The Group 3 MRC Foundation Cup at Caulfield on Saturday will help shape the field for next month’s Caulfield Cup. Of the 19 runners accepted for Saturday’s 2000m contest, 18 remain in the hunt for the Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) on October 16.
Only 2019 Melbourne Cup winner Vow And Declare, runner-up in that year’s Caulfield Cup, is assured of a start in this year’s $5 million race being 15th in the Order of Entry that was released by Racing Victoria on Wednesday. Angel Of Truth (22nd), British-bred Mirage Dancer (23rd) and Kiwi mare Miami Bound (26th) are almost assured of a start, with the field limited to 18 runners plus four emergencies.
Significantly, the MRC Foundation Cup offers the winner a ballot exemption into the Caulfield Cup.
The $4.60 favourite for Saturday’s MRC Foundation Cup, Nonconformist is currently 47th in the entry order, while Tralee Rose (NZ), the $5.50 second pick, is 43rd in the Caulfield Cup order of entry. Realm Of Flowers, who is exempt from the ballot for the Melbourne Cup courtesy of her victory in the Andrew Ramsden Stakes at Flemington in May, sits 39th in the Caulfield Cup entry.
Amade (Ire), Constantinople (Ire), Rostropovich (Ire) and Zeyrek (Fr) are yet to pass any of the vital ballot clauses for the Caulfield Cup.
Mount Popa (Ire) is exempt from the Caulfield Cup ballot courtesy of his Mornington Cup victory earlier in the year, while last year’s winner Verry Elleegant (NZ) is number two on the entry order but is being aimed at the Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m) at The Valley on October 23.
Vow And Declare (fence) is assured of a Caulfield Cup start, picture Racing Photos