Melbourne Cup Horse

Who is the best Melbourne Cup Horse of All Time?

Melbourne Cup Horse

Melbourne Cup Horse

Imma let you finish, but “Phar Lap” was the best Melbourne Cup horse of all time! (Source)

It is probably something that Kanye West and a lot of other horse racing enthusiasts would say. It’s a debate that you will commonly find in Australian bars and down by trackside at the races during the Spring Racing Carnival. The Melbourne Cup is entrenched in Australian history and culture. And the winners of the cup etch their name into the Australian history books. But with champions coming in different eras under different conditions, trainers and rules, is it fair to place one horse as the champion above all? And if so, who can truly be regarded as the ‘Champion of champions’?

Melbourne Cup Horse


In an article published by Conrad Walters, he has compiled data on the best Melbourne Cup horses of all time. And while some of the data will stimulate debates and discussion, he had trawled half a century’s worth of data to best provide the best context for horses that raced and competed by assessing a spreadsheet of disparate data.

In 2014, Sportsbet released a video discussing the traits to look out for when picking a winner.

If one was to decide on the winner for the ultimate race of Melbourne Cup champions, then this video would offer punters the ideal tips to favour their Melbourne Cup odds of winning.

Below is our top summary of some of the greatest racehorses that graced the Melbourne Cup.

Phar Lap

Phar Lap was considered the wonder horse of Melbourne during the 1930’s. The famous race horse won a total of 37 races from 51 starts over a four year period. While it is an incredible winning record that was achieved during a crucial time in Australia, Conrad Walters argues that the horse would struggle to compete against the Thoroughbreds that came after him, citing the numbers and repeat wins for a horse.

Think Big

Famous for back-to-back victories in the Melbourne Cup in 1974 and 1975, Think Big was also trained by Bart Cummings. With initial starts as a 2 year old, he would race to his first wins. However it was as a three year old at the Brisbane Igloo Cup where Think Big would begin to impress.

Peter Pan

Peter Pan was iconic for his racing performances and his unique colour and flamboyance on the track. Chestnut in colour with a blonde mane and tail, the horse would win several races over the course of its career with wins in the Melbourne Cup in 1932 and 1934. The horse raced in the ‘Great Depression’ era with Phar Lap, another great racehorse of the time. Another strong trait with this horse was the comeback following a near-fatal virus that led the horse to miss the 1933 Melbourne Cup.

Kingston Rule

Kingston Rule was born and raised in the US, but competed in Australia and took out the 1990 Melbourne Cup against a quality field of contenders. Trained by legendary trainer Bart Cummings and ridden by Darren Beadman, vthe horse won in a record time of 3 minutes and 16 seconds, a time that still stands today.

You can see footage of his winning performance in the video below.

Makybe Diva

Makybe Diva was the first race horse to win the Melbourne cup on three occasions. Many Australians feel like her performances got them into horse racing and even made them feel emotional. The final commentator summed it up best by saying ‘A champion becomes a legend!’ Watch the epic performances in the video below.

Sometimes it turns out to be a he said she said kind of scenario. It shouldn’t be, but sometimes it is! Do you agree with the list of racehorses that we have provided? Whether or not you agree, we would love to hear your thoughts.