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Melbourne Cup Tips - UK tipster gives two to back at Flemington

Avilius

UK tipster Brian Healy gives his two against the field for the 'race which stops a nation', the Melbourne Cup at Flemington.

One of the global highlights of the horse racing calendar, the Melbourne Cup is an iconic race with a rich history stretching back some 170 years, and Australia’s most prestigious race boasts a rich roll-of-honour, with triple-winner Makybe Diva one of the most notable.

Another typically competitive field will assemble for the latest renewal of the Melbourne Cup, where the winner will scoop almost $4.25m, making this race one of the most lucrative and valuable contests in the world.

With such a wealthy prize purse on offer, it is little wonder that the latest running of this fantastic contest has attracted another powerful field, and Brian Healy picks out his two against the field for the feature.

European raiders dominated last year’s showpiece, which was ultimately won by Joseph O’Brien’s Rekindling; but it could be a much less fashionable name in the European training stakes who could walk away with their biggest prize to date, and Ian Williams’ MAGIC CIRCLE could post a big effort.

The Makfi gelding has plenty of smart winning form to his name, and this two-mile trip will present no issue to the six-year old who has travelled over from Williams’ Worcestershire base to contest this classy race.

Formerly trained by Ralph Beckett, for whom he won six times in handicap company, he has thrived under the care of Williams and he is 2-2 in starts for his current handler, striking gold in the Chester Cup with a six lengths’ victory over Fun Mac, and then posting a similar winning margin over Red Verdon in the Group Three Henry II Stakes.

That contest also featured the likes of Weekender, Mount Moriah, Montaly and Sheikhzayedroad; but while he hasn’t been seen out since, he’s been trained for this contest and his record when fresh is impresssive.

His Chester Cup win came on the back of a seven-month absence, while he has also struck earlier in his career following absences of 199 days, 83 days and 64 days; he has also finished a close runner-up following a 191 day absence, so returning here from a further five-month break needn’t be a concern.

He is drawn high which is a slight concern given his come-from-behind style; but if the breaks come at the right time, then it isn’t hard to see him taking a hand and while he probably does need to improve he could well continue his resurgence under his shrewd handler and post a big effort.

History and the poor record of UK-based runners in the race are both against Magic Circle, but he could be worth chancing to break the curse of British runners in the race.

Godolphin meanwhile have a strong team assembled for this race, and the pick may be AVILIUS who steps up markedly in trip, but the Pivotal gelding looks an ideal type to cope with the rigours of this race.

Formerly trained in France by Andre Fabre, the four-year old boasts some useful form having won a Listed contest as a three-year old and running up against the likes of Eminent and Cracksman, latterly when finding only that last-named rival too strong in the 2017 Prix Niel.
Gelded following a poor run back at Chantilly behind Garlingari, he has since left France and pitched up with leading Australian handler James Cummings, for whom he is 4-5 in his starts with his sole defeat coming behind the imperious Winx at Moonee Valley last month in the Cox Plate.

The Bart Cummings winner represents a strong recent tie-in with that race with regards to Melbourne Cup champions; and the Cox Plate has thrown up four winners of this contest in recent years; only Avilius and Rostropovich contest this latest Melbourne Cup renewal having contested the Cox Plate latest.

He drops back into a handicap for this latest outing, and while it has to be taken on trust that those exertions haven’t left a mark, he could well improve for the step up to this longer trip which he tries for the first time.

He looked strong at the end of his Bart Cummings win over 1m 4f, and boasting course-winning form he should be involved in the finish if the longer trip doesn’t present an issue.


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Melbourne Cup Tips - UK tipster gives two to back at Flemington

Brian Healy gives his two against the field for the 'race which stops a nation', the Melbourne Cup at Flemington.

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