Posted: 24 October, 2016
by Racing Newsroom
Big Names Withdraw From The Melbourne Cup
Hartnell one of 32 horses still in contention for a start
Three of the top 24 ranked horses today pulled out of contention for the Emirates Melbourne Cup 2016, the most notable being Chris Waller-trained Preferment who won the 2015 Turnbull Stakes.
The United States was another withdrawal after winning this weekend's Group 2 Schweppes Crystal Mile (1600m) along with Tarzino.
Meanwhile Hartnell remains in the field after being beaten into a distant second by WINX in the Cox Plate. Hartnell is one of seven Godolphin horses on track for a start in the race that stops a nation along with Scottish, Qewy, Oceanographer, Tally, Secret Number and Beautiful Romance.
The field is currently headed by Jameka as she prepares to emulate Ethereal and complete the Caulfield Cup-Melbourne Cup double. Other horses assured of a start include Wicklow Brave, Curren Mirotic and Heartbreak City.
With Preferment withdrawing the top weighted gallopers are Big Orange and Our Ivanhowe with 56kg, which means all weights will be raised by 1kg come final acceptance time.
That final acceptance for the Emirates Melbourne Cup will be taken at 4.30pm on Saturday 29 October, following the running of the Lexus Stakes.