As everyone gets ready for the biggest racing event in Australia, the team at Greg Grant Saddlery has had a look into the history of the race that stops a nation. We’ve rounded out the top ten facts to carry you to victory on trivia night.

  1. The first Melbourne Cup was run in 1861, and was won by Archer who took home 710 gold sovereigns and a hand beaten gold watch. Archer went on to win the Melbourne Town Plate the very next day.
  2. In 2015 Michelle Payne was the first female jockey to win the Melbourne Cup. She rode Prince of Penzance.
  3. Makybe Diva is the only horse to win the Melbourne Cup three years in a row and holds the most wins by a horse taking home the cup in 2003, 2004 and 2005. Only four horses have ever won the cup twice. They were Archer (1861 & 1862), Peter Pan (1932 & 1934), Rain Lover (1968 & 1969) and Think Big (1974 & 1975).
  4. Trainer Bart Cummings holds the record for the most Melbourne Cup wins by a trainer with his horses coming home first 12 times.
  5. The 1890 Melbourne Cup had 39 runners! The most in the history of the Melbourne Cup.
  6. The youngest jockey to ever win the cup was Peter St Albans who was eight days short of his 12th birthday when he rode Australian mare Briseis to victory. The official age required was 13 years of age, which is the official age recorded for Peter St Albans in the race.
  7. The record for the slowest ever time to win the Melbourne Cup is also held by Archer who came home with a time of 3 minutes 52 seconds.
  8. American bred racehorse Kingston Rule Holds the record for the fastest run to victory, with a time of 3 minutes 16.3 seconds in the 1990 Melbourne Cup.
  9. Melbourne Cup day was declared a public holiday in 1877.
  10. The largest ever crowd to attend the Melbourne Cup was in 2003 where 122,737 people attended.
March 10, 2022 — Greg Grant Saddlery