2017 Sydney Cup Field & Barriers: Big Duke in 5

April 4th, 2017

A final field of fourteen stayers has been announced for the Sydney Cup 2017 at Royal Randwick this Saturday in Sydney with Big Duke red hot favourite on the nice 52kg light weight.

Big Duke

Chairman’s Handicap winner Big Duke is favourite of the 14 stayers in the 2017 Sydney Cup field this autumn. Photo: Steve Hart.

Day 2 of ‘The Championships’ is headlined by Winx in the Queen Elizabeth Stakes field, but there’s also sure to be plenty of attention on the $2 million Group 1 Schweppes Sydney Cup (3200m).

The two mile classic features a host of in-form gallopers with the Sydney Cup odds at Ladbrokes.com.au dominated by Big Duke chasing a fourth win on the trot.

Weir’s Raven’s Pass gelding won the Launceston Cup in Tasmania before a protest win in the Group 3 NE Manion Cup (2400m) at Rosehill and the runaway two length Group 2 Chairman’s Handicap (2600m) effort last Saturday.

The Chairman’s Stakes has produced more Sydney Cup winners than any other lead-up in the past 30 years including three in the past four years.

Big Duke is chasing the double last accomplished by The Offer (2014) and came up with gate five in the Sydney Cup 2017 Barrier Draw.

Barrier five however hasn’t produced a Sydney Cup champ since Count Chivas back in 1996.

What does play in the favour of the Sydney Cup betting favourite is the big drop from 58kg in the Chairman’s Handicap to just 52kg for Big Duke this weekend.

Craig Williams retains the ride on Big Duke in the Sydney Cup chasing his second win in the race after victory on Ista Kareem back in 2009.

Last year’s Sydney Cup winning trainer Robert Hickmott – Gallante (2016) – chases back-to-back victories this weekend with Assign in barrier nine.

Assign won the Group 3 Neville Sellwood Stakes (2000m) last time out on March 25 and has Damien Oliver aboard on Saturday.

Chris Waller will chase his third Sydney Cup success on Saturday saddling-up the top weight Who Shot Thebarman in barrier four, Libran out wide in barrier 13 and Kinema in barrier seven to be ridden by Blake Shinn, Hugh Bowman and Tim Clark respectively.

Who Shot Thebarman is allocated 57kg and is out to be just the second horse to carry more than 56kg to a Sydney Cup win since 1999 joining Mourayan (58kg in 2013).

Libran ran second in last year’s Sydney Cup results carrying 53kg and rises to 56.5kg for his attempt to go one better with an upset win this autumn.

Godolphin trainer Charlie Appleby from the UK is dually represented in the Sydney Cup field with Penglai Pavilion and Polarisation in barriers six and eleven respectively.

Last year’s winning jockey Kerrin McEvoy, who also won aboard Honor Babe in 2003, is on Penglai Pavilion for his Australian race debut.

Polarisation meanwhile has Corey Brown in the saddle on the 51.5kg light weight.

Other key Sydney Cup horses include the John O’Shea-trained four-year-old Tally and Stuart Webb’s Adelaide Cup winner over the two miles Annus Mirabilis.

For the best Sydney Cup 2017 odds and betting markets this weekend make sure you’ve got an account open and ready to go at Ladbrokes.com.au – home of Odds Boost (T&Cs apply / excluding NSW).


Saturday April 8, 2017 – Randwick Race 8 (3:55pm) 

# Form (Last 10) Horse Trainer Jockey Br. Wgt. Hcp. Rating
1 527255×364 WHO SHOT THEBARMAN (NZ) Chris Waller Blake Shinn 4 57kg 108
2 41112×8746 LIBRAN (IRE) Chris Waller Hugh Bowman 13 56.5kg 107
3 808462×007 ALMOONQITH (USA) David & B Hayes & T Dabernig James Doyle 3 56kg 103
4 02303×3771 TALLY John O’Shea Tommy Berry 8 55kg 105
5 53x9210x71 ASSIGN (IRE) Robert Hickmott Damien Oliver 9 53.5kg 105
6 450×423124 CHANCE TO DANCE (IRE) Stephen Autridge & Jamie Richards Damian Lane 12 53kg 100
7 1×42112111 BIG DUKE (IRE) Darren Weir Craig Williams 5 52kg 104
8 0x77113510 ANNUS MIRABILIS (IRE) Stuart Webb Ms Katelyn Mallyon 1 52kg 98
9 0100×60530 MISTER IMPATIENCE (GB) Michael Moroney Jay Ford 2 52kg 98
10 3x0x85x10x PENGLAI PAVILION (USA) Charlie Appleby Kerrin McEvoy 6 52kg 98
11 70x41x7545 KINEMA (IRE) Chris Waller Tim Clark 7 52kg 97
12 67379×9786 PENTATHLON (NZ) John Wheeler TBD 10 51.5kg 93
13 x52482x542 VENGEUR MASQUE (IRE) Michael Moroney Patrick Moloney 14 51.5kg 93
14 38x2x20x4x POLARISATION (GB) Charlie Appleby Corey Brown 11 51.5kg 88