GAI Waterhouse believes her quest for an historic eighth Epsom has been made difficult by the compressed weights for feature races, which she's labelled "madness", reports the Daily Telegraph in Sydney. It says: Just five kilos will separate 58kg topweight Sincero and the horses on the raised 53kg limit - including Waterhouse's trio Ecuador, Spurtonic and Ashokan - for Saturday's Group 1 Randwick mile feature. 

Minimum weights were raised from 51kg to 52kg last year, but were as low as 46kg two decades ago. Some major handicaps, however, like the Caulfield and Melbourne Cups, are an exception to the rule with a 50kg minimum.

Waterhouse said the compression of weights for the Epsom "was the most stupid thing you could do".

"The Epsom and Doncaster are great handicaps, but they've been destroyed by compressed weights," said Waterhouse, whose trio are likely to scrape into the final 20-horse field. 

"The spread of weights is too small. The topweight is only 58kg. That's madness.

"Horses like Ecuador and Spurtonic are attempting open-company Group 1 racing for the first time against horses already proven at that level, and there's only a five kilo difference. 

"They should be 46kg or 48kg. There are jockeys riding at that weight. It makes the race more interesting.

"Capping the (minimum) topweight and increasing the bottom-weights the past few years only advantages the horses like More Joyous and your `Shoot Outs'." 

Waterhouse will be sweating on her trio gaining a start, with Ashokan, Ecuador and Spurtonic 65th and equal 70th respectively in the Epsom order of entry. But there are a truckload of horses above them who won't be running. 

Waterhouse said Ashokan had been racing well without winning, while Ecuador and Spurtonic were both stars on the rise.

"I didn't think Ecuador was seasoned enough for The Metropolitan, he's still got a bit of brilliance about him," said Waterhouse, who opted for the shorter Epsom trip. 

"And you need a good 2000m horse to win a mile feature at Randwick." Tommy Berry is expected to ride Ecuador, with Jason Collett booked for Spurtonic. 

Waterhouse opted against starting Our Desert Warrior - the younger full brother to two-time Epsom winner Desert War - with the gelding to be "saved for an easier race". 

The minimum weights were raised because jockeys were no longer as small as they used to be.

Racing NSW head of handicapping Damien Hay said: "We would love to work with a greater spread in the weights, but we don't have that luxury. But why should horses at the top of the scale be penalised due to the minimum weights being raised."