the So You Think Award for making everything else so backable!

Big Ol': Towelled up Jameka with a great Turnbull run - that is a race at set weights and not WFA and I still can't forget his howler Spring last year. If he settles and doesn't overrace (think Sydney Cup) I think he wins...but he is a fairy, big strong horse that seems to choke on the big occasion....the horse to most remind me of Greg Norman or Wade Ormsby and I thank his owners for putting him in the race - so we all get better odds...I know the Captain agrees..but I think he is still a player....I think he runs in the top 6.

7. WHO SHOT THEBARMAN, Waller/Bowman, (20) 56kg $34

Captain: Thebarman will runwell as he alwaysdoes. I just thinkthat he isnot going aswell as hehas been inpast editions of theCup, at similar oddswith similar formI prefer theMarshal. Big Ol' seemsto think thosetwo are friendsbut I have it ongood authority thatthey hate each other'sguts!

Professor: You know what you are going to get here. A good ride from Balls Out Bowman. A moment 400 metres out of thinking that you are a chance, the realisation that over the last 200 metres he keeps going but doesn’t have the sprint to match it with the best stayers. It’s the WSTB life. 

Big Ol': He reminds me of the ultimate club player, a horse of integrity, heart, commitment, he reminds me of Steve "Beaver" Menzies....The horse is all ticker, loves 3200 and ran a huge race a few years ago when 3rd and just behind Red Cadeaux in a great year for the Cup. I see him running over the line with his pal Grand Marshal, a fave of Champ and Malones...If he gets a good run, I see this old marvel running home between 10-15....

8. WICKLOW BRAVE, Mullins/Dettori, (24) 56kg $18

Captain: This is a huge chance because Frankie Dettori doesn't give a flying fuck about anything else when he's riding in a Cup. Took out half the field last year, I see no reason why we won't see a repeat here.

That's right! I took out ten of the fuckers!

I won't back it because it's a hurdler and that's against my religion.

Professor: Went down to Big Orange at Goodwood, and then went out and spanked a good field (including trip to Paris 16 lengths away in third!) in the Irish St Leger on a track with some more give. Get the feeling that the hard track won’t suit at all. This is, dare I say, the exact horse that the Europeans spent years bringing out before they started to get it. 


Big Ol':  A very interesting runner and maybe one of the best of the International brigade. He loves 3200 and beat Order Of St George in the Group 1 St Leger...He is highly rated and seems to be getting better with age like a good whiskey. I think his chances come down to his ride from the carpark gate of 24...Frankie "Lets Take Out Half The Field On Max Dynamite" Dettori is in the saddle and he does not care who he takes out to get over the line...I think he runs well and comes in the top I betting on the old Irish veteran? Hold my beer while a kiss your woman!!!!!!...O!!

9. ALMOONQITH, Hayes-Dabernig/Walker, (19) 54.5kg  $21

Captain: Still doesn't have a 'u' after the 'q' which makes it untrustworthy. Was "flashing home" in the Caulfield Cup...but in reality wasn't really making any ground on Jameka despite Hall popping the cork on some victory champers over the last 50m. So it was clearly the 2nd best run there, let's not kid ourselves. Has a win over Grand Marshal and Thebarman over 2 miles so he is in with some chance. Can be hard to catch though. But I always like Caulfield Cup form.

Professor: Very unlucky in last year’s shemozzle: they walked and he got within 4 lengths from the back. And the Caulfield Cup run was a good pointer to the 3,200 and the open spaces of Flemington being a good fit. His four runs over the trip were a midfield run behind Cups also-ran Sex Panther in Dubai (works everytime), a midfield effort in the farcical 2015 Cup, a sound win over the B-graders (The Offer, Grand Marshal) at the end of last year’s spring carnival and a midfield Sydney Cup finish when he got far too far back. It stays, it may be at its best but it likely needs a heads up ride from Walker. Badly wants a rock hard track and a cracking tempo. 

