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Melbourne Cup Trivia

The first Melbourne Cup was actually run on a Thursday in 1861 and during World War II it was run on Saturdays. The trophy was not the cup we know today, but a hand-beaten gold watch. A Cup was not awarded until 1916.

Horse

  • Most wins
    Makybe Diva (2003, 2004, 2005)
  • Consecutive Cup wins
    Makybe Diva (2003, 2004, 2005), Archer (1861, 1862), Rain Lover (1968, 1969), Think Big (1974, 1975)
  • Closest finish on record
    Dunaden (2011)
  • Biggest winning margin
    Eight lengths by Archer (1862) and Rain Lover (1968)
  • Fastest winning time
    3.16.30 by Kingston Rule (1990)
  • Oldest horse to win
    Eight-year-olds Catalogue (1938), Toryboy (1865)

Jockey

  • Most wins
    Bobby Lewis, 4 wins . . . The Victory (1902), Patrobas (1915), Artilleryman (1919), Trivalve (1927)
    Harry White, 4 wins . . . Think Big (1974, 1975), Arwon (1978) Hyperno (1979)
  • Youngest to win
    Peter St. Albans won at age 13 (1876)
  • First female jockey to ride in the Melbourne Cup
    Maree Lyndon on Argonaut Style (1987)

Trainer

  • 12 wins
    Bart Cummings with the most wins . . . Light Fingers (1965), Galilee (1966), Red Handed (1967), Think Big (1974, 1975), Gold And Black (1977), Hyperno (1979), Kingston Rule (1990), Let’s Elope (1991), Saintly (1996), Rogan Josh (1999) and Viewed (2008)
  • 5 wins
    Lee Freedman . . . Tawrrific (1989), Subzero (1992), Doriemus (1995), Makybe Diva (2004, 2005)
    Etienne de Mestre . . . Archer (1861 & 62), Tim Whiffler (1867), Chester (1877), Calamia (1878)
  • 4 wins
    John Tait . . . The Barb (1866), Glencoe (1868), The Pearl (1871), The Quack (1872);
    Richard Bradfield . . . Patron (1894), The Victory (1902), Night Watch (1918), Backwood (1924)
    James Scobie . . . Clean Sweep (1900), King Ingoda (1922), Bitalli (1923), Trivalve (1927)
    W S Hinkenbothem . . . Mentor (1888), Carbine (1890), Newhaven (1896), Blue Spec (1905)
  • First woman to train a winner – true winner
    Mrs A McDonald with Catalogue (1938) was the first woman trainer to win. However, her husband is listed as the registered trainer because woman were prevented from being registered at that time.
  • First woman to train a winner - officially recognized
    Sheila Laxon with Ethereal (2001)

Owner

  • First woman owner to win
    Mrs E.A. Widdis with Patrobas (1915)

Money

  • Prize money
    First million dollar prize money ever awarded to winner and placers (1985)
  • Shortest odds winner
    Archer 2-1 (1862), Tim Whiffler 5-2 (1867), Revenue 7-4 (1901), Phar Lap 8-11 (1930),
    Even Stevens 3-1 (1962), Let’s Elope 3-1 (1991) and Makybe Diva at 5-2 (2004)
  • Longest odds winners
    100 to 1 on The Pearl (1871), Wotan (1936), Old Rowley (1940)
  • Barriers – most winners (thru 2015)
    7 each winners for barriers 5 and 11, and 5 winners each for barriers 6 and 19
  • Barriers – least winners  (thru 2015)
    barrier 18 (0 wins), barrier 7 (1 win)

Melbourne Cup Trophy

  • Value
    The handmade 18-carat gold trophy is worth $150,000
  • Other Trophy
    The winning trainer and jockey are each awarded a miniature of the Cup valued at $10,000.
    The strapper receives the Tommy Woodcock Trophy (named for Phar Lap's attendant) worth $5,000.
  • Duplicate
    A second identical Melbourne Cup is made each year in case the race ends in a dead-heat.

Media

  • First radio broadcast of the Melbourne Cup
    ABC Radio in 1925
  • First photo finish camea used in Melbourne Cup
    1948, but was mis-aligned and declared the wrong winner

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