The Cup runs deep with some genuine flare from abroad, predominantly in the form of Anthony Van Dyck, but without so many visitors as to make it look like a complete raffle, with local formlines familiar to punters still at the forefront.
Familiar names perhaps, but hardly straightforward. The Turnbull is the key local lead up and it was a slowly run, fast-finishing scramble with vast majority finishing within a few lengths of one another.
That takes some sorting out. On a straight read of that form the likes of Warning, Dalasan, Master Of Wine and Toffee Tongue look to have great chances to turn Verry Elleegant over two weeks on but Verry Elleegant is more than just that Turnbull win, she's a bank of big wins, and the pick of them came last prep over the Caulfield Cup distance.
Wet tracker? Perhaps, but more likely just a good horse who wants things to get tougher. The best want the race to go where most can't but they can. It's far easier to keep running in a low-resistance scenario like the Turnbull and it tends to flatter lesser horses - hopefully a high pressure Caulfield Cup sorts some of those lesser horses out and leaves the best horse standing - we think that is Verry Elleegant and we look like getting prices north of 4/1 to find out.
Outside of the Cup each way interest is fairly limited with some races either light on for numbers or at least light on for chances.
The Moonga Stakes throws one up that does strike as a worthwhile gamble at a double figure quote in The Inevitable who gets back to 1400m which can prove a blessing now.
The Inevitable has been okay in a couple of messy races down the straight where he has drawn out on a wing and done enough considering the way things have unfolded for him.
Key dangers Windstorm and Best Of Days look sure to settle behind him and he can make himself mighty tough to get by, particularly now that he gets a chance up to 1400m to find a bit of a flow, with the prospect of a strong pace for him to track.
He's better than a 9-1 chance in a positive scenario like that.
THE MELBOURNE MAIL
Bet Of The Day: Race 9 #7 Verry Elleegant @ $5.50
Each Way Play: Race 8 #7 The Inevitable @ $10.00