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Big Orange Better Than Last Year
Trainer Michael Bell has declared English stayer Big Orange in better shape than when he finished fifth in last year's Melbourne Cup, reports racing.com. "He looks in good shape...He lost 30kg when he came this time last year, this time he only lost 13kg," Bell said. "He is a more experienced horse. That was his first-ever time he had left Newmarket last year, it was a big culture shock for him coming to the other side of the world - he is at home here." Bell added: "He is a huge horse. He is nearly 17 hands and weighs 550 kilograms. Big horses take time to mature and fill their frame, in theory he should be a better horse this year and the form books suggests he is." Big Orange (Duke of Marmalade-Miss Brown to You, by Fasliyev), who finished just 2.5 lengths from Prince Of Penzance in last year's Melbourne Cup, has indeed been in splendid form winning his last two starts, namely the Gr2 Princess of Wales's Stakes (2400m) at Newmarket and the Gr2 Goodwood Cup over the Melbourne Cup distance of two miles. Big Orange has been allocated a weight of 56kg for this year's Melbourne Cup.