Melbourne Cup

Known as ‘the race that stops a nation’, the Melbourne Cup is the second richest prize in Australian racing following the $15 million The Everest held in Sydney. 

Contested over the traditional two-mile Cup distance of 3200m, the Melbourne Cup is run and won on the first Tuesday of November annually at Flemington Racecourse.

The world’s richest handicap race, first run in 1861 with Archer taking out the opening two editions of the event, now offers over $7.4 million in prize money and is the jewel race of the Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival.

The Melbourne Cup runs as Flemington Race 7 at 3:00pm (local time) and has been won by many greats of the turf, including a host of international raiders the first of the Northern-hemisphere champions being Vintage Crop (1993).

There has only been one triple Melbourne Cup winner with the mighty mare Makybe Diva securing her hat-trick from 2003-05.

Verry Elleegant made history winning the 2021 Melbourne Cup as a 57kg weighted mare dominating by four lengths as the first winner from barrier 18.

Find out more about the iconic Melbourne Cup winners throughout history here.

Melbourne Cup 2021 – Quick Information

  • Race Day: Tuesday, November 2nd, 2021
  • Race Starts: 3 PM (AEST)
  • Track Location: Flemington Racecourse
  • Track Surface: Turf
  • Track Direction: Left-handed
  • Race Distance: 3,200 metres
  • Weight Conditions: Handicap
  • Qualification: Three year olds and over
  • Type: Thoroughbred
  • Grade: Group 1
  • Operator: Victoria Racing Club
  • Prize Purse: $7,430,000
  • Inaugural Race: 1861
  • 2021 Melbourne Cup Winner: Verry Elleegant

Melbourne cup 2021 RESULTS

The official 2021 Melbourne Cup results will be available below once the race takes place on Tuesday November 2, 2021 at 3:00pm (local Melbourne time). 

  1. #4 Verry Elleegant
  2. #2 Incentivise
  3. #3 Spanish Mission
  4. #22 Floating Artist

The Chris Waller-trained Zed mare Verry Elleegant ($18) scored an upset win in the Melbourne Cup 2021 results, the reigning Australian Racehorse of the Year improving on a lead-up third in the Cox Plate to make history as the first Melbourne Cup winner from barrier 18. Carrying a hefty 57kg, she was given a peach of a ride by James McDonald to defeat the short-priced favourite Incentivise by four lengths as the past two Caulfield Cup winners ran the quinella. The Andrew Balding-trained UK raider Spanish Mission was brave in third, while 50kg light-weight Floating Artist from the Maher/Eustace stable rounded out the Melbourne Cup First Four.

Melbourne Cup Betting 2021

New Ways to Bet at neds

There are many different ways to bet on the Melbourne Cup, we’ve included some of the most popular options below:

Bet Type How To Place This Type Of Bet In This Year’s Melbourne Cup
Win Bet Place your bet on the horse you think will take first place in this year’s Melbourne Cup.
Place Bet Place your bet on the horse you think will place in the top three finishers at this year’s Melbourne Cup. Pays less than a win bet, but offers safer odds.
Each-Way Bet If your runner finishes 1st in the Melbourne Cup, you will collect both the Win and the Place dividend. If your horse finishes 2nd or 3rd you will collect the Place dividend.
Quinella Bet You must select the runners that finish 1st and 2nd in any order, within the Melbourne Cup, in order to win the Quinella.
Exacta Bet You must select the runners that finish 1st and 2nd in the correct order, within the Melbourne Cup to win the Exacta.
Trifecta Bet You must select runners to finish 1st, 2nd and 3rd in the correct order, within the Melbourne Cup to win the Trifecta.
First Four You must select runners that finish 1st, 2nd ,3rd and 4th in the correct order, within the Melbourne Cup to win the First 4.
Quadrella Bet (Quaddie) You must select the winners of four nominated races to win the Quaddie. This means you would have to select three other races apart from the Melbourne Cup, in order to be eligible to place a Quaddie.

How To Bet On The Melbourne Cup in 2021

  1. Log in at neds.com.au
  2. Make a deposit, using your credit card, PayPal or other safe electronic method
  3. Make sure to check out form guide, once it’s released
  4. Decide what kind of bet you’re going to place (Win, Place, Each-Way, Trifecta + more betting options, please read our section on Melbourne Cup Betting above).
  5. Select the horse(s) for the race.

