The Caulfield Cup, one of the most famous Handicap races in Australia. Raced at Caulfield Racecourse, located about 10 km's from the city of Melbourne and offering prize money of $2.5 million also makes it one of the richest. The event is one of the major lead up races to the Melbourne Cup and one of the most respected races in horse racing in Australia.
The Caulfield Cup is contested over 2400m and was first run in 1879. The winner is likely to be installed as one of the favourites for the Melbourne Cup. They are also exempt from ballot for the Melbourne Cup. The last Cup winner to go on to win the Melbourne Cup was Ethereal in 2001. Ethereal was trained by Sheila Laxon, one of only two female trainers to win the race.
An imported Northern Hemisphere galloper All The Good was victorious in 2008. He was brought to Australia to contest the Melbourne Cup, and is the second imported horse to win the race in modern times following the success of Taufan's Melody in 1998. Racehorses like Lucknow, King Offa and Violoncello were imported winners during the early 20th century when it was a time Australian racing had an influx of these horses, usually for potential in breeding.
The last dual winner of the Caulfield Cup was Ming Dynasty who won the race in 1980 after having won for the first time in 1977. Rising Fast in 1954 and 1955 was the last back to back winner of the event. One of the shortest priced runners Rising Fast to win the race started at 7/4. The shortest priced winner was the legendary race horse, Tulloch who started at 6/4 on in his 1957 victory. Tobin Bronze started at 11/8 on but was beaten into 6th place in 1966. He gained some revenge when he came back to win the race the following year. Maldivian went to the start as the $2.40 favourite in 2007, the lowest odds for a favourite since Tobin Bronze. He was scratched at the barrier following a bizarre accident involving a small camera installed on the gate for television purposes.
Australia's top racehorses have been victorious in the Cup. The Honour Roll reads like a who's who of the Australasian turf. Northerly, the West Australian Champion trained by Fred Kersley won over $9 million in prize money and was successful in 2002. Might And Power, owned by Nick Moraitis and winner of over $5 million in stakes is another champion whose name graces the Caulfield Cup trophy.
Hall Of Fame Trainer, Bart Cummings holds the record for most winners of the Caulfield Cup with six wins. Cummings trained his first winner of the race with Galilee in 1966. Bart's last Cup winner was Let's Elope in 1991. Both horses went on to win the Melbourne Cup later in the Spring following their Caulfield success. Damian Oliver is the most successful recent jockey riding four winners, but has not ridden the winner since riding Sky Heights in 1999. Legendary Jockey Scobie Breasley rode five winners of the Caulfield Cup.
The Caulfield Cup is run a week after the prestigious Group 1 Caulfield Guineas for the 3yo's. It is the highlight of the day's racing, being the only Group 1 programmed on the card. The Cup will continue to remain one of Australia's greatest horse races.