With the Melbourne Cup on the horizon, we thought to put our research skills to the test.
Everyone knows about the Cups Double, that rare occurrence when a racehorse wins the Caulfield Cup followed by the Melbourne Cup.
It is exceedingly rare, having happened only 11 times in the history of the two races.
That fact was easy to discover.
With it virtually impossible to look at current racing news without encountering the name of Winx, our curiosity took hold. Knowing that she won the Group 1 Turnbull Stakes last year and is looking to repeat in 2018, we went searching for the horses that have produced a Turnbull Stakes – Melbourne Cups double since the first running of the Turnbull in 1865.
We very much doubt that Winx will even take part in the Melbourne Cup, but we were a little surprised to learn that over the history of the Turnbull Stakes and the Melbourne Cup, only five Thoroughbreds have won both races in the same year.
This is not the sort of information you will find on any old horseracing site.
Here it is, then.
The most recent horse to fill a Melbourne Cup – Turnbull Stakes double was Green Moon in 2012. The races were exactly one month apart that year, but Green Moon was not idling about in the interim. He ran in the Cox Plate, finishing seventh.
Next chronologically is Makybe Diva in 2005. Finding her is really no surprise. The Diva came within a half head of winning the Caulfield Cup behind the favourite, Elvstroem.
The year of 1991 belonged to Let’s Elope. She won the Caulfield Cup that year as well and she won down to 1400 metres, so this was one versatile mare.
Rising Fast did the Turnbull Stakes – Melbourne Cup double in 1954. He also won the Caulfield Cup and the Cox Plate that year, a feat that has never been matched.
Finally, we had to go all the way back to 1888 to find the name of Mentor.
Information on Mentor is practically nonexistent, so perhaps those research skills of ours we were touting earlier are not so extensive after all.