Welcome to our Melbourne Cup 2021 guide in a year that presents a very interesting puzzle for punters. We’re in unprecedented times due to COVID-19, which had already impacted the number of international horses traveling to Australia for the race that stops a nation. On top of this, the number of international raiders looks to have been further reduced by new equine safety measures introduced by Racing Victoria and the VRC to combat the race’s high fatality rate.
We’ll update this page often in the leadup to the 2021 Melbourne Cup, detailing new contenders for the race as they emerge.
We’ve also got a similar guide to all the contenders in this year’s $15 million Everest. Check it out here!
Melbourne Cup odds displayed are from Australia’s favourite bookmaker, TopSport (odds updated 15th September).
Melbourne Cup 2021: The Contenders
Spanish Mission: $8 with TopSport
Five-year-old trained by Andrew Balding in the UK and owned by US syndicate Team Valor, who are determined to make the trip despite the obstacles. Ran a narrow second to Stradivarius in the Group 2 Lonsdale Cup over two miles.
RECORD BREAKER 🏆🏆🏆
Stradivarius comes out on top in a thrilling duel with Spanish Mission in the Group 2 @WbysHamilton Lonsdale Cup Stakes, earning the colt a record third victory in the race under @FrankieDettori for John & Thady Gosden 👏 pic.twitter.com/z4MhXaor45
— York Racecourse (@yorkracecourse) August 20, 2021
Incentivise: $9 with TopSport
After showing so much potential, proved himself at Group 1 level with a tough win in the Makybe Diva Stakes. Now $9 despite being lugged with a larger-than-expected 55.5kg for the Cup.
INCENTIVISE WINS THE MAKYBE DIVA STAKES!
Welcome to the GROUP 1 club! pic.twitter.com/a8FGKQRkTK
— 7HorseRacing 🐎 (@7horseracing) September 11, 2021
Dawn Patrol: $15 with TopSport
Four-year-old gelding from Aidan O’Brien who is now in the Robert Hickmott / Lloyd Williams stable. Well performed at the distance with a win over two miles in September 2020. Had Australian debut in the Group 2 Feehan Stakes.
👏 Fine ride Seamie Heffernan
⭐️ Related to Pour Moi, Dawn Patrol was sixth in the St Leger & returns to winning ways to capture the €50,000 Comer Group International Loughbrown Stakes giving the jockey & trainer Aidan O’Brien a treble at the @curraghrace pic.twitter.com/a11AqBYPBd
— Racing TV (@RacingTV) September 27, 2020
Twilight Payment: $16 with TopSport
The winner of last year’s brutally-run Cup for Joseph O’Brien. Had had a decent year back in the UK, and ran second in the Group 1 Irish St Leger on September 12th.
Ebor Handicap winner Sonnyboyliston went on to win last night’s Irish St Leger over last year’s Melbourne Cup winner Twilight Payment.
Both horses could possibly be seen in Australia this spring. pic.twitter.com/ys2l9FQSZk
— Racing.com (@Racing) September 13, 2021
Realm Of Flowers: $17 with TopSport
Five-year-old mare for Anthony and Sam Freedman who is already guaranteed a Cup start after a dominant win in the Andrew Ramsden (2800m) at Flemington. Returned in the Feehan Stakes.
“You’re in the Cup in November.”
Realm Of Flowers books her Melbourne Cup ticket with a dominant win in The Andrew Ramsden. pic.twitter.com/fJMmLSb94X
— 7HorseRacing 🐎 (@7horseracing) May 15, 2021
Verry Elleegant: $18 with TopSport
Aussie champ who returned with a second in the G1 Winx Stakes behind Mo’unga before capturing her ninth Group 1 win in the George Main Stakes. Into $18 off that.
WHAT A WIN!
VERRY ELLEEGANT WINS HER NINTH GROUP 1 IN THE GEORGE MAIN STAKES! pic.twitter.com/hYjNXlKv11
— 7HorseRacing 🐎 (@7horseracing) September 18, 2021
Explosive Jack: $19 with TopSport
Four-year-old for Maher and Eustace and winner of both the ATC Derby and South Australian Derby in the autumn. Returned in the G1 Makybe Diva.
Gold Trip: $19 with TopSport
Four-year-old French stayer with reasonable form at home, now in Australia for Maher and Eustace. Ran fourth in the Arc De Triumph in 2020. Will be pointed toward the Cox Plate.
🇫🇷 SOTTSASS first past the post in the 2020 Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe
But there’s a stewards’ inquiry including for the winner…
What do you think?
— World Horse Racing (@WHR) October 4, 2020
While you’re here, look back over the history of The Race That Stops A Nation with our 8 Unforgettable Melbourne Cup moments.
Also, check out our guide to all the contenders in this year’s $15 million Everest.
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