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Flemington racecourse is the home of Australia’s richest race the Melbourne Cup and is arguably Melbourne’s and Australia’s most well known and prestigious racecourse. The racecourse itself is situated in Melbourne suburb Flemington next to the Maribyrnong River, horse racing has taken part in this area of land since 1840.

The Flemington racecourse is made up of 1.27km of Crown land. In 1848 the the racecourse was leased to Victoria Turf Club which merged with Victoria Jockey Club in 1864 to form what is now called the Victorian Racing Club or in short the VRC. In 1871 Victoria Racing Club Act was approved which gave the Victorian Racing Club control of Flemington racecourse.

The first Melbourne Cup to be run was in 1861 which was won by a horse called Archer, you can view our page listing the Melbourne Cup winners.

The racecourse itself can be said to look like a pear (we have made an image of the racecourse below), the full circumference of the racecourse is 2,312 metres with the straight being 450m. The Melbourne Cup is run over 3200m thus runners start in the Straight extension also known as the ‘the Straight Six’ which refers to the 6 furlong (1200m) straight, before making a full completion of the racecourse.

Flemington racecourse comprises of three grandstands and can hold a total of 120,000 people with the biggest attendance ever to the racecourse was on Victoria Derby day in which 129,089 patrons came through the racecourse to see Efficient win the feature race.

The racecourse has a bronze statue of arguably Australia’s most famous racecourse ‘Phar Lap’ which was donated to the club in 1988.

On Melbourne Cup day 2006 (7th November), Flemington racecourse was added to the Australian National Heritage List.

Apart from the Melbourne Cup, Flemington hosts the following Group races at its racecourse throughout the year:

GroupRace NameDistanceDate
1Ascot Vale Stakes1200November
1Australian Cup2000March
1Australian Guineas/Cadbury Guineas1600February
1Cantala Stakes/Emirates Stakes1600November
1Myer Classic1600November
1Lightning Stakes1000February
1LKS Mackinnon Stakes2000November
1Melbourne Cup3200November
1Newmarket Handicap1200March
2Salinger Stakes1200November
1The Age Classic1200November
1Turnbull Stakes2000October
1Victoria Derby2500November
1VRC Oaks/Crown Oaks2500November
2A.V Kewney Stakes1600March
2Blamey Stakes1600March
2Craiglee Stakes1600September
2Edward Manifold Stakes1600October
2Gilgai Stakes1200October
2Hilton International Stakes2000November
2Rose Of Kingston Stakes1400October
2VRC Sires’ Produce Stakes1400March
2Wakeful Stakes2000November
3Aurie’s Star Handicap1200August
3Thoroughbred Breeders Stakes1200March
3Bobby Lewis Quality1200September
3Chatham Stakes/Yallambee Stud Stakes1400November
3Frances Tressady Stakes1400March
3Hotham Handicap/Saab Quality2500November
3Maribyrnong Plate1000November
3Matron Stakes1600March
3Let’s Elope Stakes1400September
3Rory’s Jester Stakes1200November
3Standish Handicap1200January
3C S Hayes Stakes1400February
3The Vanity[7]1400February
3VRC Carbine Club Stakes1600November
3VRC Queen Elizabeth Stakes2500November


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