Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival 2024

The Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival is the biggest event on the Australian horse racing calendar for that time of year with more Group 1 races offering more prize money than the earlier Melbourne Festival of Racing.Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival

Group 1 race meetings take place at Rosehill Gardens Racecourse and Royal Randwick Racecourse from late February until mid-April after a number of Group 2 race days leading up to the majors.

Verry Elleegant Stakes Day (formerly Chipping Norton Stakes Day) opens the Group 1 Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival with another early highlight being Golden Sipper Day at Rosehill featuring the world’s richest race for two-year-olds in March.

The Verry Elleegant Stakes is the opening Group 1 race of the season in Sydney and was renamed from the Chipping Norton Stakes in 2024 to honour Chris Waller’s two-time hero and subsequent Melbourne Cup winning mare Verry Elleegant.

Before the Group 1 racing begins Randwick hosts the Restricted Listed $2 million Inglis Millennium (1100m) at the start of February.

The real action though takes place in April for The Championships.

Held across the first two Saturdays in April the min-carnival is host to 10 individual Group 1 races including the Group 1 $5 million Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) that offers prize money now equal to the Group 1 $4.92 million Golden Slipper Stakes for two-year-olds run earlier during the festival.

Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival: Key Races

2024 Golden Slipper Stakes

The $4.92 million Golden Slipper Stakes is the world’s richest race for 2YO horses.

  • Track: Rosehill
  • Distance: 1200m
  • Conditions: 2YO Set Weights
  • Status: Group 1
  • Prize Money: $4.92 million
  • First Prize: $2.8 million
  • Sponsor: Longines
  • First Run: 1957
  • Reigning Champion: Lady Of Camelot (2024)

2024 Tancred Stakes

The Tancred Stakes, formerly The BMW due to sponsorship, is a lucrative weight-for-age race held at Rosehill offering a ballot exemption into the Queen Elizabeth Stakes and Sydney Cup.

  • Track: Rosehill
  • Distance: 2400m
  • Conditions: Weight-for-age
  • Status: Group 1
  • Prize Money: $1.5 million
  • First Prize: $870,000
  • Sponsor: Kia
  • First Run: 1963
  • Reigning Champion: Kalapour (2024)

2024 TJ Smith Stakes

The TJ Smith Stakes is the richest sprint race in Sydney during the autumn having been boosted to $3 million ahead of 2023, and the event is often contested by horses targeting the spring’s $15 million The Everest race.

  • Track: Randwick
  • Distance: 1200m
  • Conditions: Weight-for-age
  • Status: Group 1
  • Prize Money: $3 million
  • First Prize: $1,725,000
  • First Run: 1997
  • Reigning Champion: Chain Of Lightning (2024)

2024 Doncaster Mile

The Doncaster Mile is the feature race on Day 1 of The Championships with $4 million on offer in the 1600m classic. The Doncaster Mile winner earns exemption into the following weekend’s Queen Elizabeth Stakes field.

  • Track: Randwick
  • Distance: 1600m
  • Conditions: Open Handicap
  • Status: Group 1
  • Prize Money: $4 million
  • First Prize: $2,300,000
  • Sponsor: The Star
  • First Run: 1866
  • Reigning Champion: Celestial Legend (2024)

2024 Queen Elizabeth Stakes

The Queen Elizabeth Stakes is the richest race of the autumn now offering $5 million in stakes and headlines The Championships Day 2.

  • Track: Randwick
  • Distance: 2000m
  • Conditions: Weight-for-age
  • Status: Group 1
  • Prize Money: $5 million
  • First Prize: $2,950,000
  • Sponsor: Longines
  • First Run: 1851
  • Reigning Champion: Pride Of Jenni (2024)

2024 Sydney Cup

The Sydney Cup is the other Group 1 race over two miles along with the Melbourne Cup in the spring.

