How much prize money does the winner take home?

The winner of the 2021 Melbourne Cup will receive $4.4million from an overall prize fund of $8million with the race that stops a nation confirming its reputation as not only one of the richest horse races in the sport, but the richest handicap race anywhere in the world.

The top 12 finishers can all expect to take home some sort of prize money but the rest of the 24 horse fill leave Flemington empty handed. Don’t be surprised therefore to see those in the middle of the pack still fighting hard right to the finish line as the difference between 12th and 13th place can mean an awful lot to an owner, trainer, jockey and the whole team.

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The $4.4 million that the winner receives is supplemented by $250,000 worth of trophies. These include the 18-carat gold Loving Cup itself for the owner, the Harry White whip and trophy for the winning jockey, a trophy for the trainer and the Tommy Woodcock trophy for the strapper – named after Phar Lap’s attendant. The breeder will also get a trophy to help them celebrate the success.

A new Loving Cup is handcrafted every year and interestingly there are two made – just in case there is a dead heat and two winners are named.

The second-place horse’s team will receive $1.1million with third place winning $550k and fourth walking away with $350k and fifth with $230k. From there the remaining horses from the top 12 finishers will each get $160k.

The overall prize money for a horse is split three ways. The connections of the horse get the majority with 85% of the total prize money going to them. 5% goes to the jockey and 10% to the trainer.

That means that the connections of the winning horse in the 2021 Melbourne Cup will enjoy $3.74 million with the jockey earning themselves $220k and the trainer receiving $440k.

PlacePrize MoneyConnectionsJockeyTrainer

Currently, there are only three horse races around the world that offer more prize money than the Melbourne Cup.

The Saudi World Cup offers over $26.5million in prize money with the Dubai World Cup offering $15.9million and The Everest in Sydney having a prize fund of $15million.

With The Everest still classed as a Special Conditions race and not a Group 1 race, the Melbourne Cup is the richest Group 1 race in Australia.

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