Melbourne cup – The race that stops a nation and wakes me up!

06/11/2017 | By | 2 Replies More

The Melbourne and I cup go back a few years now. Many moons ago, in the early days of my trading career, I got interested in the ‘race that stops a nation’ and learned that it really did stop the nation;  they have a national holiday today in Victoria.

The start, Intrigue and disappointment

In the early part of my career, I completely ignored Australian racing. In fact, I pretty much ignored all overseas racing. So the early part of my career was just focusing on UK events and nearby sports. I hadn’t really considered doing anything else as my hands were full. My mission though was to push the boundaries of what was possible so, inevitably, I turned my attention to any market that had good turnover.

Intrigued by all the fuss surrounding the Melbourne Cup, I got up at 4 am one dark winter Tuesday to see what all the fuss was about. Nothing really happened apart from a lack of sleep and I returned to bed disappointed. Back then, I had converted half the garage in my old house into an office that I could work from. So I slept on the floor that night so as not to disturb the rest of the family. The following year I tried again and did a bit better, but not much. My wife thought I was mad getting up at 4 am to watch a bit of racing.

Gaining traction in traction

As you are often told. If, at first, you don’t succeed; then sleep in the garage some more. Slowly but surely I managed to understand all the dynamics of Australian racing and build my results on the Melbourne Cup. I still hadn’t done much on other Australian racing, however, a fluke changed all that.

I was at the Gym one evening when I badly injured my arm and back. That night my arm had really started to swell up and was really uncomfortable. Unable to sleep and with the use of one arm I pondered what I could do at 3 am in the morning. I walked around a bit, but eventually sat down to look at the Australian markets and started trading them. I’ve been doing them ever since!

Cracking the Melbourne cup

Back to the big race itself. From year three things started to move in the right direction and I built year on year on my knowledge and understanding. In 2008 I had my first three-figure result but little did I imagine that five years year I would net ten times that result. But it’s now a race I must trade each year.

So I look forward to giving it go each year. I go to great lengths now to ensure I’m prepared as possible, so I’m optimistic as to what I can pull out of the big race now. It’s a long way from freezing nights on the garage floor.


A couple of years ago I commented that the turnover of the meeting was falling and was contacted by an expat working in Betfair Australia who corrected my stance. It was falling in GBP terms, but not in AUD terms. Since then I’ve measured the races in AUD. Thanks, Steve. I expect the Melbourne cup to hit around $5m this year. Convert to your local currency to see what that means. Despite BREXIT we are at about the same level in terms of GBP vs AUD as last year and it turned over £3.5m last year. I’ll tweet out this year’s turnover just after the race starts at 4 am this morning!

Hilariously, when I was goggling for some research, the top results for the MC were, Fashion, Trophy and Drunk! For some more insightful research, here is a decent write up. Good luck if you are doing anything on the big race


Tags: , , ,

Category: Horse Racing

About the Author ()

I left a good job in the consumer technology industry to go a trade on Betfair for a living way back in June 2000. I've been here ever since pushing very boundaries of what's possible on betting exchanges and loved every minute of it.

Comments (2)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. Wolf1877 says:

    Peter, I’m interested to know if you use a localised Australian VPS server to help you trade successfully on the Australian markets?

  2. Peter Webb says:

    I used to a few years ago but Betfair have now moved the servers back to the UK so I no longer need to do this.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.