OVERS, think it gets the tempo and track that it needs

Big Ol': Well he is a key to this Cup as I have tied his runs in with a lot of the field- to indirectly compare a few of the big chances (i.e Almandin and Almandin!). Came home like a wet sail in the Caufield Cup and that always tells me that he is a good chance. The Captain tells me, from the stewards, that he jarred up in the Bart Cummings and to be weary of him as a form reference. Big Ol' disagrees on that. I have this one in 10-15th place. I know he won the Sandown Cup but I query the merit of the stewards info of course hey Captain?! I hear the Professor rates Almoonqith as a big show for the Cup, I get that, the Professor has a keen eye and huge respect to the dirty Gallen loving cockroach. I was all over him last year- like a one armed bricklayer in Baghdad, I jumped off his good win at a price last year and therefore I have to stay off...

10. GALLANTE, Hickmott/Shinn, (2) 54.5kg  $61

Captain: Before the Moonee Valley Cup I was all over this one. I was convinced the Williamses were up to something. And maybe they still are. Maybe they knew he wouldn't handle the Valley. Maybe it's all part of the Williams' Cup runner process. Maybe they'll slip God a paper bag full of cash and it will piss down rain on Cup day and he'll power through the mud to victory!...***NEWSFLASH*** "Gallante a late scratching for the Cup"...

Professor: After a very strong first up 2nd in the Naturalism he ran an absolute shocker in the Mooney Valley Cup. He demonstrated that he could stay winning the Sydney Cup in April, albeit at a walk (The runs of the beaten brigade- e.g. Grand Marshal are probably better pointers to this race). Probably your best chance to stack them up and give this bunch a hard Prince of Penzancing, so if you can get 100:1 on Cup day I think you should take some of it. 

OVERS, always forgive a good horse a shocker, especially at the Valley.

Big Ol': Well I multi-ed this horse with The United States and Winx on Cox Plate day and he let me down. However, he had a tough run with this pink horse pestering him the whole way round Moonee Valley (like J Bird's basketball defence - sweaty, rubbish and annoying). I think it's a forgive run, the Captain rates him highly, I rate the Captain as a horseman highly (less so as a golfer) but I can't forgive him as I would have won $600 plus from that multi. I see him surprising a few with a top 11 finish...

11. GRAND MARSHAL, Waller/Melham, (9) 54.5kg $34

Captain: Strong finish in the Moonee Valley Cup and peaking at the right time. And I hear Waller has set up a "Frankie" obstacle course and has been putting Melham through his paces. It's still no guarantee that they won't get pole-axed at the 300, but I like this guy enough to take the risk at the price.

Professor: Trip proven. Was given no chance in last year’s Cup, and followed it up with a good performance in the Sandown Cup.  Was the follow horse from the Sydney Cup in April. In very good form, can win.


Big Ol': The Champs horse, a horse of the people, salutes at great odds and has a huge heart. I have him running with his pal Thebarman, and if it rains I see him surging through the pack for a top 10 finish. Usually I don't rate a horse who was unplaced the year before in a Cup but he had a strong excuse, Dettori almost decapitated the Pumper. He wears Delectation's colours, I like that, I would love to see him run well as I know Champ and Malones will be filthy rich from thereafter...go Marshal!!!!!
12. JAMEKA, Maher/Hall, (3) 54.5kg $7.50


Professor: Jameka is on top from my analysis. Won the Caulfield Cup comfortably, and it is hard to see anything from that race turning the tables (although there are some juicy odds out there!). Coming in to the field are some more internationals (of varying quality) and Hartnell who doesn’t stay the trip. Very well weighted, on trial at the trip but won the Oaks on a bog as a 3 y.o. so it seems like the trip should suit. 

OVERS, Best bet.

Big Ol': What a Caulfield Cup win!!! I knew she would win that but I tried extracting value with Scottish and that move did not work! Sir Big Ol' learns from his mistakes and I have put a $50 bonus bet saver on her as I think she could put in an Ethereal type performance this year -a massive filly, with a trainer with great hair. Is that enough for me? Yes it is, top 3 chance and you will be mad to not put a bet on, that is if you like cash and good hair!!!!

13. HEARTBREAK CITY, Martin/Moreira, (23) 54kg  $12

V. Do you reject Satan?
R. I do.
V. And all his works?
R. I do.
V. And all his empty promises?
R. I do.
V. But mostly, do you reject hurdling?
R. I do. Fuck yes I do.

