Known locally as ‘the race that stops a nation’, the Melbourne Cup is the by far most coveted prize in all of Australian thoroughbred horse racing. It is a huge horse racing betting event and garners a major amount of attention at the top online bookmakers who cover horse racing. The thrilling event takes place on the first Tuesday of every November, a day designated as a national holiday when hordes of punters hit bookies all over Australia for some Melbourne Cup betting action.
More than 100,000 eager bettors flock to Flemington Racecourse on the day of the Melbourne Cup. Offices across Australia stop work close to race time to celebrate the event. Local races are held throughout the country and when the main race begins it is televised on screens at each track. The Melbourne Cup race tends to reach around 650 million people through its live television broadcast.
Melbourne Cup betting is widespread leading up to and on the day of the event. In fact, it is the most popular horse racing betting event at Australian bookies by far. Popular choices for betting on the main race include each-way, accumulator and reverse forecast bets. Trying to pick a horse for the Melbourne Cup can be difficult due to the amount of overseas talent that competes. Over $650 million is wagered over the course of the four-day Melbourne Cup carnival, with around $350 million of that spent betting on Cup day.
Taking place at the Flemington Racecourse, the Melbourne Cup is the richest two-mile handicap in the world. The race was shortened to 3,200 metres from 3,219 metres in 1972 when Australia adopted the metric system. The race is for thoroughbred horses aged three years old and up. The minimum handicap weight is 50 kg. There is no maximum weight, but the top allocated weight cannot be less than 57 kg.
The Melbourne Cup has similar betting options to other major races, such as the Gold Cup at the Cheltenham Festival or the Grand National. The following three types of bets are the most common wagers placed each year during the Melbourne Cup festival but in no-way exhaust the amount of markets offered on the event:
The odds in the Melbourne Cup are presented to Australian punters in a different way. Each of the 24 horses running in the Melbourne Cup will be presented as a dollar amount. This means that if a horse is valued at A$5 every dollar you bet on that horse will return A$5 if it wins. To convert this into fractional odds, punters can split the A$5 payout into a profit of A$4 with a A$1 outlay. This would give odds of 4/1. The best online bookies like to provide Melbourne Cup odds in this fashion as an alternative to fractional or decimal odds as it may be easier for a first time gambler to understand on the day of the Cup. Most online bookmakers will however provide all bets in fractional or decimal odds for more traditional punters too.
Prize money for the Melbourne Cup has been above A$6 million since 2010, with trophies valued at a staggering $175,000 dollars. The first ten horses that make it past the post are awarded prize money, with the winner being paid around $3.5 million and second place getting $900,000. Third place normally receives in the region of $450,000, fourth $250,000 and fifth $175,000. Sixth to tenth place earn in the region of $125,000 each. 85% of the prize money is distributed to the owner with the trainer receiving 10% and the jockey getting 5%. There is a $500,000 bonus for the owner of the winning horse if it has also won the Irish St. Leger run the September prior to the Melbourne Cup.
|2015||Prince of Penzance||100/1||Michelle Payne|
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