The Roar
The Roar


Melbourne Cup 2015: Weather report and track conditions – dry for the Cup!

The accusations thrown at thoroughbred breeders are unjust. (AAP Image/Dean Lewins)
Roar Guru
2nd November, 2015
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Latest Update 12:50pm – Tuesday November 3rd

The track has been upgraded to a Good 3 at 12:50pm. The means the track is slightly firmer and will suit horses that do better on dryer tracks. That suits the favourite Fame Game and a host of others – see below.


Latest Update 8:40am – Tuesday November 3rd

The rail has been moved out two metres in an attempt to eliminate the fast lane that occurred during Derby Day.

Flemington Racecourse Track Manager Mick Goodie predicts the surface to even out throughout Tuesday morning.

Update 8:00am – Tuesday November 3rd

Concerns have been raised about the Flemington track this morning following an inspection of the track last night. Derby day showed Flemington had a lot of issues with its track bias with all winners coming along the rail and that looks like it will be the case today with a large section of the track tipped to be slow.

Currently the track is rated a Good 4 with the chance it may be upgraded to a Good 3 later in the day, but from about 10-14 metres off the rail there is a ‘slow lane’  which will likely cause this to be inferior ground giving an advantage to horses who stick closer to the fence.


More 2015 Melbourne Cup
>> 2015 Melbourne Cup news
>> 2015 Melbourne Cup preview and top tips
>> 2015 Melbourne Cup runner-by-runner guide
>> Tips for all 10 races on Melbourne Cup day
>> Melbourne Cup weather


If there was ever a great equaliser in the sport of racing – outside of weights and barriers – it would have to be the weather. It has the ability to change the complexion of a race completely. A bit of rain brings the horses with heavier weights back to the field, and the wet-track specialists suddenly have to be considered.

This year the Bureau of Meteorology have predicted a 60 per cent chance of showers for Monday, however no showers are forecast for the Tuesday.

There may be enough rain to change the track rating from a Good track to a Soft track, with a Heavy track out of consideration as there won’t be enough rain based on the predicted forecast.

The rainfall from 9am this morning was just 0.2mm, not enough to affect the track at all. As it currently stands, the track is rated a Good 4.

For those unfamiliar with what that means, below is a short summary of what the track rating system means.

Firm 1 – Dry, hard track.
Firm 2 – Firm track.
Good 3 – Track with good grass coverage and cushion.
Good 4 – Track with some give in it.
Soft 5 – Track with a reasonable amount of give in it.
Soft 6 – Moist but not badly affected track.
Soft 7 – More rain-affected track that will chop out.
Heavy 8 – Rain-affected track that horses will get into.
Heavy 9 – Wet track getting into a squelchy area.
Heavy 10 – Heaviest category track, very wet, towards saturation.


But the most important question remains, what does that mean for the horses?

2015 Melbourne Cup field and preferred track condition:

1. Snow Sky – Looks to handle any type of ground, would probably prefer a Good track though.

2. Criterion – Handles all surfaces, but will come into strong consideration if the track is Soft.

3. Fame Game – The favourite hasn’t raced on anything outside a Good track, so there will be some question marks surrounding him if the track isn’t rated Good.

4 Our Ivanhowe – Already receiving some market support, will be right in it if the track is rated Soft after never being out of the quinella in three attempts on a surface rated Soft.

5. Big Orange – Looks to prefer good ground but does have one win on a Soft track.

6. Hartnell – Handles all ground, but will excel if the track is rated in the Soft range come Tuesday.


7. Hokko Brave – Likes a good track, has raced once on a Soft track for a second placing which is handy.

8. Max Dynamite – Handles all ground, won the Londsdale Cup (3300m) on Soft ground.

9. Red Cadeaux – Handles the good and Soft well, can he break the duck in the Melbourne Cup?

10. Trip to Paris – Would probably prefer the track to be Good, but does have a win on the Soft surface.

11. Who Shot Thebarman – Looks to prefer the going on a Good track, but will handle a Soft track.

12. Sky Hunter – No worries on any surface, but the wetter the track is the more he will be brought into the conversation.

13. The Offer – A Heavy track would be the only way I could see The Offer winning the Melbourne Cup. Does handle the going on most surfaces though.

14. Grand Marshall – Brought into consideration on a wet track, can handle any surface though. Won the Sydney Cup (3200m) on a Soft surface.


15. Preferment – No problems on any surface, had wins this campaign on both Soft and Good tracks.

16. Quest For More – Looks to enjoy a Good surface, hasn’t raced on a Soft track and is unplaced from one start on a Heavy track.

17. Almoonqith – Will handle a Good or Soft track.

18. Kingfisher – Handles Good and Soft but looks to prefer the Soft going, being out of the trifecta just once in three attempts.

19. Prince of Penzance – Raced mainly on Good tracks, has had two starts on a Soft track for one placing.

20. Bondi Beach – Handles everything, and hasn’t been out of a quinella in five starts.

21. Sertorius – Looks to prefer a Soft track.

22. The United States – Will prefer a Good track, is unplaced in one start on a Soft track but does have a win on a Heavy track.


23. Excess Knowledge – Will handle a Good or Soft track.

24. Gust of Wind – Has a 50 per cent win rate on a Soft track, with a bit of rain will come into consideration.