What is the Melbourne Cup really about?

It’s that time of the year again! Where florals are back in fashion, dress shopping becomes overwhelming, and everyone is trying to find the most unique and most extravagant headpiece….did I mention this was all to watch a bunch of horses race?

That’s right, another excuse to dress up and to flaunt materialistic things that you’ll probably only wear once, both for men and women that is.

It’s all about spring fashion, the designer dress the slickest suits, but we’re forgetting one thing…the horses…the main event!!

I think a lot of us that get so caught up in the Melbourne Cup brunches, high teas and the investments that we seem to forget what these horses go through, or how much money is actually being made in this industry that could be used properly on sectors Australia is really struggling in.

I promise you’re going to leave my blog with a bit more knowledge about the Melbourne Cup and the horse racing industry than you had 5 minutes ago.

The best way to share with you these awesome facts is with lists, cause we all know how much I love lists!

  1. Horses suffer from mental instability too- racing horses spend most of their days in a stable near a horse track. This means they develop unhealthy behaviours such as fence biting and self-mutilation (also known as self-harm).
  2. During training and competitions such as the Melbourne Cup, or the Caulfield Cup (most popular), horses develop stomach ulcers due to their strict high concentrated grains diet. They also suffer from muscle pains, torn ligaments, dislocation and fractures…yes they are just like humans, they hurt too when they do too much physical exercise.
  3. If you’ve ever watched a horse race there’s always at the very least one horse that falls in each race, and they are pretty fatal falls. However, they never shows what happens because they cover the scene with a screen shield. What happens most of the time is the horse breaks a leg or shoulder and their bone actually explodes, making it impossible to repair.
  4. Injured racehorses don’t get to just live in a retirement village and relax the rest of their lives with their superannuation money like humans do, no no, they get slaughtered.
  5. Horses are made to race when they are two years old…I don’t know about you guys but when you’ve only been in the world for two years you’re not exactly ready to take on intense physical training. Horses are the same, they are not skeletally mature until they are five years old. Which makes sense why so many horses suffer major injuries in their bodies and ligaments, making the average career of a racehorse being less than 3 years, leading to them being put down at an early age.
  6. According to the Humane Society International Australia ” Jumps racing was responsible for the death of 15 horses on the track in 2008,  another 13 in 2009, 5 more in 2010, 11 in 2011, 6 in 2012, 4 in 2013, 5 in 2014, and 5 in 2015. More than 60 jumps horses have died in South Australia and Victoria in the past eight years.”
  7. Last year’s Melbourne Cup season calculated an estimated $31 million dollars spent by racegoers on fashion, $28.4 million on accommodation an $20.9 million on hospitality…yup you got that right, after the horse’s health being affected, money is the main reason why this sport even exists…MONAAYYY
  8. The horse racing industry is worth $8 BILLION DOLLARS
  9. In 2014 $26 Billion dollars was invested in race betting
  10. “This year more than $300 million will be bet on the Melbourne Cup alone as once-a-year punters join the regular gamblers for their annual fling.”–The Daily Telegraph, 2014


You get the point, that’s a lot of stats and figures! You clearly see the whole Melbourne Cup festivities is a waste of time, it focuses on anything but the horses. It’s about drinking, looking good in over-priced clothes, and selling an arm and a leg while you’re at it.

Sometimes we just do things because everyone else is, we follow the crowd, but there is no shame in actually sharing your own opinion, and doing your own thing. Next time you get excited about the Melbourne Cup season, ask yourself is it really worth it to, a) be spending excessive money supporting the horse racing industry and b) put a horse’s health in danger for our own selfish reasons.

Let me know what you think in the comment section below, I’d love to hear your opinions!


For now, Keep Smiling as always 🙂



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