horse racing info

Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival 2020

The Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival is the highlight of Australia's racing year, bringing together the best Australian and International thoroughbreds for 50 days of world-class horse racing action.

Spring racing produces a carnival like atmosphere which brings the city of Melbourne to life during spring time.

Melbourne's major racing carnival each spring is the four-day Melbourne Cup Carnival at Flemington Racecourse in early November. Flemington is home to Melbourne Cup Day, Australia's biggest race day, on the first Tuesday in November each year.

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In October, the three-day Caulfield Cup carnival kicks off big-time racing at Caulfield Racecourse, with WS Cox Plate day upping the ante the following week at Moonee Valley Racecourse.

Sandown Classic day rounds at the metropolitan spring carnival at Sandown Racecourse in November, one week after the Flemington carnival ends on Mackinnon Stakes day.

The new racing season kicks off in early August with the Aurie's Star Handicap, the first group race of the new season. The first Group 1 race takes place in late August with the running of the Memsie Stakes at Caulfield.

Spring Carnival Feature Races

Several high quality feature races take place in the early spring. Then we get to the important Caulfield, Moonee Valley and Flemington racing carnivals in late October and early November.

The Caulfield Cup is the second of the big spring distance races. It's a tough Group 1 handicap event over 2400m that takes place in October at Caulfield racecourse. The Caulfield Cup forms part of the big feature spring cups double with the Melbourne Cup.

Moonee Valley racecourse is home to the Group 1 WS Cox Plate over 2040m in October. The Cox Plate is recognised far and wide as the weight-for-age championship of Australasia and takes place one week after the Caulfield Cup.

The jewel in the spring racing carnival's crown is Australia's most famous race, the time-honoured Melbourne Cup. Our greatest race is always run on the first Tuesday in November over a distance of 3200m (2 miles) at Flemington racecourse in Melbourne.

Sportsbet is our preferred spring bookie. Read our Sportsbet Review to learn more.

