Estimate: among 31 overseas entries for the Melbourne CupPICTURE: Edward Whitaker (racingpost.com/photos)
Estimate heads British entry for Melbourne Cup
THE QUEEN'S Gold Cup winner Estimate and popular stayer Red Cadeaux spearhead a strong British team among a total entry of 148 for the A$6.2 million Emirates Melbourne Cup on November 4.
If Estimate was to contest the race that stops a nation she would become the second Melbourne Cup runner for her owner, who watched Arabian Story carry her colours to sixth back in 1997.
The Sir Michael Stoute-trained mare, who finished runner-up in the Lonsdale Cup at York last month, and dual runner-up Red Cadeaux are joined by the likes of globetrotter Side Glance, the Marco Botti-trained duo Dandino and Seismos and Godolphin's Goodwood Cup winner Cavalryman.
Ireland's best hopes appear to rest with Lonsdale Cup winner Pale Mimosa, trained by Melbourne Cup-winner Dermot Weld, and Johnny Murtagh's Mutual Regard and Royal Diamond.
A total of 31 overseas entries were received for the race on Tuesday morning, including the return of Japanese runners for just the second time since Delta Blues and Pop Rock dominated in 2006, with Admire Rakti and Bande among the nation's possible runners.
"The Emirates Melbourne Cup is the world's premier staying race and the quality of the local and international entries for this year's race is really pleasing," said Racing Victoria's Greg Carpenter.
He added: "This year marks the changing of the guard in many ways with recent winners Dunaden, Americain and reigning champion Fiorente now retired to stud, the latter two here in Victoria.
"We have entries from seven countries and are excited to welcome Japanese participation for the first time since 2010, along with renewed interest from German trainers.
"The Australian-trained contingent, led by Gai Waterhouse's Sydney Cup winner The Offer, carries much promise and the stage is set for yet another brilliant renewal of the Emirates Melbourne Cup."
As well as ante-post favourite The Offer, 2012 winner Green Moon and last year's Caulfield Cup winner Fawkner - who are among 12 entries for four-time Cup-winning owner Lloyd Williams - feature in the home team's entry.
Weights for the Melbourne Cup will be revealed on Tuesday, September 16, with first acceptances for the race due on Tuesday, October 7.