Grafton Cup 2023

Ladbrokes Tip: Gai Waterhouse has an excellent record in the Grafton Cup with five wins since 2006.

The Grafton Cup is held at the tail-end of the New South Winter Racing Carnival the Thursday after Queensland’s Winx Guineas Day and takes place at Grafton Racecourse as one of two Black-Type features run by the Clarence River Jockey Club.

2022 Grafton Cup winner Arapaho

2022 Grafton Cup winner Arapaho. Photo: Steve Hart.

The mid-week Listed event is the feature race on Grafton Cup Day, which is the second meeting of the two-day Grafton Cup Carnival that begins on the Wednesday with Ramornie Handicap Day.

A quality handicap race contested over 2350m, the Grafton Cup offers $200,000 in prize money and a ballot exemption into that year’s Newcastle Gold Cup.

The Grafton Cup attracts a strong line-up of winter stayers each year and there are a host of lead-up races that offer a ballot exemption into the field including Rosehill’s W J McKell Cup, Queensland’s Ipswich Cup held the Saturday prior, the Winter Cup at Rosehill, the Caloundra Cup, the Grafton Cup Prelude and the South Grafton Cup.

In 2023 Zoumon completed the WJ McKell Cup – Caloundra Cup – Grafton Cup treble.

Purrfect Deal (2021) became the first horse since Rednav (2016) to do the local Grafton Cup Prelude – Grafton Cup double, while Supply And Demand (2017) took out the Caloundra Cup – Grafton Cup interstate double.

Horses that perform well in the winter’s Grafton Cup results often contest the Listed Wyong Gold Cup (2100m) in September over the spring.

The latest edition of the Grafton Cup ran on Thursday July 13th, 2023 and saw the McKell Cup – Caloundra Cup champion Zoumon ($2.50F) dominate up front as the favourite from the Waterhouse/Bott stable.

2023 Grafton Cup Results

The official Grafton Cup 2023 Results & Finishing Order will be available below once the Listed Grafton race is run and won on Thursday July 13th, 2023.

  • 1st: #2 Zoumon
  • 2nd: #9 Outlandos
  • 3rd: #1 Spirit Ridge

The talented Gai Waterhouse & Adrian Bott-trained Zoustar four-year-old Zoumon ($2.50F) was given a beautiful, front-running ride by Rachel King to dominate the 2023 Grafton Cup results with a win by over two lengths making it three on the trot following his Listed WJ McKell Cup – Caloundra Cup double in the lead-up.

Grafton Cup Race Info

  • Date: Thursday July 13th, 2023
  • Track: Grafton Racecourse
  • Distance: 2350m
  • Conditions: Quality Handicap
  • Status: Listed
  • Prize Money: $200,000
  • First Run: 1910

Grafton Cup Betting

The Grafton Cup betting markets are dominated by in-form stayers coming off good lead-up runs in events during the lead-up winter races in both Sydney and Brisbane especially Rosehill’s Listed WJ McKell Cup (2000m) that last produced a winner in Sixties Groove (2nd in 2020) and Zoumon who did the double in 2023.

There are usually short Grafton Cup odds offered on any quality Gai Waterhouse-trained horses with the trainer boasting five victories in the race since 2006 most recently with Zoumon (2023).

The Kris Lees-trained Sixties Groove ($3.50 in 2020) saluted for the punters when setting a modern-day weight carrying record in the race with 61kg, and the favourites went back-to-back in 2021 with the narrow win by Purrfect Deal ($3.40).

Zoumon ($2.50 in 2023) is the latest Grafton Cup favourite to win.

2023 Grafton Cup Odds

The latest Grafton Cup 2023 betting odds will be provided below as soon as markets on the end-of-winter carnival event on Grafton Cup Day over the winter are announced.

Early market betting odds on the 2024 Grafton Cup will be displayed below once available. Odds are subject to fluctuation. For current odds on all of our live markets, please visit

Grafton Cup Field

Grafton Cup Winner Sixties Groove (pictured at Flemington). Photo: Ultimate Racing Photos |
2020 Grafton Cup Winner Sixties Groove (pictured at Flemington) saluted for the punters. Photo: Ultimate Racing Photos.