Professor: Definitely stays. I am going to have to rethink my hurdler disdain when it comes to European horses. This guy seemingly used a hurdle win over this trip as conditioning, then went out and absolutely destroyed his opposition in the Ebor which has traditionally been a pretty good lead-up. Then need I mention: JOAO! Who was the first jockey on Derby Day to work out that hard against the grandstand was the place to be? JOAO! If there is going to be a jockey who steals this tactically, it’s going to be one guy: JOAO! Nobody does form better than this guy, so if he is here to ride it you know it’s good! JOAO!

OVERS, think you will get more on the day as well!

Big Ol': The Magic Man seems confident and this old veteran has put in a few good runs over flats and hurdles. Sir Big Ol' knows only 1 "dirty hurdler" runs well in the Cup and it's not her. I see her missing the jump (like a dirty hurdler) and running in the rear for most of the race. I have her in the back 5 and no chance from the torrid barrier....

14. SIR JOHN HAWKWOOD, Thompson/Spriggs, (14) 54kg  $81

Captain: For those of you who are thinking "Wow, this horse has been knighted, it must be good", bear in mind that "Sir" Big Ol' just personally knighted himself here in this guide during his comments on Our Ivanhowe. Knighthoods should be taken with a grain of salt these days...

Professor: Remember when the Metrop was a great form reference? Neither do I. I have been slipped enough Sir John Hawkwood by this guy, never again.


Big Ol': I like this horse. He won from pillar to post in the Metropolitan and Sir Big Ol' ate steak with blue cheese that night. However, the Metrop is a horrible Paul Gallen type race and I think Sir John has a slim chance at best. Needs to turn his form around like Jakkalberry a few years ago (Big Ol' won well off the place with that one!). I see him as a chance to finish between 15-20...

15. EXCESS KNOWLEDGE Waterhouse-Bott/Duric (21) 53.5  $67

Captain: Excess cobalt is this guy's only hope.

Professor: Don’t be fooled by the finishing margin in last year’s Cup, led at a ridiculously slow tempo and was still swamped late. A more genuine pace gives him no chance.


Big Ol': Ran well last year in the Cup, and again like Big Orange had his chance to win up front on a slow tempo. I think he was better last year, however he was ridden from the front and I think he runs better as a drop in horse. I don't see him leading at any point after the clocktower this year....15-20 here gents...

16. BEAUTIFUL ROMANCE, Bin Suroor/Lane, (1) 52.5kg  $41

Captain: Every year Bin Suroor brings a horse that shows no evidence two miles suits. Every fucking year. It's like there is a spot reserved in every Cup field for whichever unseasoned, somehow-qualified runner he likes, even though Godolphin have multiples runners every year. Fuck right off!

Professor: I always save the horses I give the lowest number of fucks about until last, and it really shows up in my *analysis.* This horse recently won at Goodwood, which is something I hear Big Ol' has for Almandin. Not winning.


Big Ol': I respect team Godolphin and admire the Sheiks unnerving dedication to winning the great Cup. It's great for racing, it's great if you love blue, but I don't see a Central Park run from her. Damian Lane takes the ride, and I have seen him put too many howlers on Rising Romance in years gone to consider this horse a threat. I have her finishing in J Bird's golf position week in, week out - last....

17. ALMANDIN, Hickmott/McEvoy, (17) 52kg $15

Captain: If he runs two miles he's a chance. The real story here is with Big Ol'. He has a diamond cutter for this horse:

Big Ol' discussing Almandin's Cup campaign at the office

Professor: Two big wins over 2,400 and 2,500 as lead up. While strong he has beaten nothing, so you are having to take it on faith a little bit that this guy can run and win in this class. That said, he has won running away, looks to be a moral to stay the 3,200 and has no weight. From my estimation, probably the biggest overs in the race.


Big Ol': Well punters sit down now as Sir Big Ol' has a few wise words to impart. This horse is a very lightly raced 7 year old, beat Protectionist in the home of lederhosen the year he won the cup by 4 lengths. The highest rated 4 yr old to be imported by Lloyd Williams, a man with a never ending woody for the Cup! Now this horse was in cotton wool for 2 years and I hear has had a lot of TLC and pipe and slippers to get back to his young self. He put in a huge watch run in the Autumn, and Sir Big Ol' has noticed how well he seems to finish off his races of late. He has Kerrin McEvoy on his back, maybe the form jockey of the Spring, and I see him greeting the judge in the top 1 position! I have him on top of the bell-end, and like the Professor, I just hope he gets a good ride from barrier 17. He wins gents and its a "Get On" from Sir Big Ol'......

