Crazy conditions have caused chaos on Melbourne Cup day at Flemington.
Stewards delayed the second and third races on Tuesday because of visibility concerns in the first race and said they hoped to make up the time to ensure the Cup goes off at its scheduled time of 3pm.
Rain eased at Flemington but the track is still expected to be heavy for the Melbourne Cup after 46mm since 7.30am.
“Geez it’s wet,” Mark Zahra, jockey of first winner of the day Bella Rosa, told Channel 7 after his win.
“I couldn’t see much, I was lucky I had an uninterrupted run.”
Linda Meech, rider of One More Try who won the second race, said the track was the heaviest she had experienced at Melbourne’s premier racecourse.
“I was fine with my visibility. I’ve ridden on worse,” she said.
“I haven’t ridden on a wet track at Flemington as wet as that.”
Meech said although the track was heavy, it was safe.
Channel 7 commentator Hamish McLachlan said officials were staying off the track because it was too dangerous.
“Right now, all of the strappers have taken the horses underneath, they’ve decided not to bring them out. It’s too wet and too dangerous — there has been thunder and lightning,” he said. “It’s a Cup that I’ve not seen before.”
Auvray trainer Richard Freedman said the conditions have changed the chances of a number of horses.
“I tell you what, this rain, it will change everybody’s tactics too,” Freedman told Channel 7.
“It has changed the whole race meeting. Whatever the tips were before the rain came, just throw them out the window and start again.”
Noted wet-tracker Magic Circle is now the $7 equal favourite for the Cup with Yucatan who has eased from $5.50.