Melbourne Cup Betting

Darley Champions Stakes Cross Counter winning the Melbourne Cup (PA Images)

Melbourne Cup Betting Offers and Full Guide

The Melbourne Cup is Australia’s most famous horse race and it is held annually on the first Tuesday in November. The race takes place over 3200 metres at Flemington Racecourse.

We will cover the Melbourne Cup odds and bookmaker offers available, as well as how to understand all the different bet types associated with ‘the race that stops a nation.’

Melbourne Cup Bookmaker Odds & Offers

When it comes to Melbourne Cup betting online, we cannot go past Dabble who offer tremendous value with both their odds and promotional offers.

We cover the Melbourne Cup odds on a regular basis.

All bookmakers in Australia cover the Melbourne Cup and here is a list of bookmakers that we recommend you consider when placing a bet on the Melbourne Cup.

Best Bookmakers for Australian Horse Racing

Melbourne Cup Betting Guide – Understanding the Facts and Figures

There are many factors to consider before placing a bet on the Melbourne Cup, or any horse race for that matter. We will discuss the key factors required to understand horse racing form.


Looking at the betting odds will show you which horses are favoured, and which horses are less likely to perform well.

The favourite for a race will be the horse with the shortest odds. That is because they are perceived to have the highest winning chance in the race. For example, a horse that is $5, is expected to win the race 20% of the time.

To calculate this, we use 1 divided by 5 multiplied by 100.

If the favourite is $2.50, we would calculate it as 1 / 2.5 * 100 = 40%.

When assessing a horse race after odds have been released, it is worthwhile starting with the favourites and assessing their form before moving to look at the roughies to see if any of them have a chance of causing an upset.


Handicap races such as the Melbourne Cup will have a spread of different weights and horses with a lighter weight can often be advantaged, especially over a longer distance such as the two miles of the Melbourne Cup.

When assessing Melbourne Cup form, looking at horses that are racing in good form and carrying a lighter weight of 53.5kg or less can be a good starting point.

Some horses excel at carrying heavier weights too so weight alone is only one factor to assess and shouldn’t be used to completely rule a horse out.

Barrier Draw Bias

Barrier draws are important in racing and drawing a favourable or unfavourable barrier can be the difference between winning or losing.

Inside barriers tend to have a slightly higher winning percentage than wider draws and that is because horses drawn closer to the fence can often slot in easier and have less ground to cover in the race.

In the Melbourne Cup recently, wider barrier draws haven’t been a hindrance for some winners so it is one race where a horse may draw wider but still be able to win the race as it is a two-mile staying event where jockeys have more time to plan their riding moves.

Recent Finishing Positions/Form

Analysing the previous runs for each horse is the best way to assess the form for a horse.

Looking at numerical form such as 33×217 can be a good guide at a quick glance but you will most likely need to delve deeper to understand how well the horse is travelling. In our example, this horse has had three runs back from a spell and was a last start seventh placing. When we dig deeper, the horse may have only been beaten 2.2 lengths after running home from last so its run may be just as good as the run it had before that when winning.

Just remember, a horse may finish sixth in a race and that run itself could be better than a horse that finished second at its most recent start. You need to factor in the class of race, times, quality of opposition, type of run it had etc.

Jockey and Trainer

Jockeys and trainers contribute significantly to a horse’s racing form with the jockey controlling the horse throughout the running of the race. Regardless of how well the jockey may ride the horse, if it isn’t prepared well enough for the race, then it will not win. This is where the trainer comes in.

Champion trainers such as Chris Waller know how to have their horses at peak fitness for their major target each preparation. Once the right jockey is then booked for the ride, the horse will have every chance to be successful.

Knowing which trainers are most successful, and just as important, in good form, will go a long way to finding the winner of the Melbourne Cup. These trainers will have their horse cherry ripe for the Melbourne Cup.

A jockey that is riding in good form is another positive, so it is worthwhile to assess how well the trainer, jockey and horse are performing leading into the race.

Reading Race Comments

Some form guides will have race comments and it is another advantage knowing how to read them. You also want to know where a horse raced in the run; did it lead and knock up late to run fifth for example. Or did it charge home from the back of the field.

Race comments may explain tempo of the race too as well as comments such as the horse was checked in running, had excuses, or failed to run on after having a perfect trail. Make sure you read race comments if they are available with your form guide of choice.

Track Surface

It is valuable to know the state of the track and whether the horse(s) that you like are advantaged or disadvantaged by the track conditions.

If it appears likely that the track will be a Heavy 8 on the day, then you need to consider the form for horses racing on Heavy tracks, but it would still be important to know the horses form on Soft tracks as the track could be upgraded prior to the meeting or even during the race meeting.

Some horses can handle all track conditions and that is the best-case scenario when analysing the form. Others might be wet-track specialists, or they may not perform at all on Heavy surfaces.

You will be able to see the racing record of horses for each of the track conditions – Good, Slow and Heavy.

Melbourne Cup 2021 Favourites

To Be Updated

Different bet types for the Melbourne Cup 2023

When it comes to Melbourne Cup betting options, there are many different bet types available. Here are the most common Melbourne Cup bet types.

Win: You are backing the horse that you believe will win the Melbourne Cup.
Place: Your horse must come first, second or third in the race.
Each-Way: A combination of a Win and Place bet. Half of your stake will be on the Win and the other half is on the Place.
Quinella: You are backing horses to finish in first and second place in any order. The most common Quinella is picking two horses, but you may pick more horses for this bet type.
Exacta: A bet type where you must get first and second past the post in the correct order.
Trifecta: Similar to a Quinella, except you are looking for first, second and third past the post. Trifecta payouts can be huge in the Melbourne Cup if one of the roughies sneaks into the top three. Mystery trifecta bets are extremely popular on the Melbourne Cup.
First 4: The First Four will have an even bigger payout than a Trifecta as you must correctly identify the first four runners to finish in the correct order.
Quadrella/Quaddie: This bet type covers four consecutive races for the meeting. One of these races will be the Melbourne Cup on Cup Day. You will need to identify the winner of all four races – you can select more than one horse for each leg of the Quaddie.

Melbourne Cup Betting FAQs

Where can I bet on the Melbourne Cup?

Many bookmakers offer Melbourne Cup online betting. Dabble is one of our biggest recommendations, but we have a whole list of bookmakers that we use. Head on over to our bookmaker page by clicking here and see the best online bookmakers to place a bet on the Melbourne Cup with.

How do I bet on the Melbourne Cup?

The easiest way to bet on the Melbourne Cup is by signing into an existing account or registering for a new account. We have listed our favourite bookmakers above. Once you have an account, go to horse racing with your chosen bookmaker. Find the Flemington race meeting and then the Melbourne Cup, which should be Race 7.

What horse is most likely to win the Melbourne Cup?

As of October 23, our top tip for the Melbourne Cup is the Grahame Begg-trained Lunar Flare.

How many horses race in the Melbourne Cup?

A capacity field of 24 horses can race in the Melbourne Cup each year.

Which bookmaker has the best Melbourne Cup betting odds?

We recommend the Dabble app for all your Melbourne Cup betting. They have competitive odds, great promotions and will live stream the race.


The Melbourne Cup is one of the most popular horse races in Australia, and it’s no surprise that people are always looking for tips on how to pick a winner. There are a few key things to keep in mind when choosing your Melbourne Cup horse, and our experts have put together their top Melbourne Cup betting tips to help you pick a winner on race day.



Follow the link to find our free Flemington tips today and best bets for each and every meeting. Our Flemington tipster previews each meeting and highlights a Best Bet, Next Best & Best Value.