Three winners on Derby Day might sound impressive, but when all of them are odds-on it’s a big like saying that you’ve predicted the upcoming election outcomes of safe seats like Gellibrand, Scullin and Higgins (actually, Higgins could turn out to be a bit more interesting that that).

So, great as it was to see Exceedingly Good, Weekend Hussler, and Divine Madonna greet the judge, I didn’t do nearly as well as some of my fellow Birdcage detainees, who – fascinated by a novel name, or indeed, by another not so novel fascinator – turned good money into small fortunes without even a casual glance at a form guide or Carson Cressley, let alone Crikey, where spring so far looks something like this:

  • Week 1: Turnbull States day. Bet $50, return $29.30
  • Week 2: Caulfield Guineas day. Bet $29, return $10
  • Week 3: Caulfield Cup Day. Bet $56, return $19 (consisting of $13 from Spectacular Saint and money back for the Cup trifecta after the scratching of Maldivian)
  • Week 4: Cox Plate Day. Bet $61, return $18
  • Week 5: Derby Day. Bet $61, return $26

But a Cup winner usually means enough money to buy a round of drinks, or if you’re really lucky, to service a week’s worth of the additional debt incurred by any interest rate ride. And while none of the contenders has a mortgage on the event, I’m going for Princess Coup – a wonderful second in the Mackinnon after her Caulfield Cup placing – to beat veteran two-miler Gallic and the deserved favourite Master O’Reilly ($6 dollar box). If you can stretch your exotics budget further, include Mahler and Zipping to make it a five way box ($30 for a half unit is the Crikey method).

Meanwhile, put $5 on the nose on these ten contenders:


RACE 1: (12) Viennese
RACE 2: (2) Manna Miss
RACE 3: (7) Completion
RACE 4: (4) Juste Momenete
RACE 5: (9) Swirly Dream
RACE 6: (3) Belcentra
RACE 7: (23) Princess Coup, (4) Gallic, (11) Master O’Reilly
RACE 8: (13) Moreton Bay
RACE 9: (7) Rubiton Raider
RACE 10: (1) Tears I Cry