Hamilton Cup

THE Hamilton Cup is run to coincide with the Melbourne Cup carnival and is scheduled for the end of October every year.

It’s not one of the most well-known races on the thoroughbred calendar, but a big crowd turns out to the country Victoria venue and a full field of stayers is always on hand.

The $60,000 feature over 2200m competes with the Sale Cup, which is run on the same day and is worth $200,000, but the Hamilton Cup provides the second-rated stayers a chance to build their form heading into a potential spring carnival campaign.

Punters love betting on the Hamilton Cup meeting as it comes a day after the Cox Plate at Moonee Valley and the full fields provide plenty punters with great viewing and betting pleasure across the eight-race card.

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2017 Hamilton Cup betting

Recent Hamilton Cup winners

Leica Day wins 2016 Hamilton Cup
The Hamilton Cup is one of the great days in country racing. This picture is from the beginning of the 2016 race, which was taken out by Leica Day with John Allen steering. (Bronwyn Nicholson/Racing Photos)

2016: Darren Weir continued his recent dominance of the Hamilton Cup with Leica Day winning in 2016. The five-year-old was heavily-backed at $2.80 and it did the job easily, winning by 2.25 lengths over Viva Espana and Sun Disk. The win gave Weir consecutive wins in the Hamilton Cup after Rainbow Storm won in 2015 and three wins from the past four years. The 2016 edition was run on a heavy track and the race featured a protest between the second and third placegetters.

2015: Rainbow Storm was the first of back-to-back Hamilton Cup wins for trainer Darren Weir and it was the most impressive. The imported son of Desert King had plenty of ability heading into the race and punters backed it late into $4.50. The five-year-old destroyed the field by four lengths in a dominant display of racing and it was one of the more impressive Hamilton Cup winners in the history of the race. The field wasn’t bless with much talent, and the winner was clearly the best thoroughbred.

2014: Jockey Nikita Beriman scored one of her more memorable wins in 2014 when guiding Bunchloch to victory in a tight tussle. The five-year-old by West Quest scored by a long neck over Sudden Moment to return odds of $9.10. They finished four lengths ahead of race favourite Count Encosta, which had the best form leading into the race. The win gave popular trainers Terry and Karina one O’Sullivan of their career highlights, which is what country racing is all about in Australia.

2013: Darren Weir scored the first of his three Hamilton Cup wins Hurdy Gurdy Man in 2013. The six-year-old by Street Cry had its fair share of supporters going into the race and it got backed into $2.50 come start time. The always-popular runner had to hold off despised outsider Bredlign ($11.30 to place) in the finish, but it was able to find enough in the reserve tank. The field of 11 had to cope with the rain-affected track conditions which caught a few spring thoroughbreds off guard.

2012: The 2012 Cup went to New Zealand with the Kevin Meyers-trained Crocodile Canyon taking the spoils. The eight-year-old settled off a hot speed up front and it was saved for one last shot at them. The $18 chance defeated race favourite Commanding Time in the shadows of the post, which frustrated punters. The win was the seventh from 40 starts for the Kiwi runner and it took its prize money to over $100,000.

Hamilton Cup winners list

2000 – Fuss
2001 – Samosiera
2002 – Sly Rambler
2003 – Le Destina
2004 – Badgers Wood
2005 – Palio Archway
2006 – Forest Knight
2007 – Baughurst
2008 – Brough Superior
2009 – Larry’s Never Late
2010 – Lady Avacan
2011 – Risk It All
2012 – Finiguerra
2012 – Crocodile Canyon
2013 – Hurdy Gurdy Man
2014 – Bunchlock
2015 – Rainbow Storm
2016 – Leica Day

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