Gai Waterhouse is looking to win her first Cox Plate with one of two three-year-olds, Almalad or Wandjina.
The owners of Wandjina have paid the late entry fee to put the colt in the weight-for-age championship but it will be up to the discretion of the Moonee Valley Racing Club if he runs.
As a Group One winner, Almalad is entitled to his place but Wandjina will have to rely on the MVRC committee to gain a start.
Both colts will gallop at the Valley on Tuesday along with many other contenders including another three-year-old, Godolphin’s Sweynesse.
Trainer John O’Shea said he would wait until after the colt has a look at the unique Valley circuit before paying the acceptance fee.
Sweynesse is also yet to win a Group One race but ran third in the Spring Champion Stakes after winning the Gloaming.
There are precedents for both to gain berths with So You Think given a start in 2009 on the back of his Group Three Gloaming win and Shamus Award accepted on his third in last year’s Caulfield Guineas.
Both colts went on to win and Waterhouse believes Wandjina deserves his chance after his third in the Guineas.
Irish horse Adelaide is the only overseas invitee remaining in the race while Tasmanian The Cleaner is exempt from ballot after winning the JRA Cup.
The Aidan O’Brien-trained Adelaide will have his final lead-up gallop at the Werribee quarantine centre while many of his potential rivals are at Moonee Valley.
Premier Sydney trainer Chris Waller has two definite Cox Plate runners – Royal Descent and Sacred Falls – and will make a decision on Foreteller and He’s Your Man after Tuesday’s trackwork session.
Caulfield Stakes winner Fawkner is the $4 Cox Plate favourite ahead of Sacred Falls ($5.50), Adelaide ($6.50), Criterion ($8) and last year’s runner-up Happy Trails ($9.50) completing the group under double figures.
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