Almanac Racing: Caulfield Cup Day 2017

I hope that the Caulfield Cup still has traction outside of rusted-on racing folk.

It’s a great old Handicap which, despite not having the weight range of the past (less than a stone for this edition!) nor the fevered build-up, has retained some profile in the sporting media despite the AFL’s determination to roadblock any outsiders.

But would I be going if I had to pay $65 GA + overs for everything? Not a chance. Here’s their marketing “ploy” – tell me how this will win fans over to our sport long-term…and good luck spotting a horse reference in the promos!

Break With Convention at Caulfield

The 2017 BMW Caulfield Cup Carnival campaign highlights a new approach to racing – breaking the paradigm to make way for a new style of race day.

It’s bold, it’s colourful and it’s breaking the mould.

Experience all that the 2017 BMW Caulfield Cup Carnival has to offer.

It’s Just Not Racing. (MRC website)

As renowned sports analyst Charlie Brown would have said; “Good grief”.

Hopefully the TV coverage which, after all, is our target these days, gets some racing references, although the thought of hearing Bruce if he does free-to-air would push me to 3UZ. As someone who never sees the reportage, I’d be interested in some comments about the relative merits and otherwise of and Ch7 versions. 927 and SEN both have radio rights also.

The most obvious sign of it being racing “season” is a bulging inbox of bookies’ offers. Disclosure – I have a Betfair account and the remnants of an old TAB phone card. I don’t take any of the promotions seriously, fearful of falling in to their web. If I want to bet, I will. Most bookies oncourse will give me the best service and know I’m a $5 mug. But the online promises are quite extraordinary. Beware and be wise.

The Cup (MR8, 4.30pm AEST) itself is a terrific puzzle. The injury to Admire Deus was disappointing and doesn’t improve the form nightmare that confronts punters. Weights are clearly not as important as in bygone times. No featherweight smokeys anymore. Some are, of course, “in better”. Harlem, for example, has drawn a gate, has blinkers on and meets Amelie’s Star on good terms. But is it enough? Some noted judges declared Weiry’s mare at HQ and she duly saluted after the fav, Almandin, went for the most extraordinary Betfair bath late in betting and her staying record is impressive. My knock, though, on both “Amelie” and my other initial fancy, Bonneval, is the draw. The rail goes back out this this week and they simply rarely win from wide draws. It’s enough to discourage me from having a bet. Interesting race and good quality.

The barrier conundrum must be taken into account in the subsequent race also.

The Tristarc (MR9) has the favoured mares starting from the bleachers. Risk them, although it should ensure frantic pace. It actually all falls into the hands (hoofs?) of the toppy, Foxplay. Accept the obvious.

It looks a tough card for punters but I can ensure you that Caulfield’s been a wipeout for bookies in the last decade. Looking for value isn’t always smart. The track plays a certain way and they run straight. If you’re on track, drink wisely. If you’re on the telecast, go with market movers. They win.

Hope you do too.

Good luck!



  1. We’ll be @ Wodonga tomorrow for the Border Ovarian Cancer fundraiser race meeting. Of course there are also races not too far from there with Wagga and Deniliquin both hosting meetings.

    One would be remiss not to mention Avoca has its Cup Meeting tomorrow.

    Happy punting.


  2. I’ll be on track, but prefer Channel 72 over 78. They have butchered the 78 coverage with bookmaker sponsorship and less real analysis.

    I’ll be with Harlem in the Caul Cup. His win in the Naturalism was on par with Jameka’s last year, and forgiving last start when flat. Chad Schofield has turned into a world class rider, and think he can survive the squeeze at the first turn from barrier 1.

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