By Simon Jackson.
Michelle Payne created history as the first female jockey to win the Emirates Melbourne Cup when winning Australia’s greatest race on 100-1 shot Prince of Penzance.
The Darren Weir-trained six-year-old belied his long odds after travelling well throughout the race for his 30-year-old jockey. The pair swept to the lead 200metres out and ran on strongly to repel the late challenge of the Willie Mullins-trained Max Dynamite. Australian runner Criterion was third and Ed Dunlop’s Trip To Paris fourth.
“It is unbelievable. It is like a dream come true and this horse is awesome,” Payne said immediately after the historic victory. “It is all down to Darren Weir and all of his staff as they got this horse here in the best shape he could be in and I am so grateful and thankful to them and all of the owners.
“When I won on this horse as a three-year-old, he won here and I thought ‘this is a Melbourne Cup horse’ and he just felt like he would run the two miles but I didn’t think he would be that strong.
“He was still towing me into the straight and he just burst to the front and he was powering to the line and this is unbelievable.
“When he came down the straight the first time he became a bit steady and I had to give him a bit of a dig. I didn’t want to but I wanted to hold the spot where I wanted to be. We travelled quite strongly the whole way. From the 1000m everything just opened up.
“We got on to the back of Trip To Paris who took me into the race and I couldn’t believe I was travelling that well. The he just got into the straight and burst through.”
In other Cup news, second-placed Max Dynamite’s jockey, Frankie Dettori, was suspended for a month and fined AUS $20,000 for careless riding.
The Ed Dunlop trained Red Cadeaux has been retired after he was pulled up near the finish. The winner of almost £5million finished second in the Melbourne Cup three times. He is being treated at a veterinary clinic for a fetlock injury.
Read ‘Horse Talk with Simon Jackson’ at London24 for the latest horse racing news.