Champions Sprint

The VRC Sprint Classic / Champions Sprint runs on VRC Champions Sprint Day, as part of the final day of the Melbourne Cup Carnival at Flemington Racecourse each November.

2022 Champions Sprint Results

  • 1st: TBD
  • 2nd: TBD
  • 3rd: TBD



The Champions Sprint, previously called the Darley Sprint Classic, VRC Sprint Classic and formerly the Patinack Farm Classic due to sponsorship, is a 1200m sprint race run down the famous Flemington straight during the spring.

Held on the first Saturday of November on the final day of the Melbourne Cup Carnival, the Champions Sprint is the premier sprint race of the Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival and is currently worth $3,000,000 in prize money as of 2022.

The race, held on VRC Champions Stakes Day – formerly known as Mackinnon Stakes Day – is now the perfect target race for horses out of the world’s richest turf race – the $15 million The Everest (1200m) in Sydney the month before.

Redzel (2017) completed The Everest – VRC Sprint Classic double when the former took place for the first time. Santa Ana Lane (6th in 2018), Nature Strip (4th in 2019) and Bivouac (2nd in 2020) all also won the VRC Classic off a lead-up in The Everest race.

For a firth time in as many years The Everest produced the VRC Sprint Classic winner in 2021 with Nature Strip completing the double.

Nature Strip further franked the form returning in the autumn of 2022 to again win the TJ Smith Stakes in Sydney before heading to Royal Ascot in the UK for his international Group 1 King’s Stand Stakes (1200m) victory.

The 2022 VRC Sprint Classic runs on Saturday November 5, 2022 as the Champions Sprint at Flemington offering $3 million in stakes for the first time.

VRC Sprint Classic / Champions Sprint
Date: Saturday November 5, 2022
Track: Flemington Racecourse
Distance: 1200m
Race Type: Weight-For-Age
Status: Group 1
Prize Money: $3,000,000

2022 Champions Sprint Results

  • 1st: TBD
  • 2nd: TBD
  • 3rd: TBD

2022 Champions Sprint Betting Odds

The latest VRC Sprint Classic 2022 betting odds – now known as the Champions Sprint odds -with links to the markets at Ladbrokes.com.au for you to back your best Champions Sprint tips.

Bivouac ($3.20 in 2020) and Nature Strip ($1.28 in 2021) are the last VRC Sprint Classic favourites to win.

CLICK HERE FOR THE LATEST ALL-IN 2022 CHAMPIONS SPRINT ODDS (Pre-Nominations)

2022 Champions Sprint Field & Barriers

The 2022 Champions Sprint field will be released by Racing Victoria on the Wednesday of Melbourne Cup week 2022 and will be published below along with the official Champions Sprint Barrier Draw as soon as announced.

Horses may come into the Champions Sprint field via a number of different early Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival sprint races, but the Group 1 Manikato Stakes (1200m) has proven the key lead-up race with Buffering (2013) the last horse to complete the double.

The richest turf race in the world – the $15 million The Everest (1200m) at Royal Randwick the month before, also now serves as a possible VRC Sprint Classic / Champions Sprint lead-up with Santa Ana Lane running sixth in the Sydney feature before his 2018 win at Flemington. In 2017 Redzel took out The Everest – Darley Classic double, while Nature Strip (2019) improved on a fourth in The Everest to again frank the form with a big Darley Classic win at Flemington and Bivouac (2020) also won the Darley Classic (now the Champions Sprint) off a second in The Everest.

In 2021 Nature Strip won the race for a second time and joined Redzel in completing The Everest – VRC Sprint Classic double.

2022 Champions Sprint Nominations

The Champions Sprint nominations are taken the Monday of race week and feature a star-studded list of spring sprinters, including many that ran well in the previous season’s Champions Sprint / VRC Sprint Classic Classic results. Races.com.au will publish the official 2022 Champions Sprint Nominations as soon as early entries are announced by Racing Victoria.

VRC Sprint Classic / Champions Sprint History

The VRC Sprint Classic’s inaugural winner was Gulnare in 1868. The race was upgraded to Group 1 status in 2007. The race distance has changed many times over the years, with the being a 1200m, 1400m and 1600m. The race name has also changed many times, with the race being known as the Flying Stakes, Linlithgow Stakes, Emirates Classic, Lexus Classic, The Age Classic, Patinack Farm Classic before changing to the VRC Sprint Classic in 2013. It has also been run as the Darley Classic in recent years.

Many great horses have won the VRC Sprint Classic including the legendary Phar Lap in 1930. Champion sire Fastnet Rock win the race in 2004.

A number of horses have won the race multiple times including the undefeated mare Black Caviar (2010-11) and Chris Waller’s ace sprinter Nature Strip (2019, 2021) who also won the 2021 The Everest in the lead-up that spring.

The event was renamed ahead of the 2022 edition as the Champions Sprint.

VRC Sprint Classic / Champions Sprint Results & Winners

The VRC Sprint Classic / Champions Sprint results including the winners and place-getters dating back to 2000 can be found on our Champions Sprint Winners & Results page, and used to help you with Champions Sprint betting this spring.

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