  • Track: Randwick
  • Distance: 3200m
  • Conditions: Handicap
  • Status: Group 1
  • Prize Money: $2 million
  • First Prize: $1,155,000
  • Sponsor: Schweppes
  • First Run: 1862
  • Reigning Champion: Circle Of Fire (2024)

2024 Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival Betting

Futures racing odds on the Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival 2024 Group 1 races are open well ahead of the events. Some of the major all-in Group 1 racing odds for the autumn can be accessed by following the market links in our “Key Races” section above.

Betting on the Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival is hugely popular and all the standard horse racing bet types are available, along with a host of exclusive promotional betting markets and specials on selected races.

Many punters use the lead-up races held in Victoria during the Melbourne Autumn Racing Carnival as a guide to their Sydney Autumn betting selections as a host of horses come out of the events down south.

Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival betting is also often dominated by Group 1 doubles, that is backing a horse to win two pre-determined races like the Tancred Stakes – Sydney Cup.

2024 Major Race Days

See below for the full breakdown of the major Race Days held throughout the Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival 2024.

VERRY ELLEEGANT STAKES DAY 2024

Date: Saturday March 2, 2024

Racecourse: Royal Randwick Racecourse

Feature Races –

The opening Group 1 race meeting of Sydney’s Autumn Racing Carnival is headlined by the Group 1 Verry Elleegant Stakes (1600m) – formerly the Chipping Norton Stakes – for milers run under weight-for-age conditions which is worth $1 million in stakes for the first time in 2024 and the recently upgraded Group 1 Surround Stakes for three-year-old fillies.

Formerly run at Warwick Farm before a move to Royal Randwick, the meeting’s line-up also features three Group 2 events including two Golden Slipper lead-up races in the Group 2 Sweet Embrace Stakes (1200m) and Group 2 Skyline Stakes (1200m) for the juveniles.

RANDWICK GUINEAS DAY 2024

Date: Saturday March 9, 2024

Racecourse: Royal Randwick

Feature Races –

Royal Randwick hosts its first Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival Group 1 with the three-year-old staying types running over the mile in the Group 1 Royal Randwick Guineas (1600m), many going on to attempt the Rosehill Guineas over more distance later in the carnival. The Randwick Guineas winner is exempt from ballot from the major three-year-olds’ race of the season, the ATC Derby.

The other elite level is the Group 1 Canterbury Stakes (1300m) that offers a ballot exemption to the winner for the George Ryder Stakes and the Doncaster Mile.

Plenty of Group 2 support races including more Golden Slipper trials for the two-year-olds in the Reisling Stakes (1200m) for the fillies and the Todman Stakes (1200m) for the young colts and geldings.

COOLMORE CLASSIC DAY 2024

Date: Saturday March 16, 2024

Racecourse: Rosehill Gardens

Feature Races –

Rosehill Gardens hosts Coolmore Classic Day in mid-March headlined by the fillies and mares facing off in the Group 1 Coolmore Classic (1500m) where Queen Of The Turf Stakes hopes strut their stuff, and in 2024 the Coolmore prize money has been boosted to $1 million!

While only holding Group 3 status, the Sky High Stakes has a juicy $350,000 on offer that is more than the Group 2 races on the program.

More Doncaster Mile-bound runners face off in the Group 2 Ajax Stakes (1500m) before the Golden Slipper race continues with a ballot exemption into the classic on offer to both the Magic Night Stakes and Pago Pago Stakes winners on this card.

GOLDEN SLIPPER STAKES DAY 2024

Date: Saturday March 23, 2024

Racecourse: Rosehill Gardens

Feature Races –

A week after Coolmore Classic Day racing returns to Rosehill Gardens for Golden Slipper Stakes Day, which is host to a bumper five Group 1 races.

The day’s marquee event is the Group 1 Golden Slipper Stakes (1200m), the richest race for two-year-olds in the world with $2.8 million on offer to the winning youngster with total prize money boosted from $3.5 million to $5 million ahead of the 2022 edition and then cut slightly to $4.92 from 2023.