Melbourne Cup 2022 Odds

Early market betting odds on the 2022 Melbourne Cup will be displayed below once available. Odds are subject to fluctuation. For current odds on all of our live markets, please visit neds.com.au.

Melbourne Cup field 2021

The official Melbourne Cup 2021 field of final acceptances is announced by the VRC on the Saturday prior to the race following the action of Victoria Derby Day, Saturday October 30, 2021 live from Flemington Racecourse and will be published in full below. 

The Melbourne Cup has a field limit of 24 starters and there are no emergency runners.

The 2021 Melbourne Cup final field and barrier draw has been confirmed with the short-priced favourite Incentivise drawn barrier 16 with Brett Prebble aboard Peter Moody’s last start 3.5 length Caulfield Cup champion.

The reigning Melbourne Cup winner Twilight Payment carries this year’s top weight of 58kg from gate two with Jye McNeil back aboard the Irish raider.

Spanish Mission after passing a third vet check on Saturday afternoon is the only other international Melbourne Cup horse this year with Craig Williams to ride.

  • 2021 Melbourne Cup Scratchings Update: #20 Future Score (15) has been withdrawn failing a final vet check (lameness, right foreleg) by RV minutes before the official scratchings deadline.

Which Horse Will Win The Melbourne Cup in 2021

The best way to pick who will win the Melbourne Cup is to take into account the form, assess the barriers, consider the weight the horse will carry, among other factors.

Additional factors to take into considerations are as follows:

  • Favourites – The favourites in Melbourne Cup betting have a poor record overall in the event.
  • Barrier Hoodoo – Verry Elleegant (2021) became history’s first Melbourne Cup winner from barrier 18, while barrier 11 is considered the luckiest Melbourne Cup gate.
  • Internationals Rule – Since the race opened up to contenders outside of Australia and New Zealand, the internationals from the Northern Hemisphere have dominated the Melbourne Cup results including in 2020 when three ran the trifecta: Twilight Payment (1st), Tiger Moth (2nd) and Prince Of Arran (3rd).
  • Six Is It – Six-year-olds have the best recent record in the Melbourne Cup with Zed mare Verry Elleegant (2021) the last six-year-old Melbourne Cup winner.

Melbourne Cup Last Place

If you want to place bet on which horse will place last in this year’s Melbourne Cup results, then the table below will be of interest to you, displaying who took last place in the past ten years. Often Melbourne Cup sweeps pay out for the last placegetter, so keeping on the unlucky horse at the tail end of the field is popular. 

Melbourne Cup Race Year Last Finishing Horse Trainer Jockey
2021 Ocean Billy Chris Waller Damien Thornton
2020* Avilius James Cummings John Allen
2019 Rostropovich David Hayes Dwayne Dunn
2018* Red Cardinal Darren Weir Damien Oliver
2017 Gallante Robert Hickmott Michael Dee
2016 Rose Of Virginia Lee & Shannon Hope Ben E Thompson
2015 Snow Sky Ed Dunlop Gérald Mossé
2014 Admire Rakti Tomoyuki Umeda Zac Purton
2013 Verema Alain de Royer-Dupré Christophe Lemaire
2012 Ethiopia Pat Carey Rhys McLeod
2011 Modun Saeed Bin Suroor Kieran McEvoy
2010 Zavite Anthony Cummings Michael Walker
2009 Warringah Chris Waller Damien Oliver
2008 Honolulu Aidan O’Brien Colm O’Donoghue

*Note:

  • 2020 Anthony Van Dyck was pulled-up 350m out from the line and subsequently euthanised due to fracturing his fetlock.
  • 2018 The Cliffsofmoher failed to finish after fracturing a shoulder and sadly having to be subsequently euthanised post-race.

Melbourne Cup Favourites 2021

Early favourites in Melbourne Cup 2021 betting include Peter Moody’s impressive Caulfield Cup champion Incentivise, last year’s winner Twilight Payment defending his title and fellow international Spanish Mission.  

Fiorente ($7 in 2013) was the last Melbourne Cup favourite to win.

The 2021 Melbourne Cup favourite Incentivise ($2.90) finished second to Verry Elleegant ($18).