18. ASSIGN, Hickmott/Mallyon, (22) 52kg $71

Captain: Suspect at the trip, the gate puts the line through him.

Professor: Hasn’t run a bad race since arriving in Australia. In my black book for the Sandown Cup, because he does everything you want of a Sandown Cup winner (stays, turns up), but I don’t think this is his day.

Big Ol': Almandin towelled him up a few starts ago and I see that continuing. However, I see him defying his odds and running in the top 13.....

19. GREY LION, Cumani/Boss, (16) 52kg $34

Captain: Not seasoned enough, and sifting through his form, not good enough.

Professor: Part of the hot tempo at Geelong. Very good run at Geelong. Had a run in Australia to acclimatise. Hard to back them all, but probably OVER the odds.


Big Ol': OTI always runs a good one in the Cup and this horse is no different. The Geelong Cup looked average on paper but it seems like the form and clock might stack up. I see him running in the top 6, as long as he doesn't ogle Francesa Cumani up the straight and decide to head over for cheese and crackers and a good morning trombone! Further, he has a great name and Bossy has the Midas Touch in the Cup at times...just not the greatest judge of future champions......remember when he called Puissance de Lune as the next Makybe Diva? No Bossy no.....

20. OCEANOGRAPHER, Appleby/Schofield, (11) 52kg $6.50

Captain: Won the Lexus and predictably the world went mad with Oceanographer Fever. While I think he is an out and out stayer, this is his 3rd run in 13 days here, and that takes enough edge off for me to say that $6.50 is way too short.

Professor: For the mugs. Chased down the thoroughly average Tom Melbourne to win the Lexus. Relished the red hot tempo and terrible field to hit everybody’s black book after Geelong. I will make this point elsewhere but the best two runs out of Geelong were the two horses that ran it hard up front and fought on best.

UNDERS, total mugs bet.

Big Ol': I hear he came in under 33.5 secs in the Lexus and that is like our friend Rosberg in the Formula 1! I see him a huge threat.....a minute after the Lexus win Mr Carpenter chucked 1kg on him as quick as CJ "Rory" James is to pipe a huge drive and walk briskly ahead to check if he drove the green on the par 5...and let u know about if for 2 weeks thereafter. I think he puts in a Malucky day type run, however, if he hasn't eaten his Weetbix, he could be a bit tired after running 10k in the last 2 weeks. Comes in 4th-5th...

21. SECRET NUMBER, Bin Suroor/Baster, (10) 52kg $34

Captain: Probably not the worst but not nearly good enough for me to give two shits either.

Professor: What’s your secret number? Is it 24th?


Big Ol': Tried to get in last year but just missed out like poor old Tom Melbourne this year. He is the star Godolphin runner (from the oil region) and I have him looking the winner at some stage...but folding in the last 200m like the Godolphins usually do...Falls apart badly for a 10-15 finish...

22. PENTATHLON, Wheeler/Du Plessis, (4) 51.5kg $101

Captain: Can he swim? Shoot a gun? Wield an epee? Poofter jump over a dressage course? Because the 3200m cross country is going to really test him.

Professor: Beaten by the terrible Rose of Virginia in a down Auckland Cup. Form against the B/C grade stayers moderate. Won’t win. 


Big Ol': Probably should not be in the Cup and comes second last....enough said!!

23. QEWY, Appleby/Williams, (15) 51.5k $31

Captain: No 'u' after the 'q'. And a dirty hurdler. A wretched combination.

Qewy sporting his new blinkers

Professor: Beat Oceanographer in the Geelong Cup over 2400 metres. Given that this guy called the tune up front (and it was a cracking tempo), I am inclined to see this as the better horse. I am doubtful that this is good enough to win, but it has the right historical preparation for a European horse, and I am inclined to see this as being OVER the odds.


Big Ol': A very interesting runner and the star "hurdler" of the group. Made the Geelong Cup a true staying test and loves running on the pace. Draws well and I see him making this year's Cup a truly run affair. I see him keeping up the same tempo all the way through and holding on for a 6-11 finish. The runner up in the Beaver Menzies Clubman Award and I respect him immensely....for a dirty hurdler....

