Sunday, November 01, 2009

Melbourne Cup sweeps

Tomorrow in Australia we have a horse race which is reputed to stop the nation. It's pretty much true. While the Melbourne Cup is running, people all over the country are glued to their televisions or radios. Many businesses stop work for those few minutes of the race.
And there are parties galore -- and hats!!! Lots of hats. I still have to find mine.
When I was a child, my grandparents always used to visit us in November, and I remember my grandfather running sweeps. We children would put in sixpence from our pocket money and the thrill of having a winning horse was huge.
This year I'm in a cyber sweep with writer mates organized by the fab Bronwyn Jameson, and I've drawn Newport and Alcopop. I had no idea until last night that there's been a lot of excitement about Alcopop. His trainer, Jake Stephens (32, and pictured here) is a South Australian cattleman and restaurateur (how appropriate), and he trains his horses on the beach apparently. I've only been quickly gathering info, but it seems he missed out on entering Alcopop in the Caufield Cup (the precursor to Melbourne), because he forgot to pay one of the registration fees, but the horse powered home in another race that earned him a place in the big race, and now he's one of the favourites. In another unconventional touch, Bron tells me he's using an unknown jockey rather than one of the big city names.
I haven't found out anything about Newport yet, but I mustn't neglect him. If you have a horse in a sweep, or if you're placing bets, good luck!!! And don't forget to find a hat!


2paw said...

Good luck with the sweep!! My mum is off to a 'do' with a hat tomorrow. Me? Not so much. I have been to the Cup here once and I wasn't highly entertained, so I'll watch the fashions on the news and listen to the race on the ABC!!

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