In Promotional Events by Clyde Mooney

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Contributed by ‘Melbourne Cup’ Max Hitchins*


Yesterday (2 Nov) I attended a function at O’Connell’s Pub in South Melbourne. It was a gathering organised by Richard Pegum, head for the Brew Syndicate (pictured), who won the 2000 Melbourne Cup. Thirty Melbourne Cup owners and trainers attended the function.

Max Hitchins and Richard Pegum

I was there to share my ‘statistics approach’ to the Melbourne Cup. Now, I want to tell what I shared with them, and relay what they shared with me – by way of ‘Did You Know’ trivia-style questions.

  • Did you know: the final 2017 Melbourne Cup field will not be known until after the running of the Lexus Stakes at 1.40pm Melbourne time on Saturday 4/11/17?
  • Did you know: the last 8-year-old to win the Cup was in 1938, and before that 1865?
  • Did you know: there looks like there will be at least five 8-year-olds in the 2018 Melbourne Cup?
  • Did you know: male horses usually win the Cup? Only 16 females have won since 1861 (Boo!)
  • Did you know: the Melbourne Cup winner will more than likely be under 20, 21?
  • Did you know: international horses usually need to ‘have a run’ in Australia if they are to succeed in winning the Melbourne Cup?
  • Did you know: the only horse, so far, to win the Melbourne Cup without ‘having a run’ beforehand was Vintage Crop, in 1993?
  • Did you know: in Tuesday’s Cup there looks like being at least five horses who will not have ‘had a run’ in Australia before starting?
  • Did you know: since 1993 there have been 91 international horses attempt to win the Melbourne Cup without ‘having a run’ in Australia before the Cup?
  • Did you know: no horse has ever won from Barrier 18?
  • Did you know: #5 & #11 are the luckiest barriers?
  • Did you know: saddle cloths 4 and 12 are the luckiest?
  • Did you know: only seven grey horses have ever won the Cup? The last one was Efficient, in 2007
  • Did you know: nowadays international horses usually win? (In 2016, only four out of 24 were bred in Australia)
  • Did you know: predominantly Blue (41), Black (33), Yellow (30) are the most successful jockeys colours?
  • Did you know: favourites have won 22 per cent of the Melbourne Cups since 1861? The last one was Fiorente in 2013
  • Did you know: no horses starting with the letters I, Q, U, X, or Y have ever won the Melbourne Cup?


(Editor’s note)

Did you know: Max Hitchin’s Melbourne Cup System has been successful 25 out of the last 29 years? And that in 2016 the system chose both 1st and 2nd place?

You can download Max’s System (above) for free at


Melbourne Cup trophies at lunch at Union Hotel North Sydney