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Melbourne Cup ladies... From left (back) Jemimia, Miri, Litia and Doree ready to watch the race at the Suva Bowling Club

For all horse lovers and gamblers the biggest racing and gambling event of the year is here again - the Melbourne Cup!

And for those interested, you can place bets at any Grants Waterhouse outlet throughout Fiji.

Apart from the actual betting places, people can also see the wackiest and the best hat designs by local talents at The Holiday Inn and The
Fiji Club today.

The Melbourne Cup is Australia?s major annual thoroughbred race.

Commonly billed as the race that stops a nation the event is held on the first Tuesday in November by the Victoria Racing Club on the Flemington Racecourse in Melbourne.

The hype of the Melbourne Cup is both felt on the international and local scene.

Grants Waterhouse is the local betting house situated in Rodwell Road Suva.

According to the Managing Director of Grants Waterhouse Peter McCoy the
Melbourne Cup is the biggest and the busiest event of the year.

The race is an open one as there are only eight Australian horses, and the rest are international horses.

Seventeen horses contested the first Melbourne Cup in 1861, racing for 170 cash and a gold watch.

The race carries an AUD$500,000 bonus to the owner for any horse that can win the Irish St Leger (G1) and the Melbourne Cup in the one year.

Most wins:
3 - Makybe Diva (2003, 2004, 2005)
2 - Archer (1861, 1862)
2 - Peter Pan (1932, 1934)
2 - Rain Lover (1968, 1969)
2 - Think Big (1974, 1975)

Most wins by an owner:
4 - Etienne L. de Mestre (1861, 1862, 1867, 1878)
4 - John Tait (1866, 1868, 1871, 1872)

Most wins by a jockey:
4 - Bobby Lewis (1902, 1915, 1919, 1927)
4 - Harry White (1974, 1975, 1978, 1979)

Most wins by a trainer:
11 - Bart Cummings (1965, 1966, 1967, 1974, 1975, 1977, 1979, 1990,
1991, 1996, 1999)
5 - Etienne L. de Mestre (1861, 1862, 1867, 1877, 1878)
5 - Lee Freedman (1989, 1992, 1995, 2004, 2005)

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