24. ROSE OF VIRGINIA, Thompson/Hopes', (8) 51kg $201

Captain: Unlucky in the Lexus when beaten 15.5L, the upside to her is that she'll be nowhere near when Frankie makes his move in the straight.

Professor: Form generally poor, it’s best run (2nd in the Auckland Cup) was a surprise in a down year. Can’t have.

UNDERS, Can $301 be unders? Yes, yes it can.

Big Ol':  I think this horse should go back to New Zealand and jump dirty chance and the market has shadow priced her ability spot on....third last.....


1. Jameka
2. Almoonqith
3. Grand Marshal
4. Oceanographer

Backing Jameka hard. Boxing these four with Big Orange, Gallante, and Almandin. But mostly, backing Jameka hard!


1. Jameka
2. Almandin
3. Heartbreak City
4. Curren Mirotic
5. Almoonqith


1. Almandin
2. Jameka
3. Grey Lion
4. Oceanographer

Good luck all! I'll be counting my stash tomorrow night mwwaaahahahaha!!!

Tuesday, November 3, 2015


Well folks, it's hard to believe, but Precedence somehow outlived Bart. As we all pay tribute to one JB Cummings in the lead up to this year's Cup, ol' Precedence just couldn't get there for one last crack at the top 10 in the Great Race.

Precedence after getting towelled up in the Moonee Valley Cup...

No time for shedding tears though, let's get into it!

Hope you've all managed to get the day off, my missus happens to be "getting her wisdom teeth out" on Tuesday, what a coincidence!

1. SNOW SKY (16) 58 Sir Stoute/Moore $51

Captain: I have never really come to terms with the art of handicapping and I am no closer when I consider this guy hasn't even won a Group 1 and is lumped with 58kg. Topweight in the Melbourne Cup is usually reserved for horses who have won the Cup last year or some other serious race!

Professor: When I saw this was top weight I thought I was looking at a solid running of the Launceston Cup. *good* form around *champion* English stayer Brown Panther, combined with top weight makes this a hard pass for me.

2. CRITERION (4) 57.5 Hayes and Dabernig/Walker $13

Captain: This is really a crystal ball job as to whether he runs two miles. The Derby runs are good without over-exciting me. I am going to leave him out.

Professor: Gets a champions weight, reflecting the fact that he is a champion. However, that weight was all earned at shorter trips and I don't think it reflects his ability over the two miles. I may back it, but it's a heart bet.

3. FAME GAME (12) 57 Manukata/Purton $3.50

Captain: My early Cup tip, hit the line hard in the Caulfield Cup, but has been grossly over-bet by the public since then. He's still my top pick to win but certainly not any value at that price, so I will leave no stone unturned, I will scour the ends of the earth, I will use whatever means necessary, and drum up a gorilla's worth of free bets to plonk on this guy!

Professor: As strong a cup trial as you will ever see in the Caulfield Cup. Top line Japanese form. Should win.

4. OUR IVANHOWE (22) 56 Freedmans/Melham $26

Captain: Can't dismiss after Caulfield Cup run but all form around 2400...

Professor: Steadily improving and the Caulfield Cup run, while not flashy suggests this could be a good chance at odds.

5. BIG ORANGE (23) 55.5 Bell/Spencer $51

Captain: I may have mentioned this last year but I think it's something like the last 1000 horses to run in the Cup without a lead up run in Oz since Vintage Crop (1993) have won zero (0) Melbourne Cups. Maybe this guy will change it all, providing he doesn't get flogged by 14, 25 or 42 lengths as he has done in the past 6 months.

Professor: Our former co-writer must be hammering this? And if it loves a sauce moat as much as him it won't be winning. Oh pass the condiment-o's.

6. HARTNELL (17) 55.5 O'Shea/McDonald $34

Captain: I may have mentioned this last year also but at last count I think it's like 2000+ Godolphin horses who have run in the Cup for zero (0) wins. Also, I would love to hear Greg Carpenter's explanation as to how a horse who carries 52kg in the Sydney Cup, gets flogged by genuine two milers Grand Marshal and TheBarman, finishes no better than 4th in any race since then...gets 55.5kg in the Melbourne Cup.

Professor: With all the buzz around Hartnell, the question that one should ask is does Hartnell stay? Evidence to date suggests that a slowly run Sydney Cup, or a Brisbane Cup, or even a Perth Cup would be well in his reach. Does he stay in this field? Not so much.

