The leading contenders have drawn wide for Saturday's $2.5million Caulfield Cup, throwing Australia's second greatest handicap race wide open.
Favourite Glencadam Gold for Gai Waterhouse drew horrendously in barrier 21 - the second outside barrier in the field of 18 plus four emergencies - and will probably jump from barrier 17 in the final field.
And second favourite Dunaden, who is also the reigning Melbourne Cup winner, drew even worse in barrier 22.
Bookies immediately eased the pair in betting with Glencadam Gold out to $4.50 from $3.90 but still retaining favouritism, while French horse Dunaden drifted from $7 to $8.
For Waterhouse, the bad barrier draw continues her poor start to the Melbourne spring after her hot favourites Pierro and More Joyous were both beaten last Saturday in the Group One Caulfield Guineas and Toorak Handicap respectively.
And Glencadam Gold's barrier is even worse because he is a natural front-running horse meaning veteran jockey Jim Cassidy will have no choice but to use up vital early energy in order to get the Metropolitan winner across the field as quickly as possible.
Another of the leading contenders in 2010 Melbourne Cup winner Americain also drew poorly in barrier 19 while reigning Caulfield Cup champion Southern Speed also drew wide in barrier 14.
Victoria's top trainer Peter Moody - who is searching for his first Caulfield Cup win - had mixed fortunes at Wednesday's barrier draw with his three runners.
While his Italian import and natural front runner Viola Ici drew poorly in barrier 17, his five-year-old mare Lights of Heaven drew superbly in barrier eight while his other Italian import Sneak a Peek drew barrier 10.
Mark Kavanagh's December Draw - the beaten favourite in last year's race when he was injured in running - drew in the middle of the field in barrier 12.
The big winners from the barrier draw were popular bush gallopers Alcopop and Moudre.
Alcopop, the beaten 2009 Melbourne Cup favourite who is trained at Victor Harbour in South Australia by Jake Stephens, drew ideally in barrier nine and drops 5.5kg following his superb second at weight-for-age in the Group One Caulfield Stakes on Saturday.And Moudre, who is trained at Warrnambool in Victoria by Ciaron Maher, also drew well in barrier five while other horses to draw the prized inside gates were South Australian derby winner Zabeelionaire in one, the Luca Cumani-trained My Quest For Peace in two, Bart Cummings' German import Sanagas in three and the Team Hawkes-trained Niwot in six.
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