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Every Melbourne Cup runner

Not sure which horse to back? Our racing experts analyse all 24 contenders for the 2012 Melbourne Cup.

PT11M2S http://www.canberratimes.com.au/action/externalEmbeddedPlayer?id=d-28rzl 620 349

Canberra trainer Paul Jones will join the Melbourne Cup party when his horse Onthelookout runs in race nine at Flemington on Tuesday.

Onthelookout is in the field for listed MSS Security Sprint (1200 metres) and Jones is more than happy to join a possible 100,000 people trackside and soak up the vibe of the famous day.

''It's more of a party atmosphere, I think racing takes a bit of a back seat actually,'' Jones said. ''It's exciting to be at the races anywhere [on Cup day] and I'm lucky enough to be in Melbourne.''

It will be Onthelookout's second run this preparation, after finishing sixth to Free Wheeling in the listed Heading Out Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield on October 17.

Jones said it was a step up for the son of Beautiful Crown.

Onthelookout takes on Hot Snitzel, Famous Seamus and Sea Lord, all of which have won at black-type - listed or group - level.

''It's a very, strong race; [He's] probably racing a bit out of his grade, but when you plan these things so far off you're hopeful of a good run,'' Jones said.

''He's working well, so let's hope he puts his best foot forward and does us proud on the day.''

While Jones will be in Melbourne watching Onthelookout, he'll also have runners at Thoroughbred Park in Canberra on Tuesday. Of his three starters, he considers Back to Zero (benchmark 70 handicap 1400m) and Oyster Bell (class 2 handicap 1000m) both serious chances.

''[Back to Zero] is working really well … she shouldn't be too far from it,'' Jones said. ''She's got a lot of problems [with arthritis,] so I'm not sure how many runs we're going to get out of her, but she's primed for a big go first-up.''

TUESDAY

Melbourne Cup Day at Thoroughbred Park, Canberra. Gates open at 9.30am. First race 12.37pm, last 5.25pm. General admission $25.