Melbourne Cup 2021 Form Guide

The final form guide will be available the week prior to the race following the final acceptances for the Melbourne Cup on Derby Day. You can check below for a link to our full 2021 Melbourne Cup Form Guide following final acceptances.

CLICK HERE FOR OUR FULL 2021 MELBOURNE CUP FORM GUIDE

Melbourne Cup 2021 Tips

The Favourite: #2 Incentivise ($2.90 at time of publish)

Peter Moody saddles-up the deserving Melbourne Cup favourite and only a mud track (unlikely) or bad luck (touch wood) will see this former Queenslander salute for the punters and continue his meteoric rise through the ranks. From an eighth in a Toowoomba maiden in March (this March!) to a 3.5 length Caulfield Cup winner from the outside barrier, this has a fairy-tale written all over it. It’s a shame the 161st running of the ‘race that stops a nation’ is far from a vintage edition as it takes some of the shine off whichever horse wins. Still, come Tuesday afternoon we could see a similarly large gap between this spruik stayer who has champion status pending and the rest of the field.

The Danger: #1 Twilight Payment ($13 at time of publish)

Without the usual saturation of internationals the overseas’ form is out to be franked by just two runners including this horse who won the race last year. This is actually his third start in a Melbourne Cup and, while historically and statistically a few things are against the Irish raider, he’s had a flawless lead-up since arriving in Australia unlike Spanish Mission. Takes some horse to lead all-the-way and win this race and he did that in style last year. Going just as well, deserves to carry the 58kg top-weight and can be right in the finish again. Not a spent force by any means despite racing in Australia as a nine-year-old!

Each Way: #21 Tralee Rose ($15 at time of publish)

There looks a bit of value on Tralee Rose in the Melbourne Cup after the nicely-bred daughter of Tavistock (whose progeny are dominating the staying races down under) put in a bold effort to win the Group 3 Geelong Cup. She has raced at 3200m when fourth in the autumn’s Group 2 Adelaide Cup and is on the right trajectory toward her Grand Final on Tuesday. Good weight (51kg), good gate (12) and ticking a few boxes as an exotic or each way selection.

The Best Roughie: #12 Persan ($26 at time of publish)

One of the forgotten horses in the mix, Persan was a brave fifth last year and returns looking to join a few elite horses to come back off an unplaced previous start in the race and win (including Twilight Payment last year). Looks to be in similarly nice form, is the right age and the lead-up Caulfield Cup third was eye-catching.

Our insider Melbourne Cup 2021 betting tips will be provided right here the week of the race and a full Melbourne Cup tipping preview available on the Neds Blog.

CLICK HERE FOR OUR COMPLETE 2021 MELBOURNE CUP PREVIEW & TIPS

Melbourne Cup Race Day 2021

Race day takes place on Tuesday, the 2nd of November, 2021. Melbourne Cup Day 2021 is the second of the four-day Melbourne Cup Carnival. It follows on from Victoria Derby Day and runs on the first Tuesday of November annually. After Cup Day the Carnival continues with VRC Oaks Day on the Thursday and comes to a close with Mackinnon Stakes Day on the Saturday. 

The key support races on the 2021 Melbourne Cup Day Race Card are the:

Melbourne Cup Race Time 2021

The race is scheduled to start at 3 PM Australian Eastern Daylight time. Melbourne Cup start times for various states appear in the table below.

State Start Time
Western Australia 12:00 PM
Queensland 2:00 PM
Australian Capital Territory 3:00 PM
Tasmania 3:00 PM
Victoria 3:00 PM
New South Wales 3:00 PM
Northern Territory 1.30 pm
South Australia 2.30 pm

Melbourne Cup 2021 Barrier Draw

The official 2021 Melbourne Cup barrier draw will be released to the public on Saturday, October 30, 2021 at 7.30 pm following the VRC Derby Day racing action at Flemington Racecourse and published in full in our above Melbourne Cup Field section. 

Melbourne Cup 2021 Nominations

The 2021 Melbourne Cup nominations close on Tuesday August 3, 2021. You can view the full list of nominations on our Melbourne Cup Nominations page.

The Melbourne Cup nominations are now out featuring 174 stayers, the same number as 2020, including the defending champion Twilight Payment and all-in favourite Incentivise now prepared by Peter Moody.