7. HOKKO BRAVE (20) 55.5 Matsunaga/Williams $34

Captain: A poor man's Fame Game.

Professor: Obviously the less fancied of the two Japanese runners based on form in both Japan and in the Caulfield Cup. Wide run at Caulfield but showed nothing at the business end. And that's where you have to get it done. The business end. You can hit as many 300 yard drives you want but what's the point if you can't sink a three footer?

8. MAX DYNAMITE (2) 55 Mullins/Dettori $14

Captain: There are things that a man just can't handle in life, and one of those for me will be the day a hurdler wins the Melbourne Cup. I don't give a fuck if it's an elite pastime in the UK, hurdling is only interesting to Aussie punters who have polished off a bottle of vodka for breakfast and think AR1 is all of a sudden a good idea, if you know what I mean Professor?!? Ah the good old days!

Pre-race breakfast at the Professor's circa 2002!

Professor: Hurdler, turdler, girdler.

9. RED CADEAUX (8) 55 Dunlop/Mosse $31

Captain: Now older than Precedence and with more 2nds than the NSW Origin team, unfortunately the window for winning the Cup has closed on this ol' timer. But he is just always there at the finish over 3200 at Flemington, you could do worse than throwing him into your multiples.

Professor: In 2019 he'll still stay better than half of these. Why not take some of the juicy odds that it will finish in the top seven? Why not?

10. TRIP TO PARIS (14) 55 Dunlop/Berry $9

Captain: Obviously will get the trip and obviously not a Winchester one-paced plugger on his lead up run in the Caulfield Cup. His trainer is proven in producing a quality Cup runner. Include in multiples.

Professor: Its trial run in the Caulfield Cup was impressive but not quite as impressive as that turned in by Fame Game. In all of my exotics but I won't be backing it outright.

11. WHO SHOT THEBARMAN (6) 54.5 Waller/Shinn $17

Captain: Well backand widest inthe Caulfield Cup butran on nicely. Would havewon the Sydney Cup ifnot for a stonking GrandMarshal finish, 3rd inthe Melbourne Cup lastyear andwith Kris Lees having noidea andruining Protectionist with manyruns toomany, andRed Cadeaux now olderthan Precedence, thisguy hasto bein allmultiples.

Professor: There is a market for a top seven finish and TheBarman is paying $2.70 in that market, and I think that is just about a license to print money. He's demonstrated the ability to run this trip out (half of this field won't) he's had another year with Waller, and while I think he will find a few better he's a special to finish somewhere from third to seventh.

12. SKY HUNTER (7) 54 Bin Suroor/Buick $41

Captain: Bin Suroor always brings horses that haven't run the trip, and don't particularly look like they want to run the trip. Melbourne's a lovely place to be this time of year though. Also, not wanting to sound like a broken record, but Godolphin have brought out 10,000 odd horses to run in the Cup now and have won zero (0) Cups.

Professor: At $41 this actually looks to have some of the more interesting form of the euro runners. Still, probably not winning, that's 0/497 Godolphin.

13. THE OFFER (13) 54 Waterhouse/Oliver $51

Captain: A Country Cups merchant this campaign, his latest outing in the Bendigo Cup he knocked off a last start Pakenham Park BM70 winner. He won a Sydney Cup too...but Brigantin ran 4th in that one. Brigantin.

Professor: Likely to stay, but would need mandatory flippers and snorkels to be troubling these.

14. GRAND MARSHAL (15) 53.5 Waller/Cassidy  $41

Captain: Possibly the biggest horse to have ever lived, being ridden by possibly the smallest man to have ever lived...

It's a match made in heaven, and with the Pumper announcing his retirement after the Carnival, there would be nothing more fitting than Grand Marshal being driven to Cup glory along the Grandstand rail, Pumper's favourite place to be. Clackety Clack. Ring A Ding Ding.

Professor: Silly silly price available for in form Sydney Cup winner. Probably won't win, but double figure place odds seem generous.

15. PREFERMENT (11) 53.5 Waller/Bowman $10

Captain: Form is great outside of the completely unsuitable Cox Plate...

Professor: Best of the Aussies by a good margin. 2,500 metres was no problem as a developing three year old. Form this campaign has been impeccable. Clear second pick for me.

