Greyhound Melbourne Cup: Expert Tips

Our Greyhound Analysts will be previewing the Greyhound Melbourne Cup, sharing their insight to all of the key runners and providing their tips for the big race.

Alongside the expert tips, our Data Scientists have also built a Victorian and Queensland Greyhound Racing Model using a deep data set from Greyhound Racing Victoria and Racing Queensland to produce Greyhound Tips. You will find rated prices for every runner in every race on the card on greyhound Melbourne Cup night.


Melbourne Cup Final – Race 6

Distance: 515m
Track Record: Hooked on Scotch 28.939 (22/11/2019)

Campini – Best 29.26

Ran this time in heat win with a 1st split of 5.11. Amazingly only 2 prior starts from Box 1 for 2 wins. 36 career starts for 15 wins and 9 placings. 1 win and 2 placings from 3 starts over this trip.

He was the biggest winner out of the box draw. He does his best racing from inside draws. He tends to go hard left out of the boxes and shows some early dash so obviously this is his optimum draw. I still don’t think he’s good enough to win the race but he does look a nice place bet given he should get every chance to get the best run through at the first turn.

Get it Gizmo – Best 29.26

Ran this time in heat win with a 1st split of 5.15. Only 2 prior runs from this draw for 1 win and 1 unplaced run but the win was in the Group 1Top Gun at The Meadows earlier this month. 10 wins and 9 placings from 21 career starts.

He was super in his heat run. Once he found clear galloping room not long after box rise the race was over in a matter of strides. He will need to go to another level here and the inside draw is a big positive. He looks to map similar to Campini so he cannot afford to make any early mistakes. I think he will find a few better here and I am looking elsewhere.

Whiskey Riot – Best 29.26

Won his heat in 29.33 with a 1st split of 5.11. Been in the money in his past 6 starts. Runner up in the Group 1 Adelaide Cup and in The Shootout here last start. 2 wins and 4 seconds from 7 starts this draw. 3 wins and 2 seconds from 5 starts over this trip.

He has been in superb form narrowly losing to Hooked On Scotch twice in the Adelaide Cup and in The Shootout. He was all heart in his heat win and he looks well drawn here, he is a reliable beginner and should be able to find a forward position. It wouldn’t shock me at all if he can win this prestigious event.

Flynn – Best 29.08

Won his heat in 29.26 with a 1st split of 5.08. 2 wins and 3 seconds from 6 starts this draw. 4 wins and 2 seconds from 8 starts over this trip. 2019 Bill Collins Speed Star winner.

He got the job done in his heat which was a very strong heat on paper. He used the inside draw to perfection but the squeeze draw in this final has done him no favours. Since arriving at the Thompson kennel he has been beginning more reliably but he would need everything to go right, especially in the run to the first turn in order to win this.

Western Envoy – Best 29.32

Won his heat in 29.58 (slowest of all 8 heats) with a 1st split of 5.22 (slowest). 2 wins and 1 second from 3 starts this draw. Second most experienced chaser over this track and trip with 13 starts for 5 wins and 4 placings.

He got the job done in his heat run coming from behind. He did find one of the easier heats so I am not very confident he can score another win here but his odds will be too high on the exchange to consider a lay bet. I prefer others.

Jaro Bale – Best 29.43

Won his heat in 29.50 with a 1st split of 5.17. 1 win and 2 placings from 5 starts from Box 6. Most experienced in field over this track and trip with 14 starts for 4 wins and 7 placings. 10 of 14 career wins from Boxes 1-4.

He took full advantage of the inside draw in his heat but this is a lot harder. The draw has done him no favours and he may encounter some trouble at the first turn. He would probably need to bomb the start and cross over to the rails to be any chance of winning this.

Oakvale Beauty – Best 29.38

Won his heat in 29.41 with a 1st split of 5.12. 2 wins from 5 starts over this trip. Group 3 SA Oaks winner at Angle Park in September. Only 1 start from this draw for 1 second.

She is versatile enough to perform from wide draws but she is another in the category of struggling to cross her rivals on her inside and she may have nowhere to go on the first turn. Place hopes look best and even that may be beyond her.

Hooked on Scotch – Best 28.94 (Track Record)

Ran this time in heat win with a 1st split of 5.11. Youngest chaser in field. 2019 Adelaide Cup, Geelong Cup and Speed Star winner. Won from this Box in heat run (his only start from Box 8). 10 wins and 4 placings from 15 career starts

He incredibly broke the track record in his heat win and did so on a cold night with a head wind in the straight and from the extreme draw. He again has box 8 here which suits him to a tee. Although he may have to begin a little better than his heat run as he will find it more difficult to cross these rivals cleanly at the first turn.

He has freakish ability so I have faith he may be even able to turn it up another notch here. He has shown he doesn’t need to lead to win races and with that versatility, I am keen to back him here.

Shima Shine – 1st Emergency – Best 29.20

Runner up in heat in 29.35. 11 wins and 3 placings from 16 career starts.

