How the Melbourne Cup Betting Favourites Fare – What’s In A Price?

There are currently two horses installed at the top of the 2012 Melbourne Cup odds ahead of this afternoon’s $6.2 million showdown at 3:00pm (AEST) with Luca Cumani’s European galloper Mount Athos having closed the gap on the defending champ Americain, but what chances to the top elects stand historically speaking?

Earlier this morning it was 2010 Melbourne Cup champ Americain topping the Melbourne Cup betting markets at the bookies around Australia.


Americain has been knocked off top spot in the 2012 Melbourne Cup odds

Their game fourth in the Caulfield Cup first-up last time out caught the eye but they have continued to ease in their price to become just the second horse in history to win two, non-successive Melbourne Cups and they are now at $8.

While the defending Melbourne Cup winner Duanden faces a tough task as the 59kg topweight today they have had some big money bets come in for them to secure back-to-back Cups (in two ways as they won last year’s Melbourne Cup and this year’s Caulfield Cup) and they are now at $7.

They share Melbourne Cup betting favourtism with the big market mover Mount Athos who is into $7 to win their Australian debut in the Cup, the horse nicely weighed on 54kg having carried 61kg for their two most recent runs back in Europe.

But should you be backing the favourites in the ‘race that stops a nation’ this afternoon? Or is there better value in laying the top fancies in favour of a longer-priced hopeful in the Melbourne Cup odds?

Below we take a look at the trends and stats on the Melbourne Cup favourites, and the price of the Melbourne Cup winners over the years to have you backing the right horse in Flemington Race 7 this afternoon!

Melbourne Cup Favourites & Winning Prices

  • Melbourne Cup betting favourites have won 33 times since the race was inaugurated in 1861
  • The shortest-priced Melbourne Cup winner in history was Phar Lap (11/8 in 1930) which is around $2.35 in today’s terms
  • Last year’s Melbourne Cup favourite was Americain ($5) who ran an excellent fourth to Dunaden but was still beaten
  • Favourites actually have a very poor recent record in the Melbourne Cup with Makybe Diva ($3.60 in 2004 and $4.40 in 2005) the last
  • Makybe Diva also won the 2003 Melbourne Cup but didn’t jump favourite
  • Before her the punters’ picks went back-to-back in 1997 and 1998 with Might And Power and Jezabeel
  • That doesn’t mean however the Cup has been a real roughies’ race either as 7 of the past 11 winners started between $6 and $13 in the markets
  • This year there are four horses that fall into that price range with #1 Duanden ($7), #8 Mount Athos ($7), #2 Americain ($8) and #4 Red Cadeaux ($8.50)
  • The only Melbourne Cup winners at longer than $18 in the past three decades were Tawriffic ($31 in 1989) and Viewed ($41 in 208)
  • Melbourne Cup betting favourites have a 67% place rate in the ‘race that stops a nation’ with 34 winners and a total of 67 top three finishes making Duanden and Mount Athos great place bets today
  • Only three triple figure roughies have won the Melbourne Cup with  The Pearl (100-1 in 1871), Wotan (100-1 in 1936) and Old Rowley (100-1 in 1940); this year there three triple figure outsiders with #6 Voila Ici ($151), #21 Precedence ($101) and #22 Unusual Suspect ($151)

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In the meantime get behind you Melbourne Cup selections at the best prices online at where you will get better odds than the land-based bookies!