The 2014 Cox Plate final field & barrier draw was announced Tuesday morning, with a maximum field of 14 being accepted for the $3 million weight-for-age race.
The $3 million Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m) will see a full capacity field run at Moonee Valley Racecourse this Saturday, unless there are any scratchings from the race over the week as the committee decided against accepting any emergencies.
Fawkner, race favourite prior to the draw, continues to lead the betting market at Ladbrokes.com.au after drawing well in barrier four. He is available at a price of $4.
The seven-year-old gelding has had a successful spring racing season after coming second in the Group 1 Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m), just a short-neck off Dissident, before winning the Group 1 Caulfield Stakes (2000m) last time out.
Partnered with Nicholas Hall, Fawkner will aim to become the fourth horse since 1983 to win from barrier four.
Adelaide ($6) and Sacred Falls ($6.50) are next in the 2014 Cox Plate odds with Criterion the final single figure hopeful at $9.
Adelaide was the only horse invited to the Cox Plate field, following a successful career overseas that saw the horse win three of his seven career starts and place in the remaining four.
He will have to overcome a wide draw from barrier 13 with Ryan Moore, but was seen having a “fabulous” gallop on the course proper Tuesday morning.
Sacred Falls is one of three horses to represent top trainer Chris Waller (Foreteller and Royal Descent being the other two).
The five-year-old will need a bit of luck come Saturday after finishing fourth, just outside of placings, in three of his four spring campaign starts. He did manage to come home first in the Group 1 George Main Stakes (1600m) last month but he enjoyed a rails run. This time he has drawn wider in barrier nine.
The David Payne-trained Criterion was the final single figure hopeful to come out of the draw after getting a start from barrier six, the most successful Cox Plate gate with five winners since 1983 starting from gate six.
Regular jockey Hugh Bowman has been suspended from the ride following improper riding at Caulfield last weekend, so James McDonald will partner the horse for the first time.
The four-year-old will need a bit of luck on his side after missing out on wins his last time times out, in the Group 2 Hill Stakes (2000m) and Caulfield Stakes (2000m). He is a proven winner over the Cox Plate distance after winning the Group 1 ATC Derby (2400m) in April, so could bring home the win on Saturday.
The 2014 Cox Plate betting has never been harder with so many top-quality runners taking the field.
Open your Ladbrokes.com.au online betting account to get $500 worth of free bets. You’ll be able to back as many Cox Plate runners as you like!
2014 Cox Plate Final Field & Barrier Draw
|1||x4412x4414||SACRED FALLS (NZ)||Chris Waller||Zac Purton||9||59kg|
|2||75316x7x21||FAWKNER||Robert Hickmott||Nicholas Hall||4||59kg|
|3||15×7459333||SIDE GLANCE (GB)||Andrew Balding||Jamie Spencer||7||59kg|
|4||7412×58205||HAPPY TRAILS||Paul Beshara||Damien Oliver||2||59kg|
|5||45389×4318||FORETELLER (GB)||Chris Waller||Tommy Berry||1||59kg|
|6||251×212111||THE CLEANER||Mick Burles||Steven Arnold||14||59kg|
|7||397x4x11x9||GUEST OF HONOUR (IRE)||Marco Botti||Craig Williams||10||59kg|
|8||42811×3722||CRITERION (NZ)||David Payne||James McDonald||6||57.5kg|
|9||x11114x459||SILENT ACHIEVER (NZ)||Roger James||Nash Rawiller||11||57kg|
|10||x4525x2222||ROYAL DESCENT||Chris Waller||Glen Boss||3||57kg|
|11||1×212213||ADELAIDE (IRE)||Aidan O’Brien||Ryan Moore||13||56kg|
|12||1x11x9418||ALMALAD||Gai Waterhouse||Craig Newitt||8||49.5kg|
|13||1×1113||SWEYNESSE||John O’Shea||Chad Schofield||12||49.5kg|
|14||x144x40473||WANDJINA||Gai Waterhouse||Dean Yendall||5||49.5kg|