Solo Melbourne Cup Heat Results & Final Preview

Last night Sandown Park hosted eight thrilling heats where 64 of the country’s best dogs battled it out to make the final for this year’s coveted $250 000 Group 1 Solo Melbourne Cup.

The quality of the series and the contending greyhounds was again confirmed last night, when all eight heat winners broke 30 seconds over the 515m. The most impressive run of the night went to heat four winner Mr. Moorooduc as he ran the second fastest ever Solo Melbourne Cup heat time.

Heat 1 was won by the $3.20 favourite Lord Ducal with the races two longest-priced outsiders surprising all by filling the second and third placings. Five-and-a-half lengths back was runner-up Oval Express ($24.80) with Premier Moment ($18.20) a further three-quarters of a length back in third. Second favourite at $4.30 Cyclone Ned managed fourth.

The fast improving Lord Ducal didn’t quite match his sensational 29.56 second all-the-way victory over the distance the previous week, but there was no shame in his 29.92 win last night.

Heat 2 saw dual Country Cup winner Remo Rubik ($3.30) claim a one length victory ahead of Dawbilows Heaven ($15.90) with Stoner Bale ($21.10) a further five-and-a-quarter lengths back in third. Winning in a sensational 29.72 seconds, the Geoff Mitchell-trained Remo Rubik did a good job to secure his spot in the final as he once again showed his abundance of early speed for which he is now known for, adding to his near perfect record when starting from box one.

The warm favourite going into the race at $1.90 Queen Lauryn disappointed by pulling in for fourth some twelve-and-a-half lengths behind the winner. Her run last night was a far cry from her brilliant 29.42 second victory over this trip back in October three starts ago, as she found jumping from box seven a hard burden to bear. It was another devastating blow after she missed a start in the Sandown Shootout earlier in the month due to injury.

Heat 3 was won by Prankster ($7.60) in a sharp 29.67 seconds, three-and-a-quarter lengths ahead of Phoenix Night ($17.80) with True Kihael ($8.60) just a neck back for third. It was an impressive run by the winner after many predicted he would not do well from his position running three wide as he secured his sixth victory at Sandown from 10 starts at the track.

It was an extremely disappointing last place finish for Graeme Bate’s Velocette, the $2.00 favourite starting the race after a poor draw inside eventual first and third placegetters held him back. Velocette was one of Bate’s best chances of securing another Melbourne Cup this year.

Heat 4 saw Mr. Moordrooduc ($3.90) come home first in the fastest time of the night and second fastest heat time in the Solo Melbourne Cup 54 year history, a very slick 29.57 seconds, adding another win to his good recent form. The speedy dog enjoyed a great start from the ideal box two and was never threatened as he beat home the $3.70 favourite Birthday Boy by five lengths, with Graeme Bate’s Hayder Bale ($7.40) a further two-and-a-quarter lengths back in third.

Heat 5 was the upset win of the night by the very long-priced Octare ($33.00), two-and-three-quarters-of-a-length ahead of the $2.20 favourite, Graeme Bate’s Grippen Bale, with the usually sensational Cindeen Shelby ($2.70) a further half length back in third. Representing Geelong, Jamie Ennis’ Octare showed surprising skill and speed to claim victory in a strong 29.66 in her first win from 11 attempts at the track. Having made the final field in the Group 1 Macro Meats Crown Classic, Octare will get a chance in the Solo Melbourne Cup final to win her first feature race in 63 career starts.

Heat 6 finally saw one of Graeme Bate’s runners make it through to the final, as the mighty Turanza Bale, $1.50 favourite, defeated Lismore Cup winner Robo Raptor by two-and-a-quarter lengths with Arthur Ritis a further length-and-a-quarter back in third. Turanza Bale, the new The Meadows track record holder, ran a solid 29.78 seconds after the scratching of Octane Show worked to his advantage as he had slow starting dogs either side of him in the race.

The focus at the final will be on Turanza Bale as everyone waits to see if the dog can secure a fourth Melbourne Cup victory for Bate.

Heat 7 again saw the favourite reign supreme as Dyna Lachlan ($1.80) claimed an emphatic seven length victory in 29.64 seconds, ahead of Bora Bale with Galba Jack in third. The favourable box draw of eight suited Dyna Lachlan well as she defeated one of the heats weaker fields of runners.

Heat 8, the final heat of the night, was won by possibly NSW’s best greyhound Take The Kitty ($3.70) in 29.79 just a length ahead of race favourite Flash Of Light ($1.90) with Joanne Monelli in third. Ken Cheetham’s Take The Kitty showed a good early burst of pace to secure her spot as the only interstate dog in the final this year.

The box draw for the final will be held on Saturday night at the Melbourne Cup Ball at Sandown Park and published here at greyhoundraces.com.au, while the $250 000 final will be conducted on Thursday November 26.