Remember when ... in 2010

Americain wins 150th Melbourne Cup.

The 150th Melbourne Cup was all-consuming in what was a very special year for the VRC. Eight international runners complemented the local contingent and it would be the French-trained, Australian owned runner Americain who would duly salute. Owned by prominent Melburnians, Gerry and Val Ryan and Geoff and Colleen Bamford, Americain proved a popular victory, having secured the Geelong Cup the start previous. When asked at the Breakfast with the Stars function one week prior to the Cup if he thought you could buy a Cup winner, owner Gerry Ryan said, ‘I think you can buy a horse that will get you into the race but I don’t think you can go out and buy the winner. It is the hardest race to win in the world.’

The 150th Melbourne Cup celebrations featured many past Melbourne Cup-winning jockeys. These included legend jockeys Roy Higgins, John Letts, John Marshall, Les Coles, Pat Hyland, Midge Didham, Darren Beadman and Chris Munce; jockeys from Ireland (Mick Kinane) and Singapore (Bruce Marsh), as well as Harry McCloud who won the 1942 Melbourne Cup aboard Colonus.

As part of the 150th Melbourne Cup celebrations, the trophy was restored to its original shape and size, reflective of its art deco design. From 1919 to 1930 the trophy had possessed a fuller-shaped bowl, however in depression conditions and with a new sales tax on gold, the VRC of the time decided to reduce the size of the Cup trophy. Later it reduced the gold content to 9 carats. It is now 18 carat gold and valued
at $220,000.