Horse Racing (General)

Horse racing in Australia is the third largest spectator sport in the country. Dedicated and casual fans alike demonstrate a knowledge and familiarity with the sport that borders on the obsessive.

No other country on the planet has a national holiday that is centered around the running of a mid-week horse race that is the focus of the attention of the general public for weeks beforehand and long after. Success in the Melbourne Cup is a clear path to fame and fortune.

It is easy to see why racing enjoys such lofty status in Australia. Early immigrants from a tiny island in the northern hemisphere were doubtlessly daunted by the challenges of settling an island in the southern hemisphere that was clearly immense beyond their comprehension. Horses made settling this island-continent possible. In so doing, they became a source of pride far beyond their humble origins of transportation and labour. They became valued companions in a sparsely populated region of the world, and respect and admiration for these valued companions inevitably led to competitions to determine superiority.

Here is where you can learn more of the history of the Sport of Kings and how it evolved and prospered in a land where roads and railroads were years away from becoming feasible modes of transportation.