2020 Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival Guide

Saturday 11th July 2020, Caulfield, VIC
Status Race Name Prize Money Distance Race Type
Group 3Sir John Monash Stakes$135,0001100mWFA
Saturday 25th July 2020, Caulfield, VIC
Status Race Name Prize Money Distance Race Type
Group 3Bletchingly Stakes$150,0001200mWeight-for-age
Saturday 8th August 2020, Flemington, VIC
Status Race Name Prize Money Distance Race Type
Group 3Auries Star Handicap$160,0001200mOpen Hcp
Saturday 15th August 2020, Caulfield, VIC
Status Race Name Prize Money Distance Race Type
Group 2PB Lawrence Stakes$200,0001400mWFA
Group 3Quezette Stakes$160,0001100m3yoF SW+P
Group 3Vain Stakes$160,0001100m3yoC&G SW+P
Saturday 29th August 2020, Caulfield, VIC
Status Race Name Prize Money Distance Race Type
Group 1Memsie Stakes$1,000,0001400mWFA
Group 3HDF McNeil Stakes$150,0001200m3yo SW+P
Group 3Cockram Stakes$150,0001200mMares SW+P
Group 3The Heath 1100$150,0001100m4yo&Up SW + P
Saturday 5th September 2020, Moonee Valley, VIC
Status Race Name Prize Money Distance Race Type
Group 2Feehan Stakes$250,0001600mWFA
Group 2McEwen Stakes$150,0001000mWFA
Saturday 12th September 2020, Flemington, VIC
Status Race Name Prize Money Distance Race Type
Group 1Makybe Diva Stakes$750,0001600mWFA
Group 2Lets Elope Stakes$200,0001400mMares SW+P
Group 2Danehill Stakes$200,0001200m3yo SW+P
Group 3Bobbie Lewis Quality$200,0001200mQuality Hcp
Saturday 19th September 2020, Caulfield, VIC
Status Race Name Prize Money Distance Race Type
Group 1Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes$500,0001400mOpen Hcp
Group 3Naturalism Stakes$150,0002000mOpen Hcp
Group 3How Now Stakes$150,0001200mMares SW+P
Friday 25th September 2020, Moonee Valley, VIC
Status Race Name Prize Money Distance Race Type
Group 1AJ Moir Stakes$450,0001000mWFA
Group 2WH Stocks Stakes$200,0001600mMares WFA
Group 2Stutt Stakes$200,0001600m3yo Open SW
Group 3JRA Cup$200,0002040mOpen Hcp
Group 3Champagne Stakes$150,0001200m3yoF SW
Sunday 27th September 2020, Caulfield, VIC
Status Race Name Prize Money Distance Race Type
Group 1Underwood Stakes$750,0001800mWFA
Group 2Thousand Guineas Prelude$200,0001400m3yoF SW+P
Group 3Caulfield Guineas Prelude$175,0001400m3yoC&G SW+P
Saturday 3rd October 2020, Flemington, VIC
Status Race Name Prize Money Distance Race Type
Group 1Turnbull Stakes$500,0002000m4yo+ SW+P
Group 2Edward Manifold Stakes$200,0001600m3yoF SW
Group 2Gilgai Stakes$200,0001200m3yo+ SW+P
Group 2Rose Of Kingston Stakes$200,0001400mMares SW+P
Group 3The Bart Cummings$300,0002500mQuality Hcp
Saturday 10th October 2020, Caulfield, VIC
Status Race Name Prize Money Distance Race Type
Group 1Caulfield Guineas$2,000,0001600m3yo Open SW
Group 1Caulfield Stakes$1,000,0002000mWFA
Group 1Toorak Handicap$500,0001600mOpen Hcp
Group 1Thousand Guineas$500,0001600m3yoF Open SW
Group 2Schillaci Stakes$400,0001100mWFA
Group 2Herbert Power Stakes$400,0002400mQuality Hcp
Group 3Thoroughbred Club Stakes$150,0001200m3yoF SW+P
Group 3Northwood Plume Stakes$150,0001200mMares - SW+P
Sunday 11th October 2020, Cranbourne, VIC
Status Race Name Prize Money Distance Race Type
ListedCranbourne Cup$300,0002025mOpen Hcp
Wednesday 14th October 2020, Caulfield, VIC
Status Race Name Prize Money Distance Race Type
Group 3Blue Sapphire Stakes$350,0001200m3yo SW
Group 3Coongy Handicap$150,0002000mOpen Hcp
Group 3Ladies Day Vase$150,0001600mMares - SW+P
Saturday 17th October 2020, Caulfield, VIC
Status Race Name Prize Money Distance Race Type
Group 1Caulfield Cup$5,000,0002400mOpen Hcp
Group 2Tristarc Stakes$200,0001400mMares SW+P
Group 2Caulfield Sprint$200,0001100mOpen Hcp
Group 3Caulfield Classic$350,0002000m3yo Open SW
Group 3Moonga Stakes$150,0001400m4yo+ SW+P
Group 3Ethereal Stakes$150,0002000m3yoF SW+P
Sunday 18th October 2020, Seymour, VIC
Status Race Name Prize Money Distance Race Type
ListedSeymour Cup$150,0001600mOpen Hcp
Wednesday 21st October 2020, Geelong, VIC
Status Race Name Prize Money Distance Race Type
Group 3Geelong Cup$300,0002400mOpen Hcp
Friday 23rd October 2020, Moonee Valley, VIC
Status Race Name Prize Money Distance Race Type
Group 1Manikato Stakes$1,000,0001200mWFA
Saturday 24th October 2020, Moonee Valley, VIC
Status Race Name Prize Money Distance Race Type
Group 1WS Cox Plate$5,000,0002040mWFA
Group 2Moonee Valley Cup$500,0002500m4yo+ SW+P
Group 2Crystal Mile$200,0001600mWFA
Group 2Moonee Valley Vase$200,0002040m3yo SW
Group 2Moonee Valley Oaks$200,0001600m3yoF SW
Group 3Red Anchor Stakes$150,0001200m3yo Sw+P
Group 3Inglis Mile$150,0001600m4yo+ Mares Hcp
Wednesday 28th October 2020, Bendigo, VIC
Status Race Name Prize Money Distance Race Type
Group 3Bendigo Cup$300,0002400mOpen Hcp
Saturday 31st October 2020, Flemington, VIC
Status Race Name Prize Money Distance Race Type
Group 1Victoria Derby$2,000,0002500m3yo SW
Group 1Cantala Stakes$1,000,0001600mQuality Hcp
Group 1Coolmore Stud Stakes$1,000,0001200m3yo SW
Group 1Empire Rose Stakes$500,0001600mF&M WFA
Group 2Wakeful Stakes$300,0002000m3yoF SW+P
Group 2Linlithgow Stakes$300,0001200mOpen Hcp
Group 3Hotham Handicap$300,0002500mQuality Hcp
Group 3Begonia Belle Stakes$200,0001100mMares - SW+P
Group 3Carbine Club Stakes$200,0001600m3yo SW+P
Tuesday 3rd November 2020, Flemington, VIC
Status Race Name Prize Money Distance Race Type
Group 1Melbourne Cup$7,300,0003200mOpen Hcp
Group 3Maybe Mahal Stakes$200,0001400mF&M SW+P
Group 3Ottawa Stakes$150,0001000m2yoF SW
Thursday 5th November 2020, Flemington, VIC
Status Race Name Prize Money Distance Race Type
Group 1VRC Oaks$1,000,0002500m3yoF SW
Group 3Red Roses Stakes$200,0001000m3yoF SW+P
Group 3Maribyrnong Plate$150,0001000m2yo SW
Saturday 7th November 2020, Flemington, VIC
Status Race Name Prize Money Distance Race Type
Group 1Emirates Stakes$2,000,0002000mWFA
Group 1VRC Sprint Classic$1,000,0001200mWFA
Group 2Matriarch Stakes$300,0002000mMares SW+P
Group 3VRC Queen Elizabeth Stakes$300,0002600mQuality Hcp
Group 3Chatham Stakes$250,0001400mOpen Hcp
Saturday 14th November 2020, Sandown, VIC
Status Race Name Prize Money Distance Race Type
Group 2Sandown Classic$300,0002400m2yo+ Open WFA
Group 2Sandown Guineas$250,0001600m3yo SW
Group 3Kevin Heffernan Stakes$150,0001300mWFA
Group 3Sandown Stakes$150,0001500mQuality Hcp
Group 3Eclipse Stakes$150,0001800mQuality Hcp
Group 3Summoned Stakes$150,0001500mMares - SW+P
Saturday 21st November 2020, Ballarat, VIC
Status Race Name Prize Money Distance Race Type
ListedBallarat Cup$300,0002200mOpen Hcp

