Victoria Derby

  • Type: Group 1 set weight race
  • Distance: 2500 metres
  • Age: 3 year olds
  • Racecourse: Flemington, Melbourne
  • 1st Place Prize Money: $900,000 plus trophies to owner, trainer and rider
  • Set Weight: Colts & Geldings 55.5 kg, Fillies 53.5 kg

After an unpromising debut in 1854 with only one entry received, the Victoria Derby is now the longest running classic race in Australia and is often regarded as the race which is the true test of a horse’s staying power. For racing purists, Victoria Derby Day is like being a kid in a candy store as all the day’s races have a group status. Held on the last Saturday before the Melbourne Cup, the Victoria Derby has only been won two consecutive times by Fireworks in 1867 and 1868, proving just how strenuous this race is.

Known as race 6 on the AAMI Victoria Derby Day time sheet, the 2.55pm race was first hosted by the Turf Club and then in 1857, it was handed over to the Jockey Club until 1864 when the club was renamed as the Victoria Race Club. Between 1868 and 1869, the race was held on New Year’s Day and in 1888 Martini Henri became the first Maiden winner of the race. Although the first three winners of the race were all fillies, the event is another male dominated race with the last filly, Frances Tressady winning in 1923. In 2004 Phar Lap was named the greatest Derby winner by racing experts after his win in 1929. Following his success, geldings were prohibited from racing in the Victoria Derby between 1931 and 1956.

Bart Cummings also etched his name into the Derby books after his wins in 1972 and 1973 with Dayana and Taj Rossi. In that same year (1973), the Victoria Derby race length was increased to 2500 metres. Between 1988 and 2007, the race winners became eligible to run in the Melbourne Cup, increasing the desire of all jockeys and trainers to win. Inspirational jockey Damien Oliver won the race in three consecutive years, 2001, 2002, 2003.

Victoria Derby Winners

Year Horse
2015 TBD
2014 Preferment
2013 Polanski
2012 Fiveandahalfstar
2011 Sangster
2010 Lion Tamer
2009 Monaco Consul
2008 Rebel Raider
2007 Kibbutz
2006 Efficient
2005 Benicio
2004 Plastered
2003 Elvstroem
2002 Helenus
2001 Amalfi
2000 Hit The Roof
1999 Blackfriars
1998 Arena
1997 Second Coming
1996 Portland Player
1995 Nothin’ Leica Dane
1994 Blevic
1993 Mahogany
1992 Redding
1991 Star Of The Realm
1990 Fire Oak
1989 Stylish Century
1988 King’s High
1987 Omnicorp
1986 Raveneaux
1985 Handy Proverb
1984 Red Anchor
1983 Bounty Hawk
1982 Grosvenor
1981 Brewery Boy
1980 Sovereign Red
1979 Big Print
1978 Dulcify
1977 Stormy Rex
1976 Unaware
1975 Galena Boy
1974 Haymaker
1973 Taj Rossi
1972 Dayana
1971 Classic Mission
1970 Silver Sharpe
1969 Daryl’s Joy
1968 Always There
1967 Savoy
1966 Khalif
1965 Tobin Bronze
1964 Royal Sovereign
1963 Craftsman
1962 Coppelius
1961 New Statesman
1960 Sky High
1959 Travel Boy
1958 Sir Blink
1957 Tulloch
1956 Monte Carlo
1955 Sailor’s Guide
1954 Pride Of Egypt
1953 Prince Morvi
1952 Advocate
1951 Hydrogen
1950 Alister
1949 Delta
1948 Comic Court
1947 Beau Gem
1946 Prince Standard
1945 Magnificent
1944 San Martin
1943 Precept
1942 Great Britain
1941 Skipton
1940 Lucrative
1939 Reading
1938 Nuffield
1937 Hua
1936 Talking
1935 Feldspar
1934 Theo
1933 Hall Mark
1932 Liberal
1931 Johnnie Jason
1930 Balloon King
1929 Phar Lap
1928 Strephon
1927 Trivalve
1926 Rampion
1925 Manfred
1924 Spearfelt
1923 Frances Tressady
1922 Whittier
1921 Furious
1920 Salitros
1919 Richmond Main
1918 Eusebius
1917 Biplane
1916 Wolaroi
1915 Patrobas
1914 Carlita
1913 Beragoon
1912 Wolawa
1911 Wilari
1910 Beverage
1909 Prince Foote
1908 Alawa
1907 Mountain King
1906 Poseidon
1905 Lady Wallace
1904 Sylvanite
1903 F.J.A.
1902 Abundance
1901 Hautvilliers
1900 Maltster
1899 Merriwee
1898 Cocos
1897 Amberite
1896 Newhaven
1895 Wallace
1894 The Harvester
1893 Carnage
1892 Camoola
1891 Strathmore
1890 The Admiral
1889 Dreadnought
1888 Ensign
1887 The Australian Peer
1886 Trident
1885 Nordenfeldt
1884 Rufus
1883 Martini Henry
1882 Navigator
1881 Darebin
1880 Grand Flaneur
1879 Suwarrow
1878 Wellington
1877 Chester
1876 Briseis
1875 Robin Hood
1874 Melbourne
1873 Lapidist
1872 Loup Gaou
1871 Miss Jessie
1870 Florence
1869 Charon
1869 My Dream
1868 Fireworks
1867 Fireworks
1866 Sea Gull
1865 Angler
1864 Lantern
1863 Oriflamme
1862 Barwon
1861 Camden
1860 Flying Colours
1859 Buzzard
1858 Brownlock
1857 Tricolor
1856 Flying Doe
1855 Rose Of May