Hugh Bowman’s choice of a Melbourne Cup ride been whittled down following the announcement Ryan Moore will partner Red Cardinal at Flemington.
It brings together the team that won the 2014 Melbourne Cup with Protectionist – trainer Andreas Wohler, owners Australian Bloodstock and Moore.
Red Cardinal is in quarantine at Werribee racecourse following his arrival in Australia just over a week ago.
He was expected to run in Saturday’s Herbert Power Stakes (2400m), the race Protectionist ran fourth in before his Cup victory, but will head straight into the 3200m race on November 7 without an Australian start.
Bowman partnered Red Cardinal in a gallop at Werribee on Thursday.
He went to Werribee again on Saturday morning to put another international aspirant, Marmelo, through his paces before riding champion Winx to her 21st straight victory at Flemington.
He will return on Tuesday to ride Tiberian in a gallop for French trainer Alain Couetil.
Bowman said there was also the possibility he could ride one of the Lloyd Williams-owned horses in the Melbourne Cup 2017.
The Hughie Morrison-trained Marmelo wasn’t out to make any time on Saturday and for Bowman it was an opportunity to get an understanding of the stayer.
“He gave me a good feel but we just went through the motions,” Bowman said.
“He’s a very similar type to Red Cardinal and both feel like good horses.”
Bowman said it won’t be an easy choice when it comes to choosing his Cup mount.
“It’s a bit like putting your hand in the hat and trying to pick the right number,” he said.
Red Cardinal is the highest rated of the trio in Melbourne Cup betting at $17 with Marmelo and Tiberian both at $21.