A LOOK AT THE RICH HISTORY OF THE MELBOURNE CUP
* First run in 1861 under the banner of the Victorian Turf Club and won by Archer who beat the favourite Mormon by six lengths. The prize was 1420 pounds and the trophy a gold watch.
* Archer came back the following year to beat Mormon, this time by eight lengths, a record margin that still stands and is shared with the 1968 winner Rain Lover.
* Trainer Bart Cummings claimed the first of his 12 Melbourne Cups in 1965 with Light Fingers. His other winners were 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).
* Other trainers to have multiple Cup wins include: 5 - Lee Freedman: Tawrrific (1989), Subzero (1992), Doriemus (1995), Makybe Diva (2004, 2005); 4 - 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).
* Young Irish trainer Joseph O'Brien will be trying for his third win with Twilight Payment.
* Kingston Rule holds the metric race record of 3:16.30.
* In 1985, a new era dawned for the Cup with prize money raised to $1 million. The owners of What A Nuisance received $650,000 and a $23,000 Cup.
* This year the race is worth $4.4 million to the winning owners.
* The oldest horses to win the race were the eight-year-olds Toryboy (1865), Catalogue (1938) and Twilight Payment (2020).
* The last three-year-old to win was Skipton (1941). Technically the 2018 winner Cross Counter and 2017 winner Rekindling were three but considered four in the southern hemisphere.
* Bobbie Lewis and Harry White are the most successful jockeys with four wins.
* In 33 rides in the Cup, Lewis saluted the judge with The Victory (1902), Patrobas (1915), Artilleryman (1919) and Trivalve in 1927. He was also runner-up four times and finished third on Phar Lap in 1929.
* Harry White steered the Bart Cummings-trained Think Big to successive victories in 1974 and 1975. He was back in the winners' circle again with Arwon in 1978 and another Cummings' runner Hyperno in 1979.
* Three jockeys will be chasing their fourth Melbourne Cup win this year - Kerrin McEvoy (Grand Promenade), Damien Oliver (Delphi) and Glen Boss (Sir Lucan).
* Makybe Diva is the only horse to win the Cup three times - in 2003, 2004 and 2005.
* The longest-priced horses to win: Four horses have won at 100-1: The Pearl (1871), Wotan (1936), Old Rowley (1940) and Prince Of Penzance (2015).
* The shortest priced are 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 in 2004.
* In 1993, Vintage Crop became the first northern hemisphere-trained horse to win. The Irish stayer was trained by Dermot Weld and ridden by Mick Kinane and is credited with putting the race on the world stage.
* In 2015, Michelle Payne became the first woman to ride the winner of the Melbourne Cup when she steered the Darren Weir-trained Prince Of Penzance to a famous victory.
* Rachel King will be striving to become the second female to ride the winner when she partners Pondus.
Australian Associated Press
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