Melbourne Cup 2021 first acceptances

The 2021 Melbourne Cup first acceptances close on Tuesday September 7, 2021 at 12:00 PM (AEST). You can view the full list of first declarations on our Melbourne Cup Nominations page. 
The Melbourne Cup 2021 first acceptances attracted 124 stayers led by the Peter Moody-trained all-in favourite Incentivise and UK raider Spanish Mission.

Melbourne Cup 2021 second acceptances

The 2021 Melbourne Cup second acceptances close on Tuesday September 28, 2021 at 12:00 PM (AEST). You can view the full list of second declarations on our Melbourne Cup Nominations page.

Melbourne Cup 2021 third acceptances

The 2021 Melbourne Cup third acceptances closed on Tuesday October 12, 2021 at 12:00 PM (AEST). You can view the full list of third declarations on our Melbourne Cup Nominations page.

The Melbourne Cup 2021 third acceptances attracted 60 stayers including the all-in favourite Incentivise for Peter Moody, the defending champion Twilight Payment and The Bart Cummings winner Grand Promenade.

Melbourne Cup 2021 fourth acceptances

The 2021 Melbourne Cup fourth acceptances closed on Monday, October 25, 2021. You can view the full list of fourth declarations on our Melbourne Cup Nominations page.

The Melbourne Cup 2021 fourth acceptances attracted 35 stayers including the all-in favourite Incentivise for Peter Moody, the defending champion Twilight Payment and the Chris Waller-trained mare Verry Elleegant.

Melbourne Cup Weights 2021

Handicap conditions apply to this race. The early 2021 Melbourne Cup weights on the nominated horses are announced in September and will be detailed here. 

2021 Melbourne Cup Top-Weight:

  • #1 Twilight Payment (58kg)

Melbourne Cup 2021 Acceptance Dates

  • 2021 Melbourne Cup Nominations: Closed on Tuesday August 3, 2021 – drew 174 entries
  • 2021 Melbourne Cup First Declarations: Close on Tuesday September 7, 2021 – attracted 124 stayers
  • 2021 Melbourne Cup Second Declarations: Closed on Tuesday September 28, 2021
  • 2021 Melbourne Cup Third Declarations: Closed on Tuesday October 12, 2021 – left 60 hopefuls
  • 2021 Melbourne Cup Final Field: Announced Saturday October 30, 2021 at 4:30pm (local time)
  • 2021 Melbourne Cup Barrier Draw: Takes place Saturday October 30, 2021 at 7:00pm (local time)

melbourne cup JOCKEYS 2021

The official 2021 Melbourne Cup jockeys must be declared before Friday the 29th of October, 2021 and will be updated in our above Melbourne Cup Field section.

Melbourne Cup 2021 Scratchings

Scratchings close at 7:30 AM on Tuesday, the 2nd of November, 2021. 

2021 Melbourne Cup Scratchings: 

  • #20 Future Score (15)

Melbourne Cup Prize Money 2021

The Melbourne Cup prize purse is worth $7,430,000 in total, distributed from places first through to twelfth including $4.4 million going to the Melbourne Cup winner in 2021. 

Place Prize Money
1st $4,400,000
2nd $1,100,000
3rd $550,000
4th $350,000
5th $230,000
6th $160,000
7th $160,000
8th $160,000
9th $160,000
10th $160,000
11th $160,000
12th $160,000

 

Melbourne Cup Race Number 2021

The 2021 Melbourne Cup runs as Flemington Race 7 on the 2nd of November, 2021 part of the Lexus Melbourne Cup Day, the second race day event of the Melbourne Cup Carnival. There are ten races in total that day at Flemington Racecourse.

Melbourne Cup Live 2021

You can watch or listen to the 2021 Melbourne Cup live, across the following mediums.

Telecast: Channel 10

Pay television: Sky Racing 1 (channel 526 on Foxtel)

Radio: Radio Sport National

Melbourne Cup Sweep

All around the country, workplaces participate in putting together a Melbourne Cup sweep, allotting a horse (usually at random) to each person that decides to join the sweep. Please note that sweeps are a casual gambling environment organised among peers. You can learn more about sweeps here.

