Chris Waller says the defeat of Preferment in last year’s Melbourne Cup is one of his five biggest disappointments in racing.
Preferment finished 20th behind Prince Of Penzance after Waller had dreams of adding another big trophy to his collection.
“I got the ‘what will I be doing tonight’ thinking happening,” Waller said.
“It was very deflating.
“It would be in the top five disappointments but you quickly get over it.”
A year on and Waller has Who Shot Thebarman and Grand Marshal back for another shot at the Cup after running 11th and 21st respectively last year.
In their Cup lead-up, Grand Marshal beat Who Shot Thebarman in the Moonee Valley Cup, the day stablemate Winx won her second Cox Plate by a record eight length margin.
“They might not be the sharpest two in the race but if we can get their fitness right and their preparation right, they’re in there with a runner’s chance,” Waller said.
“As we saw last year you don’t worry too much about the price.
“As long as they’re there, have a nice run, it’s a Melbourne Cup and they deserve to be there.”
Waller says he would like to see some rain but more importantly that the race is a solidly run 3200 metres.
“We haven’t had that for a couple of years,” Waller said.
“I don’t want them coming home in 36 (seconds), I want them running home in 37-1/2.
“We want the pressure on. We’re realistic because they’re going to struggle to beat those classy horses.
“A top 10 finish is the aim but obviously you’re looking for better than that.
“The owners deserve the chance to be running in the race.
“They’ve been around the mark in the last 12 months and hopefully they’ll get a bit of luck.”
Waller thinks Hartnell and Jameka have the credentials to hold off the European challenge with a leaning to Hartnell who he says is a different horse this preparation and victory would frank the form of Winx who has beaten him twice this spring.