Melbourne Cup Qualification

The Melbourne Cup qualification system qualifies horses based on a handicap. The minimum weight for the field is 49 kilograms. Although there is no maximum weight for the race, the highest allocated weight for the field should not be less than 57 kilograms. Before the race, the required weight handicap of participating horses is declared by the VRC Handicapper.

Melbourne Cup Weights

The horse’s weight is the biggest qualifier in the Melbourne Cup. In the past, the cup adopted a system to give horses an equal chance to win the race by adding more weight to older horses compared to younger ones. But in recent years, the cup committee used a “quality handicap” formula where superior horses are given less severe weight penalties.

Melbourne Cup Nominations System

The selected entries for the Melbourne Cup are nominated in the first week of August. From an initial Melbourne Cup field of 300 to 400 horses, the committee will select the final 24 starters. However, after nominations, the owner of the runner must confirm their intention to run four more times leading to the race.

This system allows owners to gauge the competition as the selection process moves forward. This way, they are given four times to decide to whether they want to continue with the selection process by paying a fee, or to back out. Thus, the owners are essentially betting that their horse will be selected in the final field with every fee that they pay.

Melbourne Cup Balloting Out Rules

In the final selection, the last group of Melbourne Cup horses will be trimmed to 24 starters. To do that, each horse is evaluated and may be “balloted out” based on factors like prize money earned in the last two years, wins and placing, and allocated handicap.

Horses that won prestigious races around the world are exempted from the balloting process. These races include the Victoria Derby, Lexus Stakes, Cox Plate, LKS Mackinnon Stakes, Caulfield Cup, Irish St. Leger (IRE), and the Tenno Sho (Spring) (JPN).

With the increasing number of foreign-trained horses entering the selection process, the Australian government ruled that international horses, except horses from New Zealand, must undergo 14-day quarantine within the approved locations in their own country before coming to Australia. Each horse will undergo physical examinations as a requirement in the selection process.

Spring Racing

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Horse Racing Today

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No Melbourne Cup For Moonee Valley Gold Cup Winner Lunar Flare

Grahame Begg opted not to leave his mare Lunar Flare in the Melbourne Cup...

2021 Moonee Valley Vase Result...

2021 Moonee Valley Vase Results: Winner Forgot You New Victoria Derby Favourite

It was an exciting finish in the Moonee Valley Vase 2021 on Cox Plate Day with...

Crystal Mile 2021 Results: Jus...

Crystal Mile 2021 Results: Just Folk Scores Upset Win on Cox Plate Day

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2021 Coolmore Stud Stakes Opti...

2021 Coolmore Stud Stakes Option for Red Anchor Winner Generation

The Ciaron Maher & David Eustace-trained Generation showed a great will to...

Race Results

2021 Cox Plate Results: Irish Raider State Of Rest Holds Off Anamoe, Survives Protest

No Melbourne Cup For Moonee Valley Gold Cup Winner Lunar Flare

2021 Moonee Valley Vase Results: Winner Forgot You New Victoria Derby Favourite

Crystal Mile 2021 Results: Just Folk Scores Upset Win on Cox Plate Day

2021 Coolmore Stud Stakes Option for Red Anchor Winner Generation

Race Previews

Scratched Cox Plate Favourite Zaaki to Target 2021 Mackinnon Stakes

2021 The Invitation Day: Randwick Scratchings & Track Report

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Fields & Form

2021 The Invitation Day: Randwick Scratchings & Track Report

2021 Cox Plate Day: Moonee Valley Scratchings & Track Report; Zaaki Out

Zaaki Scratched from Ladbrokes Cox Plate 2021 Field: Anamoe New Favourite

2021 Cox Plate Tips: Exotic Betting Selections

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