‘He’s a fighter’: Melbourne Cup stays in Australia with Vow And Declare’s ride to glory
The Melbourne Cup is staying in Australia after veteran jockey Craig Williams fought off all comers with a stunning ride to guide Flemington gelding Vow And Declare to victory.
The four-year-old gelding looked beaten 100m from home as UK stayer Master Of Reality stormed home.
But the Caulfield Cup runner-up would not be denied a second time.
He lifted under Williams’ urgings to nab a famous victory in the final strides.
It’s the AUSSIE!!! Vow And Declare has won the #MelbourneCup.
What a moment, what a race… pic.twitter.com/DvAoinx0cp
— Racing.com (@Racing) November 5, 2019
Vow And Declare, trained at Flemington by Danny O’Brien, is the first Australian-trained horse to win the $8 million race since 2016.
The horse’s part-owner principal Kort Goodman tells Ross Greenwood he’s a “fighter”.
“We were a little bit concerned he might be a jumper… we just went along for a ride.”
Click PLAY below to hear the full interview
There was drama to the post-script, with stewards upholding a protest of 4th versus 2nd, which demoted Master Of Reality to fourth, gifting Prince Of Arran second-place.
BREAKING | #MelbourneCup protest (4th v 2nd) upheld.
1ST – Vow And Declare
2ND – Prince Of Arran
3RD – Il Paradiso
4TH – Master Of Reality
— 3AW Melbourne (@3AW693) November 5, 2019
After the race, experts were quick to praise the ride of Williams in his long-awaited first Melbourne Cup victory.
“That was one of the best Cup rides I’ve ever seen,” tweeted Glen Boss, who won three consecutive cups aboard Makybe Diva.
Craig Willams take a bow . That was one of the best Cup rides I’ve ever seen 🏆⭐️
— GLEN BOSS (@boss_glen) November 5, 2019
(Photo by Robert Cianflone/Getty Images)