Some highly rated international horses face having to win a ballot-free event.

Five international horses remain in danger of missing a Melbourne Cup start after the second acceptance deadline passed for next week's A$6.2 million race.

Geelong Cup winner Gatewood, the Herbert Power Stakes winner Shahwardi, Lost In The Moment, Brigantin and Ibicenco were still well outside the top 24 ranked horses yesterday.

As expected, only three stayers among the top 38 ranked were missing.

Sidelined star Manighar and the Lloyd Williams-owned pair Seville and Midas Touch were withdrawn.


When the second acceptance fee was paid, 46 horses were left in Tuesday week's race - one fewer than 2011.

They included Cox Plate runners Ethiopia, Southern Speed and Green Moon. Southern Speed is a confirmed Melbourne Cup runner, while a decision about a start for Green Moon will be made closer to acceptance time.

Of the top 24 ranked horses, 16 are Australian-trained with Peter Moody, Robert Hickmott, Bart Cummings, Gai Waterhouse, the Hawkes training partnership and Michael Kent all boasting two entries.

Final acceptances will be taken at 5pm on Saturday with two races at Flemington that day - the Mackinnon Stakes and the Lexus Stakes - providing a ballot exemption for each winner.

Second acceptances: 1 Dunaden 59kg, 2 Americain 58kg, 3 Southern Speed 54.5kg, 4 Red Cadeaux 55.5kg, 5 Jakkalberry 55.5kg, 6 Winchester 55.5kg, 7 Ethiopia 53.5kg, 8 Voila Ici 55kg, 9 Lights Of Heaven 53kg, 10 Cavalryman 54kg, 11 Sanagas 54kg, 12 Mount Athos 54kg; 13 Maluckyday 53.5kg, 14 Green Moon 53.5, 15 Mourayan 53.5kg, 16 Niwot 53.5kg, 17 Zabeelionaire 52kg, 18 Glencadam Gold 53.5kg, 19 My Quest For Peace 53.5, 20 Tac De Boistron 53.5, 21 Fiorente 53.5kg, 22 Galileo's Choice 53.5kg, 23 Precedence 53kg, 24 Unusual Suspect 53kg.

Not guaranteed a start: 25 Moudre 53kg, 26 Lost In The Moment 53kg, 27 Brigantin 53kg, 28 Prairie Star 53kg, 29 Shahwardi 53kg, 30 Ironstein 52.5kg, 31 Tanby 52.5kg, 32 Sabrage 51kg, 33 Gatewood 52.5kg, 34 Vatuvei 51kg, 35 Permit 52.5kg, 36 Exceptionally 50kg, 37 Ibicenco 51.5kg, 38 Kelinni 51kg, 39 Spechenka 50.5kg, 40 Dame Claire 50kg, 41 Fictional Account 50kg, 42 Reuben Percival 50kg, 43 Excluded 50kg, 44 Peal Of Bells 50kg, 45 Back In Black 50kg, 46 Dare To Dream 50kg.