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Other Australian Racing Carnivals

Carnivals below include the Melbourne autumn carnival, Sydney autumn and spring carnivals, plus Adelaide, Brisbane, Perth, Tasmania, and the Gold Coast Magic Millions in Queensland.

Spring Racing Carnival Prize Money Increases

In August 2019, Racing Victoria announced a huge prize money boost for the spring racing carnival in Victoria.

A record 16 races now offer prize money of $1 million or more, plus 21 Group 1 races headlining the carnival from September to November.

Country racing also benefit with prize money increases to major Country Cups, including the Ballarat Cup, Cranbourne Cup, Geelong Cup and Bendigo Cup.

A Cox Plate bonus and Jockey bonus were also announced, amongst others, further boosting the excitement factor of Australia's best racing carnival.

Cox Plate Bonus

Any horse that has won or wins the following Victorian feature races in 2019 and the 2019 Cox Plate will be eligible for a $1 million bonus.

The All-Star Mile Australian Guineas Australian Cup
Alister Clark Stakes Memsie Stakes Makybe Diva Stakes
Feehan Stakes Underwood Stakes Turnbull Stakes
Toorak Handicap Caulfield Guineas Thousand Guineas
Caulfield Stakes    

Three Year Old Bonus (One)

Any three-year-old that contests the following races and wins the 2020 Cox Plate is eligible for a $1 million bonus.

