Almanac Horseracing: The 2023 Melbourne Cup revisited (by a once a year non-punter)


‘Melbourne Cup’: Art Work by Kate Birrell


Well, that’s done and dusted for another year. How are your pockets? If you followed Sal’s predictions you probably got a few dollars back. Not sure about the Almanac’s selections. After all, how the hell do you make sense of this?




It makes about as much sense as this!


Where S = Total (lowest score wins)
xp =  the predicted position of the team
xa = actual position of the team




I’m your typical Australian who watches just this one race each year. I did attend the Cup once just after I retired. It was 2013 when Gai finally cracked it with Fiorente. Interesting cultural experience, enjoyed the champers in the car park, saw Kochie being transported around in a golf buggy, lost my glasses but, thankfully, not the shirt off my back! Meh, been there, done that. Oakbank in 1975 was more enjoyable, even if it did rain. Andy and I won enough to shout ourselves dinner at the Hotel Australia in North Adelaide that night. Fos and Boomer, who supposedly knew a bit, got skint!


Horseracing is a bit like a foreign language to me but it’s not too hard to pick up bits of the lingo and appreciate a few of the nuances of it all. Today it was the cleverness of Mark Zahra’s ride on the winner. Picked his moment beautifully and, all of a sudden, it was all over by the time they got to the clocktower. I can’t help but think that he couldn’t believe that he got such a good passage. Also shows what a good judge of a horse he is after passing up a ride on last year’s winner.


Just in case you missed it or haven’t seen a replay, here it is again in full:



So that’s it for another year. Remember to spend your winnings responsibly!


PS  At the last school I taught at, the boss was less than comfortable with betting in any way, shape or form. Come Melbourne Cup, discretion was the order of the day. I recall two codes used for running a sweep. One was to call it ‘tickets for a broom’, the other was for ‘tickets on the bus’ (the school ran a fleet of buses for students from distant suburbs). At the previous school, the Headmaster was more ‘progressive’ and, in fact, won the sweep one year with ‘What a Nuisance’ – a bloody nuisance indeed as he was even less interested in horse racing than me!


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About Ian Hauser

A relaxed, Noosa-based retiree with a (very) modest sporting CV. A loyal Queenslander, especially when it comes to cricket and rugby league. Enjoys travel, coffee and cake, reading, and has been known to appreciate a glass or three of wine. One of Footy Almanac's online editors who enjoys the occasional editing opportunity to assist aspiring writers.

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