Melbourne Cup Prizemoney: How Much Does the Winning Horse Make in 2023?

Melbourne Cup Scratchings

The Melbourne Cup prizemoney is the second richest in Australia, only being trumped by The Everest at Royal Randwick. 

‘The race that stops the nation’ is the 10th richest horse race in the world. The race is held at the Flemington Racecourse on the first Tuesday of November. This year’s race is on the 7th of November.

The 2023 Melbourne Cup has a total prize pool of $8.4 million, slightly up on previous years. The winner of the 2022 Melbourne Cup was Gold Trip, who won $4.7 million as well as the prize for the trophies.

Below is all the information you will need regarding the Melbourne Cup’s past and present prize money situation, including the Melbourne Cup payouts for the horse, jockey, and trainer for the upcoming 2023 Melbourne Cup.

What is the Prizemoney For the Melbourne Cup?

The winning horse will win a total of $4.4 million in Melbourne Cup prizemoney, with the money being distributed to the team of the winning horse. The rest of the prize money is distributed throughout the remaining places. Second place will receive $1.1 million, third will get $550,000, fourth will get $350,000, fifth will receive $230,000 and the remaining horses will get $160,000.

Finishing position Prizemoney
1st $4.4 million
2nd $1.1 million
3rd $550,000
4th $350,000
5th $230,000
6th-12th $160,000

How Much is the Melbourne Cup Trophy Worth?

The Melbourne Cup trophy is still worth a considerable amount of money on top of the already standing prize money. The cup is created out of 18-carat solid gold and is worth an astonishing $250,000. This is contrasted with the original physical ‘trophy’ of a gold watch from the first Melbourne Cup in 1861.

Prizemoney For the Jockey

The Melbourne Cup prizemoney for the winning jockey is allowed up to 5% of the Melbourne Cup payout. They also receive a replica miniature cup valued at $10,000. In most cases, the jockey will also receive a payment for riding the horse on race day.

Prizemoney For the Trainer

The trainer of the winning horse in the Melbourne Cup is permitted to 10% of the Melbourne Cup prize money won by the horse. For the horse that finishes the race in first place, the trainer is entitled to a whopping $440,000 of the $4.4 million prize.

Similarly, to the jockey, the trainer will also receive a mini replica of the Melbourne Cup, which is also valued at $10,000, as a reward for ensuring that the horse is in the best condition to run on race day.

Melbourne Cup Prizemoney History

The first-ever Melbourne Cup was held at Flemington Racecourse in 1861, with the prize being 710 gold sovereigns and a gold watch. It didn’t take long for the prize money to start rising. in 1890 it hit a high of £13,230.

During the second world war, the winning owner of the Melbourne Cup would receive war bonds valued at 200 pounds (1942-44). In 1985, the Melbourne Cup became the first horse race in Australia to have $1 million in prize money. 20 years later, the total went up to $5 million, and since 2019 the prize money has been set at $8 million for all horses combined.

Year Prizemoney
2023 $8.4 million
2019-22 $8 million
2018 $7.3 million
2012-17 $6.2 million
2005 $5 million
2001 $4.035 million
2000 $3 million
1995 $2 million
1985 $1 million
1984 $525,000
1979 $310,000
1978 $210,000
1977 $156,700
1971 $102,000
1969 $77,000
1966 $62,000
1965 £30,750
1963 £25,000
1962 £20,750
1954 £15,500
1947 £10,000
1931 £7,000
1922 £12,624
1917 £7,779
1913 £9,519
1910 £6,178
1895 £3,667
1890 £13,230
1881 £2,105
1865 £1,034
1861 £710 + Gold Watch

How does the Melbourne Cup Prizemoney Compare to Other International Horse Races?

The current Melbourne Cup’s prize money tally is ranked 10th in the world for the richest horse races. The Melbourne Cup’s $8 million is the most reputable and prestigious race in the world but is the 2nd richest race in Australia behind The Everest ($15 million).

The Saudi Cup is by far the richest horse race in the world juxtaposed to the Melbourne Cup payout, with the winnings amounting to $20 million.

Although the Melbourne Cup winnings haven’t progressed as high as other Group 1 races around the world, ‘the race that stops the nation’ is still highly ranked in both prize money and prestige compared to other international horse races.


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 expert picks & tips to help you select a winner on race day.

At racingbase.com.au, you may also check out our best bets of the day section where our expert tipsters pick out the best betting selections from across Australian horse racing.

 

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