“I rode him yesterday and he tried to kill me so I knew he was ready,” she laughed afterwards.
“He thinks he is a comedian but he is the kind of horse who will give everything.”
Attractable is owned by private breeding company Domeland Racing which bought him as a yearling in 2020 for $300,000.
Domeland managing director King Chang was delighted to win the $3 million The Big Dance
“I think it is a very special race because it really brings NSW racing together and that is what counts,” he said.
Former Australian cricket great Mark Waugh was watching from the owners’ enclosure with trainer wife Kim as their horse Camaguey roared home from last place to finish fifth.
“He probably ran the fastest sections of the day,” Waught said afterwards. Despite the loss he was thrilled with the concept of The Big Dance.
“I think it’s a great concept because it is huge prize money and it gives everybody a chance,” he said. “It doesn’t matter if you have a $500,000 horse or a $5000 horse you can come from the country and have a go.”
The race was watched by 20,000 race fans and 300 VIPs in the ballroom including Seven presenters Sam Armytage and Mel McLaughlin.
Armytage said she was delighted to see a sweep in The Daily Telegraph for The Big Dance in Sydney as well as the Melbourne Cup because it brought the race day home to NSW.
“It is back to what this day is all about, country horses coming to the big smoke to run against the best of the best,” she said.
Racing NSW chairman Russell Balding said the race was not designed to be in competition with the Melbourne Cup but to complement it.
“We are here celebrating Australian horses competing for glory on the first Tuesday in November,” he said.
Also in the ballroom at Royal Randwick were health minister Ryan Park and Roads Minister John Graham and shadow health spokesman Matt kean, former racing minister Kevin Anderson and Nationals member Dave Lazell.
Punters dressed to impress
Sydney punters, dolled up in bright colours and heels as they came together for The Big Dance.
Looking chic in a red jumpsuit, Channel 7 sports presenter Mel McLaughlin said that the second Big Dance provided a turnout even bigger and better than last year.
Speaking to The Daily Telegraph, she said that it was a beautiful day, adding it’s “a bit chilled in a really cool way”.
She seemed to enjoy the chance to attend a more local race, with the day “jam-packed” between The Big Dance and the iconic Melbourne Cup.
“It’s great to have a big occasion on the same day so we can see some big racing ourselves in Sydney and go to a big race day,” she said.
The Daily Telegraph spoke to one happy punter from the Hunter Valley just after the biggest race of the day.
Shanae Howard, 22, tipped the winner of The Big Dance, so it’s no surprise that she had a fantastic day at the races.
“It’s really good, having lots of fun. There’s lots of different bar areas, lots of photo opportunities, it’s great,” she said.
The day was about more than just the race, with groups of friends taking the opportunity to catch up in style.
One group of colleagues attended today’s event to celebrate nine years in business.
Ellie Borgelt, 47, opened her Bondi Junction dental practice The Dental Spa just under a decade ago.
She used the day to celebrate her achievement with colleague Reagan Simmonds and former colleague Abi Thomas.
Simmonds, originally from Yorkshire, has lived in Sydney for a year now and loves a good race.
“I love the races. It’s always such a good day. I’ll love a drink, but the sunshine when the races are on, it’s just an all round good feeling,” she said.
Sydney’s big celebration for sport of kings
Trackside or harbourside, by midday on Tuesday— Sydney was going off for the Melbourne Cup.
Justin Hemmes was hosting a swish celebration at his swanky poolside bar at the Ivy as people packed the city’s pubs.
The Daily Telegraph’s Confidential got out of an Uber by King Street Wharf to leg it up to the Australian fine dining restaurant Woodcut in Barangaroo. Walking was faster.
Meanwhile, Confidential’s photographer drove over the Harbour Bridge and back because it was faster to drive against the grain of bumper to bumper festive traffic.
Sunrise’s Natalie Barr is once again hosting a showcase lunch at the Crown.
The $295 lunch that includes a glass of champagne on arrival and a four-course menu curated by chef Ross Lusted, was sold out.
“I’m wearing a Rachel Gilbert top and skirt,” Barr said. “It was full length but our stylist got it cut off so it also works on-air.”
“It’s good to wear a pop of colour for Melbourne Cup. I think that’s what it’s all about. I just do what I’m told,” she said.
Barr wasn’t too certain on how to hedge her bets but has faith in famed trainer Chris Wallace.
“Chris Waller is the best trainer around. He said Soulcombe and I think that could be it for me.
The crowd at the Crown lunch is an older group, keen to make the most of the sunshine by the water without fighting the blaring music piping up from further down the wharf.
“Lots of companies here, groups of colleagues, a mum’s group, lots of people who haven’t been out for a while,” Barr told Confidential.
“It’s a day where everyone gets to dress up, have fun, go out. It’s a good chance to get up, and get out. Put a frock on, put a fascinator on and enjoy the Sydney weather.”
Barr is seated with her colleague Seven presenter Kylie Gillies and friend clinical nutritionist Sarah DiLorenzo.
After lunch, guests will head upstairs to Crown Sydney’s rooftop bar, Cirq, to continue the party.
Earlier: Big Dance, big bets and even bigger party
As the nation prepares to stop for the 163rd running of the Melbourne Cup 20,000 racegoers are descending on Royal Randwick to kick up their heels for The Big Dance.
The second running of The Big Dance brings 20 country cup winners from regional NSW to race for a $3 million prize in front of a giant, cheering crowd.
Trainer Bjorn Baker has four runners in The Big Dance including favourite Iknowstar with jockey Tyler Schiller on board. Favourite for the Melbourne Cup is French champion Vauban with Ryan Moore in the saddle.
The day will see a betting bonanza for the bookies with the TAB expected to turn over $500 million from 50 million bets over the week with a peak of 40,000 bets a minute today.
It will be the second biggest race day at Royal Randwick after The Everest, which attracted a crowd of more than 44,000 people but Premier Chris Minns and his Racing Minister David Harris will not be among the crowd.
Harris has snubbed the race showcasing horses from country NSW, because of a “long-standing commitment” in one of his other portfolio areas – Aboriginal Affairs.
“Minister Harris attended Everest Day at Randwick racecourse, the most important day on the NSW Racing calendar, but has a long-standing commitment to visit the Northern Rivers to speak with local Aboriginal communities,” a spokeswoman said.
Minns isn’t going either, but – speaking on 2GB – he encouraged Sydneysiders to “get down to Randwick, we’ve got the best races in the country”.
A number of senior Ministers are attending The Big Dance on cup day, including Tourism Minister John Graham.
Minns tipped King of the Castle for The Big Dance, and Future History for the Melbourne Cup – but he did not sound confident about either pick.
https://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/nsw/the-big-dance-big-bets-and-even-bigger-party-for-sydney-racegoers/news-story/88f5fe0f347f86a4efbeef0fff253d04 The Big Dance: big bets and even bigger party for Sydney racegoers