I had the pleasure last week of attending a breakfast hosted by The Victorian Racing Club here in Sydney, to get the lowdown on this 154 year old Australian tradition Melbourne Cup that has captivated not only our nation but the world, and even more of an honour to meet the owner of 1998 winner Rogan Josh the amazing Wendy Green…
Wendy’s story is one of hope, one of passion and self belief, and for me it made this national event less commercial in my eyes and more human. The fact that a school teacher from Darwin with not a lot of money to her name, had a dream to take a horse that she believed was a winner to Melbourne to race it is truly inspiring. It’s the spirit of the Australian dream, as Wendy said in her speech the “Melbourne Cup” is an amazing leveller , a school teacher from Darwin has won the cup yet the Queen or England’s horses have never won.
She shared about a dream her father had when she was still a young kid, and how she knew it was her destiny to fulfil the dream of winning with a horse that her family had bred and reared. Through all the negatives there were glimpses of hope, one being when she thought they might not make it to the top 24 horses who get to race and famous trainer Bart Cummings confidently told her they would. Sitting at the table listening to her share her amazing story, I began to see why this amazing race had lasted the test of time and why it captivated the world in one word HOPE!
Here are a few facts on The Melbourne Cup-
- Since the running of the first Melbourne Cup in 1861, now in its 154th year, the event has developed into a social, cultural and sporting icon for Australia with international significance
- The Emirates Melbourne Cup is the richest handicap race in the world, with prize money of A$6.2million
- Bringing Australia to a standstill, the ‘race that stops a nation’TM is held at Flemington annually at 3pm on the first Tuesday in November and is watched by millions of people across the globe
- Claiming Melbourne Cup victory is a highly sought after accolade by international racing champions
- To celebrate the 150th Melbourne Cup in 2010 the trophy returned to its zenith design conceived by master jeweller, James Steeth in 1919
- The “Loving Cup’s” three handles symbolise the relationship between the winning jockey, trainer and owner
- Crafted by Hardy Brothers Jewellers, the trophy’s 44 pieces are hand welded and take 250 hours to produce
- The timber base of the Emirates Melbourne Cup is hand turned from Australian Wattle and is the traditional base for every Melbourne Cup
With an amazing array of events beginning in early September , there is definitely something for everyone and for those Rogue Homme Gents that love to dress up this is the perfect time to get suit ready, and we’re putting together a few ideas to make it easier for you so stay tuned to Rogue Homme and we’ll see you in Melbourne for Melbourne Cup.
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