Melbourne Cup hopes will go on the line in the Moonee Valley Cup but Tony McEvoy is resigned to not getting there with Le Roi.
Le Roi is among seven horses in the 10-horse Moonee Valley Cup field still in the Melbourne Cup entries but he hasn’t passed the first ballot clause and is only third-up on Saturday.
“He hasn’t quite had the preparation for a Melbourne Cup for me,” McEvoy said.
“We had setbacks with him early doors and then got held up with rain.
“In my planning I did have the Melbourne Cup in mind but the Moonee Valley Cup was going to be his fourth run, not his third.
“So we’re not going to get there.”
McEvoy said he had been thrilled with Le Roi’s two runs from a spell, with his most-recent effort a third in the Cranbourne Cup (2025m).
“He looked the winner and then his condition just gave out,” McEvoy said, adding the horse had come on nicely.
“I’m really expecting him to run very well,” he said.
Precedence, winner of the 2010 and 2013 Moonee Valley Cup, is second favourite behind Opinion.
The veteran missed a start in last year’s Melbourne Cup but seems assured of a berth this year.
The Bart and James Cummings-trained nine-year-old was 24th in the latest order of entry released on Monday, with horses above him already confirmed to miss the race.
Black Tycoon, a $101 shot in Saturday’s race, was 26th with Mr O’Ceirin 28th and Opinion 29th.
French stayer Au Revoir makes his Australian debut and is out to cement a Melbourne Cup place.
The Andre Fabre-trained Au Revoir, a member of the OTI Racing team, was 31st in the latest ballot.
“Au Revoir is right on the borderline for a Cup start at this stage but a win on Saturday would get him over the line,” OTI Racing’s Simon O’Donnell said this week.