A total of 72 horses remain in contention for the Melbourne Cup after first declarations were taken on Tuesday.
Third declarations were also taken for the other two spring features, the Caulfield Cup and Cox Plate.
Among the declarations for the $6.2 million Melbourne Cup (3200m) on November 4 are 15 internationally prepared gallopers including dual runner-up Red Cadeaux along with Japan’s duo of Admire Ratki and Bande, currently undergoing quarantine at Werribee.
Another plane load of stayers is due to arrive in Melbourne on Saturday and enter quarantine including Godolphin pair Cavalryman and Willing Foe.
Top local hopes include current $10 co-favourites Lucia Valentina and The Offer and Saturday’s Flemington winner Who Shot Thebarman.
Precedence keeps the dream alive for Bart and James Cummings as the legendary Bart chases a 13th Melbourne Cup victory.
Notable omissions include Puccini, Saturday’s Epsom Handicap winner He’s Your Man, Spillway and the Gai Waterhouse-trained import Cafe Society who has been ruled out for the spring after heat was detected in the near foreleg.
Seven horses prepared by international trainers are among 41 horses left in the Caulfield Cup (2400m) on Saturday week.
Admire Ratki and Bande will be joined by last year’s runner-up Dandino in the $3 million race along with (My) Ambivalent and Seismos while (Lord) Van Percy and Renew will be trying to force their way in to the race with victory in the Herbert Power Stakes (2400m) on Saturday.
Lucia Valentina currently heads the market at $6.50 for the Caulfield Cup following her win in Saturday’s Turnbull Stakes at Flemington ahead of Bande ($9) with Dear Demi and Who Shot Thebarman on the next line at $13.
Godolphin galloper Contributer remains in contention and will leave the Werribee quarantine stables on Saturday for the stables of John O’Shea to continue his preparation for the Cups, but may struggle to get into the Caulfield Cup as he is currently 26th in the order of entry.
The Aidan O’Brien-trained Adelaide spearheads five international gallopers among 41 horses left in the Cox Plate (2040m) at Moonee Valley on October 25.
Adelaide arrives in Melbourne on Saturday and joins Dan Excel, Farraaj, Guest Of Honour and Side Glance among third declarations for the $3 million race.
Singapore Airlines International Cup winner Dan Excel (Weekend Hussler Stakes), Guest Of Honour (Toorak Handicap) and Side Glance (Caulfield Stakes) will further their Cox Plate aspirations by running at Caulfield on Saturday.
A total of 10 three-year-olds remain in contention for the Cox Plate while Fawkner and Sacred Falls share the top line of betting for the race at $6 ahead of Dissident and Happy Trails at $9.