New Zealanders flocked to take part in the Melbourne Cup at record levels yesterday, with more money spent on the Cup and the day itself than ever before.
Sales on the Melbourne Cup, won by the Australian stayer Without A Fight, reached $13.4 million, 14% more than last year, and racing turnover on the day topped $28.4m, a 10% increase on the first Tuesday in November in 2022. Kiwis were paid out more than $10m in winnings from the Melbourne Cup alone.
Cameron Rodger, the New Zealand Managing Director of Entain – the operator of the TAB – said the Cup continues to be a huge drawcard for New Zealanders.
“On the back of The Everest in Sydney in mid-October doubling in turnover, and the recent injection into stakes and other initiatives within New Zealand, we’re seeing record numbers engaging with the racing industry through TAB,’’ Cameron Rodger said.
“Since we began operating TAB earlier this year, we have seen the appetite is well and truly there from New Zealanders to get involved with quality racing and yesterday’s results confirm that.”
As well as the record turnover figures, the online presence through tab.co.nz and the TAB app continues to rise. The number of TAB accounts used yesterday reached 127,000, up 15% on last year.
At the height of interest in the race shortly before the 5pm race start, 6,850 bets were being processed each minute, and at one point, more than 50,000 people were accessing tab.co.nz or the app – a number only exceeded in 2021 when Covid restrictions were in place.
While the Melbourne Cup has been run and won for another year, racing fans still have plenty to look forward to with the action continuing from Flemington this week.
“We’re expecting plenty of interest in the final two days of the Melbourne Cup Carnival, with Oaks Day tomorrow and Champions Stakes Day on Saturday,” Cameron Rodger said.
“Saturday will see Kiwi sprinting star Imperatriz shoot for another Group 1 in the Champions Sprint and we know she’ll be deservedly popular with customers, as too will Prowess, last season’s Champion Middle-Distance horse, who contests the Group 1 Champions Stakes.”
Big winning bets on Without A Fight:
- $5,500 on Without A Fight (Boosted Odds) @ $9 returned $49,500
- $5,000 on Without A Fight (Boosted Odds) @ $9 returned $45,000
- $10,000 on Without A Fight @ $7.50 to return $75,000
Big winning returns on the Melbourne Cup
- $40 First4 at Johnsonville TAB returned $112,979
- $25 First4 at Cambridge TAB returned $79,750
- $4 First4 at Grand Slam Sports Bar, Auckland returned $56,489
- $2 First4 at Levin Sports Bar returned $39,875
- $100 First4 at Cameron Road TAB returned $26,583
- $200 First4 at Manukau City TAB returned $19,937
- $5 First4 returned $106,333
- $1,008 First4 returned $66,458
- $10 First4 returned $63,135