Every owner, horse trainer and jockey dreams of not just competing in the Melbourne Cup but winning the ultimate prize. Some teams have won several times, some once, and many not at all. As the Melbourne Cup is the biggest race on the horse racing calendar, it is no surprise that everyone is working hard to become part of history. All of the following horse trainers have been successful to varying degrees, but even if some of them have already won a Melbourne Cup, you can be sure that is what they want to achieve again.
Currently considered the best trainer in Australia, Chris Waller didn’t come from a family of trainers. He built himself up from the beginning and is now one of the most successful trainers there is. He achieved incredible success with thoroughbred racehorse Winx. This champion won 31 races in a row with 25 of them being Group 1 races. Winx never raced in the Melbourne Cup however as the race is 3200 meters long and she never raced further than 2200 meters. In 2021 however, Waller got his ultimate victory at Flemington in the Melbourne Cup with Verry Elleegant, winning over favorite Incentivise. Reports indicate Verry Elleegant has been considered for retirement, but at the time of writing, no decision has been made. Either way, Chris Waller is the trainer who can definitely pull off another win in 2022.
The daughter of legendary thoroughbred trainer Tommy “TJ” Smith, Gai Waterhouse has horse racing in her blood. She grew up around the sport and has been training horses for nearly 30 years. Waterhouse achieved early success with her Victoria Derby-winning horse Nothin’ Leica Dane entering the Melbourne Cup in 1995 and finishing second. In 2013, Waterhouse became the first Australian female trainer to win the Melbourne Cup with her horse Fiorente. The horse also went on to win the Australian Cup the following year. With this type of skill and success, the 2022 Melbourne Cup odds will be interesting if any of her horses make it into the race but only time will tell.
Both Gai and her father have been inducted into the Australian Racing Hall of Fame as well as the Sport Australia Hall of Fame. 2022 will be no different for Gai when it comes to training horses. With retirement not on the horizon for her, she will be no doubt aiming to secure another win in the Melbourne Cup.
Moody took over training Incentivise in September of 2021, and achieved immediate success, winning the Makybe Diva Stakes, the Turnbull Stakes, and the Caulfield Cup. This latest win gave him an automatic entry into the Melbourne Cup, where the gelding was the favorite to win. Unfortunately, Moody just missed out on a win, coming second to Verry Elleegant who led by 3.5 lengths on the last straight. Incentivise was injured during this race and has been healing since. Moody projects a positive outcome for the horse in terms of getting back into form, but this may not be the case. However, Moody is a highly skilled horse trainer, most notably training Black Caviar, one of the best racehorses of the 21st century who, at retirement, had a then-record of winning 15 Group 1 races. Peter Moody is going to be thirsty to have a crack at another Melbourne Cup and clearly has the training skills to make it happen.