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Melbourne Cup Fun Facts

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As everyone gets ready for the biggest racing event in Australia, we had a look into the history of the race that stops a nation. We’ve rounded out some awesome facts to make sure your next trivia night is victorious.

1. The first Melbourne Cup was run in 1861, and was won by a horse called Archer. The prize money consisted of 710 gold sovereigns and a hand beaten gold watch.

2. Michelle Payne was the first female jockey to win the Melbourne Cup which happened in 2015 . Her horse was the Prince of Penzance.

3. Makybe Diva is the only horse to win the Melbourne Cup three years in a row!  The cup was won in 2003, 2004 and 2005.

4. The 1890 Melbourne Cup had 39 horses in the race which is the most in the history of the race.

5. Melbourne Cup day was declared a public holiday in 1877.

6. Trainer Bart Cummings holds the record for the most Melbourne Cup wins and his horses have won  a record 12 times.

7. The record for the slowest ever time to win the Melbourne Cup is also held by Archer who previously won the race but came home at another time with a time of 3 minutes 52 seconds.

8. In 1972 the race was altered to the metric distance of 3200m, 18.7 metres or 61.5 feet short of two miles.

9. The youngest jockey to ever win the race 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.

10. The largest ever crowd to attend the Melbourne Cup was in 2003 where 122,737 people attended.