The Grafton Cup race field draws a quality line-up of winter stayers from both local and interstate stables.

Runners may come via a number of different lead-up races including the Winter Cup at Rosehill or Queensland’s Ipswich Cup held the Saturday prior.

The Listed Caloundra Cup (2400m) is another key lead-up and Arapaho (2nd in 2022) and Zoumon (1st of 2023) are the latest Grafton Cup winners to come via that Queensland lead-up.

Grafton Cup nominations close the Thursday before race week with final acceptances revealing the field released on the Monday before the race runs on the Wednesday.

2023 Grafton Cup Field

The official Grafton Cup 2023 field of final acceptors is announced by the Clarence River Jockey Club on the Monday of race week and will be published below along with the confirmed jockeys and barriers.

The 2023 Grafton Cup field features a quality line-up of winter stayers led in betting by McKell Cup – Caloundra Cup double winner his last two starts Zoumon from the Waterhouse/Bott stable.

2023 Grafton Cup Nominations

Early Grafton Cup 2023 Nominations close the Thursday leading-up to Grafton Cup Day, which is one of two feature meetings during the Grafton Cup Carnival, and will be provided in full below.

Last 10HorseSexAgeTrainerBallotWeightTrue WeightPenaltyHcp Rating
1x51165x211ZOUMONG4Gai Waterhouse & Adrian Bott1=58.5kg58.5kg99
2109437×016REGAL LION (NZ)G4Annabel Neasham1=58kg58kg98
3515711×075IRISH SEQUEL (IRE)G7Chris Waller1=56.5kg56.5kg95
46005×41351OUR BAMBINOG6Pat Murphy1=54kg54kg69
5041233×652SPIRIT RIDGE (GB)G8Annabel Neasham559kg59kg100
6174×760035LONDON BANKER (NZ)G7Kelly Schweida656kg56kg94
71100016063TAPPY’S LAD (NZ)G5Kerry Taplin755.5kg55.5kg93
860×9946581BENAUDG4John O’Shea855kg55kg92
9111x3222x7BELLACIAOCIAO (FR)M5Annabel Neasham954kg54kg90
100834984191OUTLANDOSG6John Sargent10=54kg54kg87
1110×6586744WILD CHAPG6Brett Lazzarini10=54kg54kg87
1211x77x8973SHAMELESS MISS (NZ)M5Chris Waller1254kg54kg85
131723×67312OLYMPIC CLASSG5Michael Morrison1354kg54kg65
14112×431183GULF OF TOMINIG4Cassandra Schmidt1454kg54kg64
15432x1001x6BYAKKO (USA)G5Donna Grisedale1554kg54kg59
166781221102DEVINE FALLSH4George Sitek16=54kg54kg51
1725311707×2NATURE BOY (NZ)G6Lea Selby16=54kg54kg51
1816581649×8SCILAGOG7Leon Elliott16=54kg54kg51
1988850×8051SUBVERSIVEM4Jason Reilly1954kg54kg50

Table Credit: Racing Australia.

Grafton Cup Form Guide

The Grafton Cup form guide lists for punters all the crucial pre-betting information like the jockeys, trainers, barriers and lead-up runs of the female sprinters in the field.

Runners trained out of Sydney stables have a strong recent record the race, so looking at the local gallopers instead of the visiting runners with a lead-up run at Rosehill is essential when doing the Grafton Cup form.

Horses aged between four and seven years old dominate the Grafton Cup form and results over the past decade with the last three-year-old winner being Stormhill (2005).

The Grafton Cup form has held-up in tougher races and is worth following into the bigger spring races in Sydney and Melbourne later in the year.

The 2022 Grafton Cup winner Arapaho franked the form with a host of good subsequent Group race performances including his 2023 Group 1 Tancred Stakes (2400m) win at Rosehill the following autumn.

2023 Grafton Cup Form

A link to our comprehensive Grafton Cup 2023 form guide and race betting preview will be provided for punters below the week of the event.

