Racing stewards have issued a warning to all Melbourne Cup jockeys over the controversial whipping issue that dominated last year's race.
Jockeys were sent text messages on the morning of Tuesday's big race, with threats of fines and suspensions for anyone who breaches racing regulations at Flemington.
Last year saw a quarter of the riders in the Melbourne Cup field flaunt the excessive whipping rule that safeguards the welfare of the horses.
Six jockeys were fined in the 2018 edition of the Melbourne Cup for excessive whipping, including winning jockey Kerrin McEvoy on Cross Counter.
McEvoy was pinged for using the whip nine times on his horse before the 100-metre mark, when regulations state that four times is the maximum allowed.
Racing Victoria has warned jockeys they will face heavy punishment if found to be in breach of the rules this year, as reported by The Age.
"If a jockey goes over it has to be a significant penalty and they’ve been made well aware of the whip rule which they ride under every day," Racing Victoria chief steward Robert Cram said.
"Given the magnitude of this race we know the spotlight is on us.
"The penalty is going to be a significant suspension and fines, but we also have to take into account the magnitude of the breach. We don’t want to see what happened last year happen again.
"We'll talk to them before the race as well to remind them of their obligations with the whip and about riding safely. We don’t want jockeys flaunting the rules just to win the Melbourne Cup."
Punter’s crazy bet on $101 Melbourne Cup outsider
A horse racing fan is hunting a monster payday after placing $2,500 on thoroughbred Sound at the Melbourne Cup.
Despite the guides and the experts placing Finche and Mer De Glace as early favourites, one punter is searching for a $252,500 payday after placing $2,500 on Sound at $101 odds.
It would certainly be an astonishing victory for the thoroughbred who has struggled since coming over from Germany last year.
The 53.5kg thoroughbred recently finished 10th in the Caulfield Cup, but struggled in the 2018 Melbourne Cup.
However, jockey James Winks and trainer Michael Moroney are hoping Sound has enough in the tank to take home the prestigious trophy.
Another punter also placed $1,000 on Neufbosc at $101.
TAB bets of note placed today on the #MelbourneCup at @FlemingtonVRC (post time 3pm AEDT):— TABcomau Media (@tabcomaumedia) November 4, 2019
$10,000 @ $9 Mer De Glace
$8,000 win / $7,000 place @ $26/$7.25 Master Of Reality
$7,000 @ $8 Finche
$3,500 @ $9.50 Constantinople
$2,500 @ $101 Soundhttps://t.co/pT2oJlUzoZ pic.twitter.com/3I7XywwDHp
$2500 @ $101 on Sound?? lol he must love donating money— A (@DEFIANCE_187) November 4, 2019