Melbourne Cup: How To Choose Your Winning Horse


Horse racing enthusiasts in Australia get very excited in the last quarter of every year because of the beginning of the Melbourne Cup. This annual event commencing every first Tuesday of November and concluding eight days after, is Australia’s most awaited horse racing competition.

This annual tradition which debuted in 1861, with 17 horses racing in front of 4,000 spectators, was Frederick Standish’s idea. Standish, more famously known as Captain Standish, was the chief commissioner of the police of Victoria at that time. Initially, the track was over two miles, but with some changes, it’s now shortened to 3,200 metres.

Dubbed the ‘race that stops a nation,’ the Melbourne Cup takes place at Flemington Racecourse in Melbourne. Considered the most important race for Thoroughbreds, the day the Melbourne Cup takes place is declared a public holiday.

The Coveted Prize At Melbourne Cup

The total prize money for the Melbourne Cup is a whopping AUD$8,000,000 plus the trophy that’s valued at AUD$250,000. The winner of the race gets AUD$4.4 million, second place AUD$1.1 million, third AUD$550,000, fourth AUD$350,000, fifth AUD$230,000 and the sixth to twelfth place getting AUD$160,000 each. The trophy is made from 1.65 kg of 18-carat gold, making the Melbourne Cup one of the world’s most prestigious and expensive horse-racing competitions.

For many Aussies, the Melbourne Cup is a tradition and an important one that many go out to bet on their Melbourne Cup favourites. Many enthusiasts look forward to participating in the game by putting their bets on excellent Thoroughbreds. To give you an idea on this year’s Melbourne Cup favourites, you may check out online forums

Choosing a winning horse in this highly watched racing competition can be daunting, but a little help from the experts can give you a better grasp of it. Check out this YouTube channel dedicated to horse racing in Australia:

And for more tips on how to choose your winning horse, read on:

 1. Consider The Horses’ Age And Gender

Thoroughbreds allowed to join are three-years-old and over. In Melbourne Cup history, four and five-year-old’s have the most wins. Six-years old’s get the next spot, while three-year-old’s typically get too exhausted and slow down due to the distance. You can also place your bet on older horses because an eight-year-old has won in the past, in the 1941 cup, to be exact.

Male horses typically dominate the race; in recent years, no mares or female horses have joined the competition. If you’re going to bet, you have higher stakes of winning with a 4-year-old gelding. But if you want to bet without thinking much of the odds, it’s best to get a Melbourne Cup sweep template.

2. Know The Jockey And Trainer

Who rides the horse and trains them must be an excellent one. A horse’s relationship with whoever handles them is crucial in the race. The jockey’s form must be consistent; they must always be light, around 100-120 lbs and physically fit. International jockeys have proven their worth in their own countries but fell short in the Melbourne Cup.

Rookie jockey of 2021, James Mc Donald, who rode Veery Elleegant when he made a perfect race that time is one of the names to watch out for, this year, he’s riding Nature Strip. You can bet money on other local names like Kerrin McEvoy, Damien Oliver and Hugh Bowman. It’s also crucial to check the jockey’s winning streak in the month leading to Melbourne Cup; this will give you a fair idea of their performance and if they’re in their best form.

The trainer with the most wins in the Melbourne Cup is Bart Cummings, with an impressive 12 wins, which shows his passion and dedication to training champion Thoroughbreds. Before he passed in 2015, he was able to train his grandson, James Cummings, who will hopefully continue the tradition of producing excellent champions.

3. Determine The Horses’ Barrier

For many long-time bettors, barriers are just one of the odds but not a very important one. Many look at this for luck, but if you want to know, barriers 11 and 14 have produced the most champions in the Melbourne Cup.

4. Check The Horses’ Past Races

The stamina and performance of a horse are crucial, and often, a horse has run a race at least three days before the Melbourne Cup, which could mean that the horse might not be well rested or could also be well conditioned.

The past races before the Melbourne Cup are the Turnbull, Geelong, Caulfield, Cox Plate and the Lexus Hotham Handicap. Look for horses that have performed strongly in these mentioned competitions. These past races can give you an idea of the horses’ form and build, and you can study their race, especially the tail-end if they appear to be slowing down.


Choosing a winning horse by carefully studying various factors is crucial if you want to win large sums of money in this most-awaited competition. But the thrill of joining this special event is more exciting and enjoyable than the money you stand to earn.