Grafton Cup Tips

Grafton Cup tips include looking for in-form winter stayers coming off a win in a Sydney lead-up race, graduates that finished in the money in their lead-up assignment and tipping single-figure fancies.

2023 Grafton Cup Tips

Our Ladbrokes’ exclusive Grafton Cup 2023 betting tips on the Listed race during the winter racing season will be detailed below the week of the race so, stay tuned for those to back and sack this season.

  • To Win: #7 Benaud ($5 at time of publish) – BET NOW

John O’Shea’s Reliable Man four-year-old was eye-catching posting a six-length win at Wyong with 59kg last time out. Steps up in grade here and is down to 55kg to help him in the Grafton Cup. Fourth go at the distance, yet to win but has been placed before and went well enough over 2100m last time out to suggest the mile and a half will be a non-issue. Group 1 placed previously and looks to be peaking.

Grafton Cup Results

The Grafton Cup results show a quality list of past winners, many of which went on to win much bigger and better races including subsequent Melbourne Cup champion Kensei (1987).

Sydney-based stables have the dominant hand in the past Grafton Cup results with Gai Waterhouse holding the modern-day training record with five recent victories since with Rocking On (2006), Queenstown (2014), Bonfire (2015), Supply And Demand (2017), and most recently Zoumon (2023).

Purrfect Deal (2021) was the last Grafton Cup winning mare.

Stormhill (2005) was the last three-year-old Grafton Cup winner.

Bonfire holds the current 2350m Grafton Cup race record winning in 2001 in a time of 2 minutes 22:59 seconds.

Past Grafton Cup Winners

History shows there has been five multiple Grafton Cup winners with Longwy (1919-20), three-time champion Hosier (1922-1924), Home James (1963-64), Jardel (1974-75), and most recently Oppressor (1994-95).

Recent Grafton Cup winners dating back to the year 2000 are detailed in the below table.

Year Winner Trainer/s Jockey Weight Time
2023 Zoumon Gai Waterhouse & Adrian Bott Rachel King 58.5 kgs 2:25.66
2022 Arapaho Bjorn Baker Rachel King 54 kgs 2:25.89
2021 Purrfect Deal Michael Costa Ben Thompson 54 kgs 2:24.44
2020 Sixties Groove Kris Lees Jason Collett 61 kgs 2:25.98
2019 Sacred Day Tony Pike Ben Looker 55.5 kgs 2:23.88
2018 First Crush Chris Munce Mark Du Plessis 55.5 kgs 2:23.88
2017 Supply And Demand Gai Waterhouse & Adrian Bott Joshua Parr 58.5 kgs 2:23.33
2016 Rednav Sally Taylor Peter Graham 54 kgs 2:24.44
2015 Bonfire Gai Waterhouse Blake Shinn 59 kgs 2:22.59
2014 Queenstown Gai Waterhouse Tim Clark 54 kgs 2:24.10
2013 Mr O’ceirin Ciaron Maher Blake Shinn 56 kgs 2:26.16
2012 Shamardashing John Thompson Jeff Lloyd 57.5 kgs 2:25.30
2011 Warrior Within Bruce Hill Paul Hammersley 53 kgs 2:23.56
2010 Twin Wing Guy Walter Jay Ford 57.5 kgs 2:23.98
2009 Castle Heights Donna Logan Stathi Katsidis 53 kgs 2:24.98
2008 Art Success John Collins Jeff Lloyd 58 kgs 2:22.92
2007 Ashraf Stuart Phegan Dale Spriggs 53 kgs 2:22.91
2006 Rocking On Gai Waterhouse James Innes 53 kgs 2:26.41
2005 Stormhill Tim Martin Chris Munce 52 kgs 2:25.50
2004 Pacific Dancer Shaun Dwyer Michael Rodd 53.5 kgs 2:26.48
2003 Belus Robert Smerdon Mark Zahra 54 kgs 2:27.20
2002 Master Pom Stephen Quintano Nathan Cumberland 53 kgs 2:26.86
2001 Desk Top Lover Bill Mitchell Michael Cahill 53 kgs 2:27.78
2000 Simigan Brian Smith Allan Robinson 52.5 kgs 2:26.21