Australians have punted almost $90 million with the TAB on the Melbourne Cup, won by Irish invader Rekindling.
Although the outlay was down on the $94.5 million wagered on last year’s race, the other races on Tuesday’s card garnered more support than 12 months ago
“On our preliminary figures total TAB turnover on the Melbourne Cup was down 5.7 per cent, however turnover on the other nine races at Flemington was up 4.1 per cent,” said Tabcorp’s chief operating officer (wagering and media) Adam Rytenski.
Astute punters cashed in late on Rekindling with the TAB detailing some lucrative late plunges on the Joseph O’Brien-trained four-year-old.
Although Marmelo and last year’s winner Almandin as $7 joint favourites were heavily backed, the TAB took five four-figure bets on Rekindling.
The biggest collect was $48,000 for a $3000 investment at $16.
Rekindling opened at $51 on the TAB fixed odds market and was as high as $18 before starting at $15.
The largest bet made with the TAB on race day at Flemington was $30,000 on Marmelo at $7.50, who placed ninth.
Racing and sports betting agency UBET said Rekindling accounted for 7 per cent of the fixed-price win book.
Rekindling shortened from $17 to $15 in the final five minutes before the jump. The biggest bet taken on race day was $4000 at $15.
A punter in Melbourne turned a $10 investment into $1 million collect when after tipping Rekindling in the TAB’s Melbourne Cup millionaire promotion.
“I was just numb. It’s a surreal feeling and I’m still in shock. I chose Rekindling because I liked its form overseas and its draw, but I never could have imagined this,” the man said.
The TAB opened a fixed odds market for the 2018 Melbourne Cup on Tuesday with Rekindling and Johannes Vermeer the $21 joint favourites.