Vow and Declare has been nominated to defend his crown in the Lexus Melbourne Cup (Image: Racing Photos)
One hundred and seventy four nominations have been received for the 160th running of the world-famous $8 million Group 1 Lexus Melbourne Cup (3200m).
Nominations for the ‘race that stops a nation’™ closed at 12pm today and the Victoria Racing Club (VRC) is thrilled to see a long list of quality Australian and international stayers amongst the entries.
Joining defending champion Vow and Declare from the Danny O’Brien stable, isone of the country’s most exciting horses Russian Camelot, Kennedy Oaks winner Miami Bound and King of Leogrance, who narrowly missed direct entry into the Lexus Melbourne Cup when second to fellow nominee Oceanex in The Andrew Ramsden.
Star gallopers such as Verry Elleegant, Warning, Constantinople, Finche and Master of Wine headline the nominations for Flemington-based trainers, while Surprise Baby and Haky keep the dream alive for country-trained stayers.
Connections of the UK’s Prince of Arran have nominated in the hope that it will be third time lucky for the popular horse who placed third in 2018 and second in 2019. Other well-credentialed internationally-trained nominees include Master of Reality, Santiago and Anthony Van Dyck.
In a year where international travel is restricted, there are many high class horses on a one-way ticket to Australia from Europe. Some of those nominated include Le Don De Vie, Sir Dragonet, Dashing Willoughby and Nickajack Cave.
VRC Chairman Amanda Elliott said “The 2020 Lexus Melbourne Cup holds extra significance this year as it marks its 160th running. In a challenging year, we celebrate two other great milestones, 90 years since the win of Phar Lap in 1930 and 130 years since the win of the mighty Carbine in 1890. Both of those victories lifted the spirits of the nation during times of financial hardship. This year will be no different, Mrs Elliott said.
“From one of Australia’s leading trainers Chris Waller, yet to win the great race, with 13 nominations, to young Bendigo based trainer Josh Julius with one nomination - they all seek ‘The Holy Grail’.” Every quality stayer is now on the road to the Cup, as connections dream of 3.00pm on that first Tuesday in November.
“We are delighted with the world-class list of nominations, and wish the horses and their connections all the best in their preparations.”
The Lexus Melbourne Cup will be run on Tuesday 3 November as part of the Melbourne Cup Carnival which begins with AAMI Victoria Derby Day on Saturday 31 October and also features Kennedy Oaks Day on Thursday 5 November and Seppelt Wines Stakes Day on Saturday 7 November.
All the action from the 2020 Melbourne Cup Carnival can be seen free to air on Network 10.
The full list of nominations for the 2020 Lexus Melbourne Cup can be found here.