Cross Counter may return in 2019 to defend Melbourne Cup

YTucatan is the Cup favourite a things stand

Camera IconYTucatan is the Cup favourite a things stand

The horse was euthanised after the race at Flemington.

"Our sympathies are extended to Coolmore and the Williams family, the owners of The Cliffsofmoher, jockey Ryan Moore, trainer Aidan O'Brien and his staff who cared for the horse and are greatly saddened by their loss", he added.

The Cliffsofmoher suffered a fractured right shoulder when injured in the Melbourne Cup, unfortunately could not be saved.

Charlie Appleby, trainer of Cross Counter, became the first Englishman to ever train a Melbourne Cup victor. It was only Cross Counter's eighth start, but he had missed a top-two finish only once.

English trainer Charlie Fellowes, who prepared third-placegetter A Prince Of Arran, said on Wednesday: "It can't be ignored that there has been a lot of injuries to European horses in the build-up, more than usual".

The victor stormed down from the outside in the final several hundred meters for a length victory.

Cross Counter was the final victor of the Melbourne Cup after a nail-biting final, taking the lead in the very last seconds of the home stretch.

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Appleby said Cross Counter will leave Australia on Sunday as a Melbourne Cup victor and time will tell where he ends up, with last year's victor Rekindling unraced since last year's win. "What a field to do it in".

"Before they've even finished maturing, these 500-kilogram [1,102 pounds] animals are forced to race at breakneck speeds while being whipped and pushed past their limits, supported on ankles as small as those of humans".

Speaking to media prior to the race, McEvoy revealed that he had promised his kids a swimming pool and his wife a house if he took out a third Melbourne Cup, and now he is set to stay true to his word.

"I'm absolutely delighted. This is everybody's dream", said Appleby, who also prepared Epsom Derby victor Masar.

Harry White and Bobby Lewis hold the current record for most Melbourne Cup wins by jockey with four wins apiece.

In a statement the RSPCA said there was a growing number of Australians who felt uncomfortable watching horse racing.

Sportsbet on Tuesday said Perth punters were favouring favourites Magic Circle ($7), Yucatan ($7) and Marmelo ($13) but also had a soft spot for the outsiders.

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