The Golden Slipper is supported by a quartet of other elite levels including Doncaster Mile-bound runners in the Group 1 George Ryder Stakes (1500m) that Canterbury Stakes horses usually back up in.

The Group 1 Ranvet Stakes (2000m) is a traditional weight-for-age lead-up into The BMW (now Tancred Stakes) run over the mile and a half under the same conditions, and also offers a ballot free ride for the winner into the lucrative Queen Elizabeth Stakes and the Sydney Cup over the two miles.

The short-distance sprinters get a chance for a juicy pay day Group 1 The Galaxy (1100m) that leads up to the TJ Smith Stakes, while the three-year-olds coming out of the Randwick Guineas run in the Group 1 Rosehill Guineas (2000m) ahead of the ATC Derby and ATC Oaks.

TANCRED STAKES DAY 2024

Date: Saturday March 30, 2024

Racecourse: Rosehill Gardens

Feature Races –

The third Rosehill Gardens Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival feature meeting is H E Tancred Stakes Day in late March with a double shot of Group 1 racing for punters including The Tancred (2400m) for WFA stayers.

It is supported by the Group 1 Vinery Stud Stakes (2000m) for three-year-old fillies eyeing a run over more distance in the upcoming ATC Oaks at Randwick.

The best of the other races on the card holding black type status are the Queen Of The Turf Stakes ballot exemption offering Group 2 Emancipation Stakes (1500m) for fillies and mares and the Group 3 Doncaster Prelude (1500m) leading up the rich mile feature – The Doncaster Mile – the following month.

THE CHAMPIONSHIPS 2024

DAY 1: DONCASTER MILE DAY 2024

Date: Saturday April 6, 2024

Racecourse: Royal Randwick

Feature Races –

The Championships kicks off at Royal Randwick in early April each Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival with Doncaster Mile Day featuring four Group 1 classics including the lucrative Group 1 Doncaster Mile (1600m) handicap clash now offering $4 million.

The sprinters run under WFA conditions in the Group 1 TJ Smith Stakes (1200m) before the staying three-year-olds take to the track in the Group 1 Australian Derby (2400m) over the mile and a half.

The last of the Group 1s is the two-years-old Inglis’ Sires Produce Stakes (1400m), with five other Group status races across the 10 race card.

The longest distanced race of the carnival to date is the Group 2 Chairman’s Handicap (2600m) for Sydney Cup hopes, while the ATC Oaks-bound fillies get a lead-up run in the Group 3 Adrian Knox Stakes (2000m).

DAY 2: QUEEN ELIZABETH STAKES DAY 2024

Date: Saturday April 13, 2024

Racecourse: Royal Randwick

Feature Races –

Day 2 of The Championships is one of the most anticipated Australian race days of the year with the autumn’s richest race, the Group 1 $5 million Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) heading the lucrative line-up.

The weight-for-age Queen Elizabeth Stakes that brings a field coming out of lead-ups including the previous year’s Epsom Handicap and The Metropolitan, as well as the Ranvet Stakes, Tancred Stakes and Doncaster Mile from the current season.

The other major race on the card is the Group 1 Sydney Cup (3200m) run over the traditional Cup distance of two miles like the famous Flemington equivalent – the Melbourne Cup on the first Tuesday of November.

Also on offer for punters is the Group 1 Australian Oaks (2400m), also known as the ATC Oaks, for three-year-old fillies and the Group 1 Queen Of The Turf Stakes (1600m) for female gallopers only.

ALL AGED STAKES DAY

Date: Saturday April 20, 2024

Racecourse: Royal Randwick

Feature Races –

The last official day of the Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival taking place after the two-day The Championships festivities is All Aged Stakes Day, home to the final two Group 1 races of the autumn.

The weight-for-age sprinter / milers run in the Group 1 All Aged Stakes (1400m), while the two-year-olds get a shot at a final Group 1 in the Champagne Stakes (1600m) over a mile.