Melbourne Cup Tickets 2021

Tickets for the Melbourne Cup Carnival are available through Ticketek. Note: Melbourne Cup tickets in 2021 may not on sale to the public due to COVID-19. 

Melbourne Cup Carnival 2021

The 2021 Melbourne Cup Carnival is from October 30th until the 6th of November, 2021. 

The first race day is the Penfolds Victoria Derby Day on Saturday the 30th of October, followed by the Lexus Melbourne Cup Day on Tuesday the 2nd of November. The next race meet is Kennedy Oaks Day on the Thursday the 4th of November, followed by the final race meet for the carnival, Mackinnon Stakes Day held on Saturday the the 6th of November, 2021. 

Australian Horses In The Melbourne Cup

Australian horses dominate the Melbourne Cup 2021 field with COVID-19 restrictions and the early withdrawal of a number of internationals. 

22 of the 23 horses in the 2021 Melbourne Cup field were officially Australian-trained. 

Vow And Declare in 2019 beat out a host of international fancies to become the last Australian horse to win the Melbourne Cup.

New Zealand-bred Verry Elleegant (1st) prepared in Sydney by Chris Waller defeated the Queensland-bred Incentivise (2nd) who is trained in Victoria by Peter Moody defeated the UK raider Spanish Mission (3rd) in the 2021 Melbourne Cup results.

International Horses In The Melbourne Cup

International horses dominate the Melbourne Cup field each year. From 2010 – 2021 six internationally-trained raiders prepared from outside of Australian / New Zealand saluted in the Melbourne Cup most recently Cross Counter (2018) for Godolphin followed in 2020 by Twilight Payment (Joseph O’Brien) who beat fellow internationals Tiger Moth (2nd) and Prince Of Arran (3rd). 

There were just two internationally-trained horses in the 2021 Melbourne Cup field from outside of Australia and New Zealand: Twilight Payment (Joseph O’Brien) and Spanish Mission (Andrew Balding). They finished 11th and 3rd respectively.

Grey Horse In The Melbourne Cup

Grey horses which have seen success in the Melbourne Cup include Subzero (first place in 1992), Gunsynd (third place in 1972) Manighar (fifth place in 2010). A total of six grey horses have won the Melbourne Cup throughout history. 

Melbourne Cup Winners

Winners of the Melbourne Cup going back to 1999 displayed in the table below. If you would like to view the full list of Melbourne Cup winners, going all the way back to 1861, please visit our Melbourne Cup Winners page.

Year Winner Trainer Jockey Time
2021 Verry Elleegant Chris Waller James McDonald 3:17.43
2020 Twilight Payment Joseph O’Brien Jye McNeil 3:17.34
2019 Vow And Declare Danny O’Brien Craig Williams 3:24.76
2018 Cross Counter Charlie Appleby Kerrin McEvoy 3:21.17
2017 Rekindling Joseph O’Brien Corey Brown 3:21.19
2016 Almandin Robert Hickmott Kerrin McEvoy 3:20.58
2015 Prince Of Penzance Darren Weir Michelle Payne 3:23.15
2014 Protectionist Andreas Wohler Ryan Moore 3:17.71
2013 Fiorente Gai Waterhouse Damien Oliver 3:20.30
2012 Green Moon Robert Hickmott Brett Prebble 3:20.45
2011 Dunaden Mikel Delzangles Christophe Lemaire 3:20.84
2010 Americain Alain de Royer Dupre Gerald Mosse 3:26.87
2009 Shocking Mark Kavanagh Corey Brown 3:23.87
2008 Viewed Bart Cummings Blake Shinn 3:20.40
2007 Efficient Graeme Rogerson Michael Rodd 3:23.34
2006 Delta Blues Katsuhiko Sumii Yasunari Iwata 3:21.42
2005 Makybe Diva Lee Freedman Glen Boss 3:19.79
2004 Makybe Diva Lee Freedman Glen Boss 3:28.55
2003 Makybe Diva David Hall Glen Boss 3:19.90
2002 Media Puzzle Dermot K Weld Damien Oliver 3:16.97
2001 Ethereal Sheila Laxon Scott Seamer 3:21.08
2000 Brew Michael Moroney Kerrin McEvoy 3:18.68
1999 Rogan Josh Bart Cummings John Marshall 3:19.64