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Few sporting events draw as much attention in Australia as the Melbourne Cup. We will take a look at the favourites for this year’s race and discuss the best Melbourne Cup betting offers and Melbourne Cup free bets for 2018.
Betting on the Melbourne Cup
The Melbourne Cup is historically known as “the race that stops a nation” and is the biggest betting event of the year in Australia. The 2018 race will be held at its traditional home, Flemington Race Course, on November 6th at 3 pm AEST.
Every year bookmakers across Australia entice punters, both serious and casual, with a tempting list of Melbourne Cup betting offers, Melbourne Cup bonus bets and the most popular of them all, Melbourne Cup free bets…
Melbourne Cup Betting Trends To Avoid
The Melbourne Cup is always run at a brutal gallop from the stalls, with 24 runners trying for their lives and the winner always needs to be a tough stayer to see out the sapping two-mile trip.
Having that in mind it is well worth sticking with horses who have proven stamina (preferably with winning form at 2m or beyond), as those untested beyond middle distances often fade out of contention at the business end of the great race.
Top Australian jockeys have dominated the event over time, with only Ryan Moore (on Protectionist in 2014) and Gerard Mosse (on Americain in 2010) bucking that trend, so perhaps avoid international jockeys and stick with the Australian riders with crucial track experience of riding at Flemington.
Read our Melbourne Cup Betting Guide for more tips.
History Of The Melbourne Cup
Since its first running in 1861, the race has captured the imagination of the Australian public. It is the equivalent of the Grand National in the UK, where almost everyone has a bet on it and watches it on National television.
The first winner of the great race was Archer (followed up in 1862), and since then big names like Bart Cummings, Gai Waterhouse, Kerrin McEvoy have become household names across the world as a result of their success in this prestigious prize.
In 2001 Sheila Laxon became the first female trainer to win the Cup. Jockey Michelle Payne brought the house down when winning on board Prince of Penzance in 2015, to prove that all the old male stereotypes were a thing of the past, and this is now one of the most cosmopolitan international racing events in the whole of the racing calendar
Popular Melbourne Cup Betting Markets
As the Cup is always a ferociously competitive event, it is well worth shopping around to make sure you get the best price on offer, and also avail yourself of those bookmakers offering enhanced place terms.
If you are serious about taking advantage of your Melbourne Cup free bets and Melbourne Cup bonus bets for 2018, you need to understand how racing betting markets work.
The traditional place terms in a 24 runner handicap are 1/4 the odds 1st,2nd,3rd,4th. But these are very much in the bookmakers’ favour (mathematically speaking) and some of the more go-ahead bookmakers may well offer an extra place or two to entice turnover.
Our advice is to put together a package of hoses to bet Each-Way (To win or place) with these bookmakers, to give yourself the best chance of making a profit.
There are also sure to be lots of match bets and specials as race-day approaches, where it is always worth sticking with the proven stayers against the hyped up big-name horse and stables.
Melbourne Cup Betting Offers & Bookmakers
|Bookmaker name||Sign up bonus||Our rating||Bet on Melbourne Cup|
|bet365||Sports Offer (T&Cs Apply)||5/5|
|Sportsbet||Up to $150 on first bet||4/5|
|Ladbrokes||100% up to $500||5/5|
There will be a wide range of bookmakers offering Melbourne Cup bonus bets and Melbourne Cup bonus offers this November. But which bookmakers are our top three for betting in 2018?
Bet on Melbourne Cup with Bet365
The biggest bookmaker in the world is also one of the most popular bookmakers in Australia, with a great list of betting markets for all Australian sports, leagues and tournaments including the Melbourne Cup and the entire Spring Racing Festival. Bet365 also offers live streaming with a deep menu of sports broadcasts from around the world each day. Keep an eye out for Melbourne Cup betting offers that may appear closer to the race.
Bet on Melbourne Cup with Sportsbet
A review of the best bookmakers for the greatest race in Australian racing would be incomplete without mentioning this giant of the Australian betting scene. Sportsbet will be offering a diverse range of markets across the Spring Racing Festival including the running of Australia’s great race. If you love horse racing, Sportsbet is a bookmaker to add to your portfolio of accounts.
Bet on Melbourne Cup with Ladbrokes
This giant of the UK betting industry is now one of the most popular bookmakers in Australia. While you can bet on all major sporting events within Australia and elsewhere, Ladbrokes offers markets on racing events across the planet including the climax of the Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival this November. Though, we’re unlikely to see their Melbourne Cup betting offers until closer to the race.
Melbourne Cup Favourites
Here we list the current Melbourne Cup favourites running in 2018:
Aidan O’Brien’s classy performer has won 3 of his 13 career starts and has swept to favouritism for this race. He is clearly on the up but the Australian handicapper placed him up 2.5kg on the back of a recent victory and he might now find others are better treated. Yucatan will certainly attract a lot of attention and may be available in Melbourne Cup betting offers at enhanced odds.
Ian Williams has enjoyed a terrific summer in the UK, and this progressive performer created a deep impression when winning the valuable Chester Cup over 2m2f in May. He looks very leniently treated if able to translate that ability to Australia on his first ever visit overseas. Magic Circle is a runner to consider when placing your Melbourne Cup free bets in 2018.
James Cummings in-form contender is sure to be very popular with local punters after impressively winning his last four starts this season. But he is now running off a career-high mark as a result and looks vulnerable. If you want to take advantage of Melbourne Cup bonus bets, Avilius is well worth your consideration.
Godolphin’s progressive stayer has reportedly suffered a minor injury scare. But trainer Charlie Appleby still expects him to be ready for the big day, and he has already enjoyed a terrific summer in victory at Goodwood. Those considering a runner for their Melbourne Cup betting offers should certainly take a look at Cross Counter.
Owned by pro-gambler Tony Bloom, this rapidly improving handicapper is expected to go very close if getting into the race. He has no issues at all with the distance or ground (strong traveller on the bridle with a strong turn of foot for a stayer). Withhold is a value proposition, especially when taking advantage of Melbourne Cup bonus bets.
Other Contenders To Consider
Joseph O’Brien is making a fantastic impact in his early years as a trainer. This 3-year old has a similar profile to his 2017 Cup winner Rekindling. Ante-post punters have been quick to latch onto him. While not among the leading favourites, we recommend taking advantage of your Melbourne Cup free bets and wagering on Latrobe.
Chris Waller’s filly comes here on the upgrade, with a career-best effort at Flemington last time out over 1m2f. But this step up in distance is a real leap into the unknown. Youngstar may struggle here and is not worth Melbourne Cup betting offers, outside of enhanced odds.
Hughie Morrison’s stable star finished a fair 9th behind Rekindling in last year’s race. He has since proved himself a top class performer by winning in the UK and France in a busy campaign. If you have a number of Melbourne Cup bonus bets, we recommend using one on Marmelo.
David Payne’s 4-year old has an exposed look after running 21 times already. But he took advantage of a drop in class to win a Group 2 last time out. As he is not among the top favourites, you won’t find enhanced odds Melbourne Cup betting offers for Ace High.
This useful stayer has targeted this prize all season, with one really creditable run over an inadequate trip quite eye-catching. If you have some Melbourne Cup free bets, using one on Tosen Basil could be profitable.