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The Melbourne Cup thru 80s to 93

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djebel View Drop Down
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    Posted: 15 Nov 2018 at 12:21pm
There seems to be a popular thought that prior to Vintage Crop winning the Cup in 1993 the Melbourne Cup was struggling.

Was this a fact or is it popular fiction ?

I mean I do not recall it ever lacking for hype and anticipation. 


STRIKE WHILST THE IRON IS HOT

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djebel View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote djebel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 Nov 2018 at 12:39pm


STRIKE WHILST THE IRON IS HOT

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djebel View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote djebel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 Nov 2018 at 5:47pm
The race itself was clearly holding up. Looking at those fields they were not terrible.

So what was going wrong at the time ?


STRIKE WHILST THE IRON IS HOT

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The richest man is not he who has the most, but he who needs the least.

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Tontonan View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tontonan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Nov 2018 at 2:37pm
It is a question of what you mean by struggling.  

In economic terms the Melbourne Cup was in recession in the 1980's.

In the 1980's there were no Cup day attendances over 100,000.  
In fact, since the war, despite rapid economic growth and steady population growth there had only been 6 Cup days that pulled 100,000 (45 years). 

Prior to the war there had been 11 crowds of over 100,000 since 1910 (30 years)

Remember Cup day pulled its first 100,000 crowd in 1880 ! 

Wars and depressions made only dings in the enthusiasm to attend the Cup but in the 'Greed is Good' 1980's the Cup appeared to be losing its crowd pulling power.  

It was primarily a domestic event.  Admittedly the likes of Sangster and Maktoum and Lloyd Williams had begun importing stayers from the North for local trainers to prepare for the Cup with some success but the race was still largely a domestic affair that relied on interstate and trans Tasman visitors to boost the crowds.  

It is hard to ignore the rapid rise in the carnival crowds post Vintage Crop.  Cup week attendances doubled to more than 400,000 in 13 years with an ever increasing number of international visitors among the crowd.  



In comparitive economic terms the Melbourne Cup was running out of puff in the 1980's and the international program was like a shot of elephant juice. 


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Jamal View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Jamal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Nov 2018 at 2:50pm
And apparently some of the winners of the Cup in the 1980s such as Black Knight and What A Nuisance for example were deemed as "weak" or "average" winners.
It's always good when a WA horse does well in the Eastern States or abroad.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote djebel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Nov 2018 at 9:31pm
That is exactly what I was looking for Totonan, thankyou.

Jamal, most of the 80s Cups would have good spreads of weight between top and bottom. Winners may not have been top class but they were still good fields.



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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tontonan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Nov 2018 at 10:51pm
These are the (38)years that the Melbourne Cup day attendance was greater than 100,000 :

1880,1881, 1883, 1888, (1910),1919,1920, 1922, 1924, 1925, 1926, 1927, 1928, 1935, 1936, 1937, 1948, 1949, 1960, 1972, 1973, 1980, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015.

Note :  In 1906 the VRC stopped counting the people on the flat (approximately 40,000 +).  Admittance to the flat was free.  Attendance figures between 1906 and the end of WW1 were somewhat unreliable.  In 1910 there were 58512 ticketed and an estimated 50,000 on the flat.  There may have been other years in this period that topped 100,000. 
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