Turnbull Stakes

  • Type: Group 1 set weight plus penalties race
  • Distance: 2000 metres
  • Age: Four year olds and over
  • Racecourse: Flemington, Melbourne
  • Prize Purse: $500,000

Named in honour of the former VRC Chairman Richard Turnbull, the Turnbull Stakes is well known for the turnout of top quality horses which start the 2,000 metre event year in and year out. With Australia’s best middle-distance runners, the Turnbull Stakes held every October is often the goal, and while run before the two Cups of the carnival and the Cox Plate is its own race, and not one used as a preparatory feature. The Turnbull Stakes first took place in 1948 as a 12 furlong event and saw Beau Gem take the honours, however could not make the final transition from Group 2 to Group 1 until the 2005 running when the legendary Makybe Diva saw of a top quality field and was then advanced to an elite status event for 2006.

While not quite considered on the same level as more traditional Group 1 features such as the Melbourne Cup, the Turnbull Stakes has quickly cemented itself as a highlight on the Australian racing calendar.

Held as the headlining event on Turnbull Stakes Day, three other feature races also take place, being the Group 2 Edward Manifold Stakes (1600m), the Group 2 Gilgai Stakes (1200m) and the Group 2 Blazer Stakes (1400m). Being the first middle distance feature of the Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival, the Turnbull Stakes gives stayers an opportunity to build up to the longer distances later in the spring, with many winners having gone on to do so in the past.

The Turnbull Stakes is considered by many as a crucial race in the Spring Racing Carnival, with horses who do well in it often promising a solid Melbourne campaign, and allowing trainers to ascertain which events will suit the runners more. Many strong contenders in previous Turnbull Stakes events have gone on to win the Melbourne Cup, the Caulfield Cup or the Cox Plate, and so it is always an exciting race to watch.

Turnbull Stakes Winners

Year Horse
2015
TBD
2014
Lucia Valentina
2013
Happy Trails
2012
Green Moon
2011
December Draw
2010
Zipping
2009
Efficient
2008
Littorio
2007
Devil Moon
2006
Sphenophyta
2005
Makybe Diva
2004
Elvstroem
2003
Studebaker
2002
Northerly
2001
Sunline
2000
Fairway
1999
Sky Heights
1998
Aerosmith
1997
Marble Halls
1996
Doriemus
1995
All Our Mob
1994
Redding
1993
The Phantom Chance
1992
Naturalism
1991
Let’s Elope
1990
Better Loosen Up
1989
Super Impose
1988
Vo Rogue
1987
Vo Rogue
1986
Just Now
1985
Lacka Reason
1984
Al Dwain
1983
Chez Nous
1982
Birchwood
1981
No Peer
1980
Amarla
1979
Dulcify
1978
Lefroy
1977
Salamander
1976
Denise’s Joy
1975
Analight
1974
Leilani
1973
Australasia
1972
Sharif
1971
Igloo
1970
Arctic Symbol
1969
Fileur
1968
Galilee
1967
Stellar Belle
1966
Tobin Bronze
1965
Craftsman
1964
Sir Dane
1963
Sometime
1962
Aquanita
1961
Blue Lodge
1960
Aircraft
1959
Mac
1958
Pandie Sun
1957
Syntax
1956
Pushover
1955
Redcraze
1954
Rising Fast
1953
Petrograd
1952
Aldershot
1951
Morse Code
1950
Comic Court
1949
Comic Court
1948
Beau Gem