16. QUEST FOR MORE (21) 53.5 Charlton/Lane $126

Captain: His run in the Geelong Cup does not augur well for a few of these, including the dirty hurdler. And with Lane on board, I am going to suggest the Quest For More lies somewhere a long fucking way away from Flemington...

Professor: Form around Trip To Paris but flopped at Geelong... Hard pass.

17. ALMOONQITH (10) 53 Hayes and Dabernig/Dunn $14

Captain: I never trust something that doesn't have a 'u' after a 'q', Qantas for example. More importantly, I also don't trust anything in a Melbourne Cup that has been done by Brown Panther over 2 miles to the tune of 7 lengths and is paying $15.

Professor: If you like The United States, and I do, you should like this one as well. Ran on fiercely behind the States at Caulfield and then convincingly won the Geelong Cup. $15s a little skinny but a very good chance,.

18. KINGFISHER (9) 53 Sissy O'Brien/O'Donoghue $41

Captain: I am going to suggest that if you back a horse in the Melbourne Cup that has been beaten by 16L and 43 L in it's lead ups, hasn't had a lead up run Downunder, and is trained by Sissy O'Brien, then you are off you're fucking trolley.

Professor: The newest arrival from the Lloyd Williams conveyor belt of stayers. Form okay, but sight unseen it's a hard pass from me.

19. PRINCE OF PENZANCE (1) 53 Weir/Payne $81

Captain: Couldn't overcome the might of The United States at the Valley, not the worst but won't be having it.

Professor: The ease with which The United States hunted this down over the shorter trip suggests it will find at least one far better. That said, it likely will stay, and a top seven finish is a decent bet.
20. BONDI BEACH (18) 52.5 Sissy O'Brien/Prebble $21
Captain: There are things I look for in a Melbourne Cup horse and this thing has none of them circa 2015. Maybe next year if Sissy O'Brien is replaced by Hickmott. Not wanting to sound like a broken record but there have been some 30 million Internationals since Vintage Crop without a lead up in Aus combining for a total of zero (0, zilch, nada, nil, sweet fuck all) Cup wins.

Professor: This one will start far too short tomorrow. Average UK form and then you have Sneaky Lloyd Williams talking it up which means: hit The United States.
21. SERTORIUS (5) 52.5 Edwards/Newitt $Write Your Own Ticket

Captain: Ah for fuck's sake, it's 11:37pm on Cup Eve, the punters are sweating on us publishing this and I'm supposed to deal Sertorius right now?!?

Professor: At his best, two years ago I'd fancy this to finish in the top half of the field at best.

22. THE UNITED STATES (3) 52.5 Hickmott/Moreira $20

Captain: Ask anyone from the U S of A and they'll tell you this guy is gonna win the Cup for sure!

Professor: Best roughie in the field. Was really impressive gobbling up Prince Of Penzance over 2,500 metres last start and they gapped the rest. Gives the impression that the track and distance may suit as well. I'll be including this in all of my multis.

23. EXCESS KNOWLEDGE (24) 51 Waterhouse/McEvoy $34

Captain: Only in the field because Terry Bailey has never had the balls to uphold a perfectly reasonable protest in a feature race ever. Zanteco's connections are reportedly in talks with Dan Nikolic...

Professor: Winners of the Lexus/Saab/Lavazza/Steggles always start unders... Sometimes the race unearths a Shocking. Most of the time it finds Big Pat.

24. GUST OF WIND (19) 51 Sargent/Schofield $34

Captain: If I knew for certain she ran two miles then she'd be my top pick here. Want to know who the last horse to beat Winx was?!?

Professor: Hard to see any reason why an each way ticket would hurt here. Every run leading in has suggested that 3,200 at Flemington would be perfect.

1. Fame Game
2. Grand Marshal
3. Who Shot TheBarman
4. Trip To Paris
5. Gust Of Wind
The only others that I will consider for multis are The United States and Preferment.
Win bets (three or four out of)
Fame Game, Preferment, Gust Of Wind, The United States, Almoonqith.

First four (boxed)

Some final food for thought from the great man:

“You had a tear in your eye,” remarked a racing scribe to Bart Cummings, after the Cummings trained Saintly had just won the Melbourne Cup.

 “Yeah, I didn’t have enough on it”