The Almanac Trifecta and how Shuffler Down won the raffle


Melbourne Cup Lunch whteboard 2014

The Almanac Melbourne Cup Lunch 2014 final analysis. Check the story below.

Thanks to all those who joined in the fun of picking the Cup trifecta.

We were ably assisted by Englishman Andy Gemmell (Blind Andy) who is one of the great sportslovers of the world. Despite having no sight from birth he travels the world attending major sporting events – the Melbourne Cup, the Ashes, the Australian Open. Andy owns a few nags himself. His favourite jockey is R. Moore.

Then Phillip Smith who is head handicapper for UK racing. He was just off the plane from the US where he had been at the Breeders’ Classic meeting. Phil also put a few in the back of the net for non-League club Altrincham in the FA Cup. He talked us through the European runners, particularly those he has handicapped, particularly Protectionist and My Ambivalence.

VRC Handicapper Greg Carpenter was at his best with a neat precis of the Spring so far and then went through the runners he most fancies which include Signoff, Lucia Valentina and Fawkner. Greg is great to listen to and we thank him for being our chief analyst.

After main course Robbie Griffiths took us through his year, with special reference to Angelic Light and the controversial protest in the Manikato. Safe to say keep a watch on all Robbie’s horses this week. He’s got plenty of chances as they are in great nick and ready to fire. Robbie also liked Signoff in the Cup.

That’s when the fun started.

We had four standouts. And were persuaded to put a couple more in.

So Trifecta 1:

1 3 5 14 22 24

1 3 5 14 22 24


And then there was some more fun with the roughies’

We’re boxing 4 5 7 10 11 12 14 21

Early in the day C Down was sent on a mission to buy raffle ticket

Good punting.

(I’m mucking around with 1, 22 and 24 – for what it’s worth)


About John Harms

JTH is a writer, publisher, speaker, historian. He is publisher and contributing editor of The Footy Almanac and He has written columns and features for numerous publications. His books include Confessions of a Thirteenth Man, Memoirs of a Mug Punter, Loose Men Everywhere, Play On, The Pearl: Steve Renouf's Story and Life As I Know It (with Michelle Payne). He appears (appeared?) on ABCTV's Offsiders. He can be contacted [email protected] He is married to The Handicapper and has three school-age kids - Theo, Anna, Evie. He might not be the worst putter in the world but he's in the worst four. His ambition was to lunch for Australia but it clashed with his other ambition - to shoot his age.


  1. Ripper day as usual.

    5, 11, 21, 22.

  2. There’s a trifecta in those roughie numbers.

  3. Dips, what did you say about Signoff?

  4. A brilliant Almanac afternoon as always.
    There is no better way spend Cup eve, surely.
    Thanks to Messers Carpenter & Smith. Your knowledge of horse-flesh, and powers of recall when talking about said horses, left me in awe!

  5. Dips, how was the team ride home?
    Flynny, I trust you made the 6:18 to Kyneton?

  6. to Clarkefield

  7. Winner. $517. I thought it paid unders.

    Well done all. I think it was Vonny and the girls who put the 12 in?

    Shuffler, which charity?

  8. First 4 therefore paid relatively well.
    Phil said the winner was the pick and the hoop a gun.
    Greg’s declaration that it was a weak Cup was proven by Red Cadeaux and Precedence.
    3rd horse old fashioned NZ stayer.

    Not a vintage cup Day. Beautiful weather. Ordinary racing after Saturday’s feast

    Great function yesterday.

    btw…Beaver claims “they’re trying to retire me” – he’s defiant!!.

  9. Daryl Sharpen says

    Can someone help me, read the story on Wally Beaver in Sat Age; did he invent the trap?

  10. Peter Flynn says

    The chosen charity should be the Yambuk Euchre Playing Appreciation Society.


    The Right Bower

  11. Emma – I think I said it couldn’t win! I was right. Unless of course I said it could win. Can’t remember really.

    Smoke – got home in one piece. Via our glorious public transport. Home made pizza waiting for me in the fridge. Magnificent.

  12. Yes, I would like to concur on the comments about Greg Carpenter’s insights into the race. Fascinating stuff. Feeling sad for him (and all the racing fraternity) today given the fate of Admire Rakti and Araldo.

    Dips, Signoff came closer to winning than Mutual Regard. ’nuff said. But, hey, Ms Howitt’s prediction of Red Cadeaux winning by six lengths wasn’t far off the mark. I believe there were some laughs when she put that out there.

  13. Emma – yes good call by Ms Howitt. Though she did go over the top somewhat with the 6 lengths margin. When it hit the front with about 200 to go it looked very handy. Mutual Regard started mid field and stayed there. Very unexciting gallop.

  14. Great day Monday. Congratulations and thanks to all.

    Had a little each way flutter on Whoshotthebarman and one other in the Cup. Almost got all my money back – an outstanding result (for me).

    Gee these Melbourne Cups seem to come around more quickly as you get older. Already looking forward to next year’s lunch though.

    Cheers, Burkie

  15. c’mon Emma, we can’t blame Greg’s 0.5kg penalty as the straw for the ill-fated Caulfield Cup winner!

  16. Don’t blame Greg at all, Crio. I think he mentioned something along the lines of being ‘damned if he does/damned is he doesn’t’ regarding his handicap for Admire Rakti. His words seem prophetic in hindsight, although I’m sure he wasn’t expecting an outcome like this.

  17. On a lighter note, Monday was a brilliant day on the deck of the Waterside. I’d like to congratulate the ‘stayers’ (four/five in total) who outlasted us all.

  18. Peter Flynn says


    I caught the 6:18pm with PJ Brannigan.



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