He has shown some signs of needing a break in his last two runs. If he got a run here he would need to lead early and hold on to win. Has a 5.01 1st split PB here.

Simon told Helen – 2nd Emergency – Best 29.45

Runner up in heat in 29.41. 10 career starts for 5 wins and 3 seconds. 1 win from 4 starts here.

He has a stack of upside and will be a dog to follow going into the new year. This looks too tough for him at this stage of his career.


1st – Hooked On Scotch (8)
2nd – Campini (1)
3rd – Whiskey Riot (3)

Betting Strategy

BACK (WIN) – Hooked On Scotch (8) > $2 (2 units)

BACK (PLACE) – Campini (1) > $1.85 (2 units)

By the Numbers

Feral Franky (Career Prizemoney $412,410)

Previous Speed Star Match Race Times at Sandown Park

May 5th 2019: 5.23, 18.79, 2920, Run Home 10.41
September 15th 2019: 5.33, 19.09, 29.69, Run Home 10.60 (heavy track)

Best Run in Full Field – October 31st 2019: 5.18, 18.72, 29.075, Run Home 10.35

Sennachie (Career Prizemoney $520,500)

Recent Trial – Preparation for Melbourne Cup November 17th: 5.03, 18.59, 29.13 Run Home 10.54

Best Run in Full Field – March 21st 2019: 5.11, 18.77, 29.42, Run Home 10.65

Speed Star Match Race September 15th 2019: 5.13, 18.90, 29.55 Run Home 10.65

The Box Draw

Feral Franky (Box 1): “The Feral” has come up trumps with the inside draw, he does his best racing close to the rail and he may be able to save some crucial ground in the run by hugging the paint. This should allow him to click through the gears nicely and produce a powerful finishing burst.

 Sennachie (Box 3): Although I would have preferred him from the inside draw, the outside draw presents no problems for him either. He has produced some great career runs from outside draws and Box 3 is hardly a hindrance.

He should be zooming to the lead anyway and looks a certain leader based on the above times. If he can somehow cross and lead, and also halt Feral Franky some momentum going into the first turn this could be crucial to setting up the win.

The Early Speed

Feral Franky: The best he has ever gone to the first marker is 5.18 but this was in a full field of extremely high quality. In two Speed Star Match races he has only managed 5.23 and 5.33 with the latter being on a wet track. On the same night, Sennachie went 0.20 quicker (5.13).

Sennachie: Even from the wide draw in the Melbourne Cup Heat, he was still able to run 5.11 to the first marker despite being posted wide. With the supplemental information of his recent trial where he went 5.03 early there isn’t much doubt he will be leading comfortably to the first peg. I would want him to be 2 lengths clear to be comfortable he can win.

The Mid Race Section

Feral Franky: He has a PB run to the back section of 18.72. In this match race even if he were to run a similar time he is most likely going to be anywhere from 2 to 4 lengths off the lead.  If he is any closer than 2 lengths off at this marker then he might be close enough to win.

Sennachie: He should be rolling along out in front and he will need to replicate his recent trial run of 18.59 to the back in order to set up victory here. If he can be 4 lengths clear I will be watching with confidence that he will hold on and win.

The Finish

Feral Franky: His run times of 10.41 in a Speed Star Match Race and 10.35 in his PB run here are breathtaking. There are not many dogs capable of such run home times. This dog is a machine and there is never much variance to his form, he is as consistent as they come.

He will be roaring home here and if we assume he is capable of a 10.40 run home time here then he may be able to reel in Sennachie right at the death. Sennachie’s PB run home time is 10.54 (2.5 lengths slower than “The Feral”). He was also bumped in the straight last week which affected his run home time so this run is irrelevant from a data perspective.

Sennachie: Even though his Speed Star Match Race run in September was disappointing from a clock perspective, he still managed to find a way to win and he was very underdone going into the race. He hadn’t raced in 50 days and the track was heavy.

Given his recent 29.13 trial it shows that he is still very close to producing his best. He had no luck in the Melbourne Cup heat from a wide draw and in the start prior he took a tumble in The Top Gun whilst vying for the early lead. With this format I do expect him to be tiring late but I believe he can hold on and win.

Summary and Betting Strategy

This match race concept with two of Australia’s best and most popular greyhounds is a brilliant idea and showcase for Melbourne Cup Night. The atmosphere on track with the huge crowd should be incredible to witness.

I really do think this could be a really close match race with Sennachie establishing an early lead to the first marker and to the middle section with Feral Franky roaring home late. I believe Sennachie can hold on here in a close finish by 1 length.

BACK (WIN) – Sennachie (2 units at > $1.80)

Bold Trease Final – Race 8

Distance: 715m
Track Record: Miata 41.17 (17/5/2012)

Boom Down – Best 41.63

Ran this time in heat win with a 6.46 1st split. 3 wins and 4 placings from 10 starts this draw. 1 win and 3 placings from 4 starts over this track and trip. 2019 Sydney Cup winner and place getter in Top Gun Stayers at The Meadows earlier this month.