  • Stutt Stakes (1600m) - Moonee Valley (Sep 25)
  • Caulfield Guineas Prelude (1400m) - Caulfield (Sep 27)
  • Thousand Guineas Prelude (1400m) - Caulfield (Sep 27)
  • Caulfield Guineas (1600m) - Caulfield (Oct 10)
  • Thousand Guineas (1600m) - Caulfield (Oct 10)

Three Year Old Bonus (Two)

Any three-year-old that contests the following races and wins the $500,000 Carbine Club Stakes (1600m) at Flemington on Saturday 31st october 2020 is eligible for a $1 million bonus.

  • Stutt Stakes (1600m) - Moonee Valley (Sep 25)
  • Caulfield Guineas Prelude (1400m) - Caulfield (Sep 27)
  • Thousand Guineas Prelude (1400m) - Caulfield (Sep 27)
  • Caulfield Guineas (1600m) - Caulfield (Oct 10)
  • Thousand Guineas (1600m) - Caulfield (Oct 10)

Three Year Old Bonus (Three)

Any three-year-old that places first, second or third in the $500,000 Blue Sapphire Stakes (1200m) on Wednesday 12th October 2020 at Caulfield and wins the $1,500,000 Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m) at Flemington on Saturday 31st October2020 is eligible for a $500,000 bonus.

Cantala Stakes Bonus

Any horse that places in the following two races and wins the $2,000,000 Cantala STakes on Saturday 2nd November 2019 will be eligible for a $500,000 bonus.

  • Toorak Handicap (1600m) - Caulfield (Sep 10)
  • Crystal Mile (1600m) - Moonee Valley (Oct 24)

Country Cup Prize Money Increases

Ballarat Cup Day received a major spring boost with prize money increased from $350,000 to $500,000 making it the Australia's richest country cup.

The race itself is now 2000m, reduced from 2200m, and the popular raceday falls on the final day of the spring racing carnival on on Saturday 23rd November 2019.

All nine races on Ballarat Cup Day offer minimum prize money of $125,000, while the Magic Millions 2YO Clockwise Classic (1000m) increased from $200,000 to $250,000. The Magic Millions 3&4YO Classic (1100m) also increased, from $100,000 to $150,000.

Other Country Cup prize money increases include the following three races.

  • Cranbourne Cup (2025m) - $400,000 (up $50,000)
  • Geelong Cup (2400m) - $400,000 (up $50,000)
  • Bendigo Cup (2400m) - $400,000 (up $50,000)

The Melbourne spring racing carnival in Victoria is where the best racehorses gather for spring!

Star of the Saddle

Along with the prize money increases, the 'Star of the Saddle' series was also announced, recognising and rewarding those jockeys who achieve distinction during the spring racing carnival.

The following cash prizes are on offer for the jockey who is the Star of the Saddle', and accruing the most points on each day.

  • Turnbull Stakes Day - Flemington (Oct 3) - $50,000
  • Caulfield Guineas Day - Caulfield (October 10) - $50,000
  • Caulfield Cup Day - Caulfield (Oct 17) - $100,000
  • Cox Plate Carnival - Moonee Valley (Oct 23-24) - $100,000 - (Brent Thomson Jockey Challenge)
  • Victoria Derby Day - Flemington (Oct 31) - $100,000

Star of the Saddle conditions are released prior to the commencement of the spring racing carnival.


Legend
2yo: Two-year-old
2yoC&G: Two-year-old Colts and Geldings
2yoF: Two-year-old Fillies
2yo&Up: Two-year-old horses and Upwards
3yo: Three-year-old
3yoC&G: Three-year-old Colts and Geldings
3yoF: Three-year-old Fillies
3yo&Up: Three-year-old an upwards
F&M: Fillies and Mares
Mares: Four-year-old and up female horses
SW+Pen: Set Weights + Penalty
Open Hcp: Open Handicap
Qlty Hcp: Quality Handicap
WFA: Weight-for-age
Gr 1: Group 1 race
Gr 2: Group 2 race
Gr 3: Group 3 race
LR: Listed race