Horses racing on Flemington straight

The Melbourne Cup Carnival attracts huge crowds each year. It continues to be recognised as the highlight of the Australian racing calendar, and draws attendees from across Melbourne, Victoria, Australia and internationally.

The Cup was always the most popular race of the year until a new trend emerged in 2001, when both Derby Day and Oaks Day attendances surpassed Cup Day as the popularity of Melbourne Cup Carnival exploded. When Makybe Diva won the first of her three Cups in 2003 the official attendance was a record 122,736, which was only surpassed by the Derby Day crowd of 129,089 in 2006. In 2007, the VRC introduced a new ticketing strategy which would cap attendance figures at 120,000 to avoid overcrowding.

Melbourne Cup Carnival track attendances
Year Derby Cup Oaks Stakes Total
2014 90,244 100,794 64,430  70,051  325,519  
2013 95,223  104,169  66,757 65,047 331,196 
2012 98,823 106,162 71,825 74,546 351,356
2011 92,336 105,979 71,659 85,112 355,086
2010 90,361 110,223 75,088 77,506 353,178
2009 108,178 102,161 80,112 78,478 368,929
2008 117,776 107,280 89,338 81,652 396,046
2007 115,705 102,411 95,230 84,067 397,413
2006 129,089 106,691 104,131 78,158 418,069
2005 115,660 106,479 100,263 61,382 383,784
2004 115,542 98,161 110,677 45,734 370,114
2003 97,059 122,736 101,179 55,793 376,767
2002 101,898 102,533 103,269 47,593 355,293
2001 93,029 92,477 101,201 42,760 329,467
2000 92,581 121,015 96,406 42,311 352,313
1999 76,514 104,028 83,870 31,728 296,140
1998 75,805 100,607 77,301 31,249 284,962
1997 64,528  94,143 75,482 26,357 260,510
1996 64,099 90,149 67,086 25,736 247,070
1995 60,404 74,843 62,388 25,318 222,953
1994 54,467 81,650 50,176 22,624 208,917
1993 49,029 74,766  46,744 22,162 192,701
1992 45,729 86,206 50,925 21,495 204,355
1991 46,781 94,632 54,023 22,587 218,023
1990 47,497 92,536 50,196 21,414 211,643
1989 47,226 96,722 51,673 23,712 219,333
1988 44,848 93,440 48,490 23,341 210,119
1987 41,878 81,012 45,329 22,196 190,415
1986 42,824 87,129 42,649 21,051 193,653
1985 40,522 79,126 39,051 18,675 177,374
1984 39,771 82,740 40,812 19,739 183,062
1983 40,017 80,776 38,633 22,162 181,588
1982 42,519 91,152 37,028 19,725 190,424
1981 39,729 87,641 37,353 24,378 189,101
1980 38,032 101,261 37,098 25,262 201,653

Playing host to 14 Group 1 races each year, Flemington attracts champion racehorses across all distances. The racecourse has been the setting for record-breaking wins by legendary thoroughbreds including Black Cavier and Makybe Diva, which remain track records to this day.

Flemington track records

Distance (m) Time Date Horse
1000 0-55.42  16 Feb 2013 Black Caviar
1100   1-02.15  2 Mar 2013  Loveyamadly
1200   1-07.16  1 Jan 2001  Iglesia 
1400   1-20.60 12 Dec 1992  Lovey
1600  1-33.49  9 Nov 2002  Scenic Peak 
1700   1-40.83 16 Feb 2013 Niconoise
1800   1-47.05 2 Nov 1999 Depeche Mode 
2000   1-58.73  12 Mar 2005 Makybe Diva
2500   2-33.00 7 Nov 1992  Kawtuban 
2600   2-41.00 2 Oct 1965 Jovial Knight 
2800 2-52.40 6 Nov 2012  Verdant (GB)
3200 3-16.30  6 Nov 1990 Kingston Rule (USA)