Vow and Declare wins the 2019 Melbourne Cup

Chris Young
Sports Reporter

Australian horse Vow and Declare has won the 2019 Melbourne Cup.

Ridden by jockey Craig Williams, the $10 chance won by a nose.

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Master of Reality was second past the post in a photo finish, ridden by jockey Frankie Dettori - but a post-race protest would soon shake the order up.

Australian horse Vow and Declare has won the 2019 Melbourne Cup. Picture: Channel 10

Michael Walker rode Prince of Arran to third.

A protest was lodged by the stewards, with fourth-placed Il Paradiso eventually ruled to have been unfairly compromised by Master of Reality.

Nearly half an hour after the completion of the race, it was announced the protest had been upheld.

Prince of Arran was promoted to second, Il Paradiso to third, while Master of Reality demoted to fourth.

The protest did not affect the race winner, Vow and Declare.

Winning jockey Craig Williams finally breaks through

Williams famously missed the winning ride on the French-trained Dunaden in the 2011 Melbourne Cup because of suspension.

Eight years later, Williams joins Neville Sellwood, Roy Higgins, Pat Hyland, Mick Dittman, Jim Cassidy, Damien Oliver and Chris Munce as the only jockeys to win the "grand slam" of Australian racing - the Golden Slipper, Caulfield Cup, Cox Plate and Melbourne Cup.

In a desperate finish involving four horses, the Danny O'Brien-trained Vow And Declare took an inside run and put his head down when it counted to win in a photo finish.

For O'Brien the win was one that meant everything.

The trainer was involved in a protracted battle with officials over a cobalt case which he eventually won but the process took its toll on his business.

"It doesn't get much better than this," he said.