There isn’t much doubt that he would be the strongest and quickest dog in the race but his box manners are a real worry here. He tends to drop out the back no matter where he is drawn. My main concern here is him actually beginning better from the inside but then not having that early zip to maintain his spot.

I could see him getting checked and losing key momentum. By this stage of the race and with a full field he could be a long way off the lead. From the cherry draw, he cannot be dismissed and isn’t a lay proposition but he is no value either.

Slick Raven

No best winning time. Ran 42.13 in heat which was her first race start at the track. 1st split of 6.30. 1 second and 2 thirds from 4 starts this draw. Least experienced chaser in the field (22 starts).

She looked a little lost on the turns here last week so she will no doubt be much improved here having her second race start over this track and trip. I still don’t think she can win this at this stage of her career but looks to have a stack of upside in staying races across the summer.

Blue Moon Rising – Best 41.79

Ran best time in heat win with a 1st split of 6.01 (quickest). 5 starts over this track and trip for 1 win and 2 placings. This is his best-performed box with 4 wins and 6 placings from 17 starts. Has been in the Top 3 in his last 7 starts. Dual Group 1 winner over 725m at The Meadows.

He would be the most honest dog in Australia. Even after 100+ starts he is still racing in career best form whilst most of his littermates are enjoying retirement and life on a couch. He looks the early leader here and he may take some catching. I am hoping he can get swallowed up late against these rivals from a punting viewpoint but he will certainly be in it for a long way.

Torando Tears – Best 41.20

Won his heat in 42.10 with a 1st split of 6.15. Has recorded 9 wins over this track and trip which is equal to the entire rest of field. 4 wins and 1 second from 7 starts this draw. Multiple Group race winner.

He just stuck his nose out at the right time in his heat win. After 200 metres in his heat I thought he has landed in a perfect spot that he would just explode mid race and win by a cricket pitch. But he doesn’t seem to be the same dog from a year ago, it would seem he is almost trying to find trouble and he can be excruciating to watch.

I am not willing to lay him as he is too unpredictable but I just cannot back him either.

Rajastan – Best 41.90 (24/5/19)

Runner up in heat running 42.10 with a 1st split of 6.06. 5 wins and 6 placings from 6 starts from this draw. 3 wins and 2 placings from 7 starts over this trip. 2019 Group 1 Sandown Cup winner over this distance.

He is still racing well but even his trainer has gone on record to say that there are two of him. One who will chase all day and the other who can be very unpredictable. He also doesn’t quite seem to be running out the 700 metres as well as he used too and I am looking elsewhere.

Blazing Cartier – Best 41.68

Ran this time in heat win with a 1st split of 6.04. Never missed a placing in 7 starts over this track and trip (3 wins and 4 placings). Undefeated in 2 starts from this draw. 8 wins and 12 placings from 29 career starts.

She just seems to be getting better with each run since joining the Robert Britton camp and the kennel will be looking to go back to back after Barcali won the race last year.

She looks to map well here as Box 7 and Box 8 shouldn’t give her any early grief and Rajasthan could give her a nice cart into the race. Even if she has to track wide at the first turn she may be at full momentum which will be important here in making a mid-race move and holding on to win.

Midnight Mystery – Best 41.91 (20/1/19)

Second in heat in 41.85 with a 1st split of 6.31. Has been in the money in his past 8 starts. Only 1 win over this track and trip from 17 starts but with 9 placings. Has never won from this box in 9 attempts.

The old veteran is still racing in great form. He caught the eye late in his heat run as he likes to track wide in his races and go around dogs. He was forced to go underneath other dogs which is against his racing pattern but he hit the line really well. Place chances look best here.

Just Terms

No best winning time. Runner up in heat in 42.00 with a 1st split of 6.26. This is only her second start over course and distance here. Only 1 start from this draw in her career (unplaced). 12 wins and 13 placings from 34 career starts.

I thought she was very unlucky in her heat run where she was held up and lost some momentum twice and she ended up going past short-priced favourite Ella Enchanted in the closing stages. She also looks suited to the wide draw as she needs some breathing room early. She looks a great value play here.

Angry Trip – 1st Emergency – Best 42.05 (2/9/19). 

Ran third in heat in time of 41.86 with a 1st split of 6.17. 1 win and 4 placings from 7 starts over this trip.

He is very honest and rarely runs a bad race but this looks beyond him.

Blue Shadows – 2nd Emergency – Best 41.69

3rd in heat running time of 41.86 with a 1st split of 6.06. 10 starts over this trip for 3 wins and 4 placings.

He has been hard to catch lately, his best is capable of winning Group races but his poor runs can be awful.


1st – Blazing Cartier (6)
2nd – Just Terms (8)
3rd – Boom Down (1)

Betting Strategy

BACK (WIN) – Blazing Cartier (6) > $4.2 (2 units)

BACK (WIN) – Just Terms (8) > $14 (1 unit)

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