The Big Dance 2023

The Big Dance runs in Sydney on the same as Victoria’s iconic Melbourne Cup Day card!

The Big Dance is a new, $3 million Special Conditions event run and won at Sydney’s Royal Randwick Racecourse on the first Tuesday of November.

2022 Big Dancer Winner Rustic Steel
2022 Big Dancer winner Rustic Steel. Photo: Steve Hart.

It was announced at the same time as the $2 million The Five Diamonds (1600m), a race open only to five-year-olds that will run at Rosehill on the Saturday after Sydney’s The Big Dance Day.

The Big Dance prize money for the opening edition in 2022 was $2 million before being boosted to $3 million for the second running in 2023.

Contested on the same date as Flemington’s famous Melbourne Cup race, The Big Dance takes place over 1600m and is a quality handicap event with a 62kg maximum weight.

A spot in The Big Dance field is restricted to horses contesting one of 25 selected Country Cups throughout the year.

The second edition of The Big Dance ran on Tuesday November 7, 2023 at Royal Randwick on Melbourne Cup Day offering $3 million in stakes and was won in an upset by Sara Ryan’s Coffs Harbour Cup winner Attractable ($19).

2023 The Big Dance Results

The 2023 The Big Dance Results & Finishing Order will be available below once the first edition of the $3 million race is run and won on Tuesday November 7, 2023.

2023 The Big Dance winner Attractable

2023 The Big Dance winner Attractable was strong at a big price in the second edition of the $3 million showdown. Photo: Steve Hart.

  • 1st: #3 Attractable
  • 2nd: #1 Cepheus
  • 3rd: #14 Super Helpful

The Sara Ryan-trained Attractable ($19), coming off a $1.5 million Alan Brown Stakes fourth, was excellent second-up off an on-pace ride to hit the front at the 300m and hold off the top-weight Cepheus in a strong second edition of the $3 million The Big Dance race.

2023 The Big Dance Odds

The latest The Big Dance 2023 betting odds including pre-nomination futures markets on one of the seven-figure Sydney Spring Racing Carnival features will provided below as soon as available.

Early market betting odds on the 2024 The Big Dance will be displayed below once available. Odds are subject to fluctuation. For current odds on all of our live markets, please visit ladbrokes.com.au.

The Big Dance Info

  • Date: Tuesday November 7, 2023
  • Track: Randwick Racecourse
  • Distance: 1600m
  • Conditions: 3YOs & Upwards – Quality Handicap
  • Other Conditions: Restricted to horses contesting one 25 selected Country Cups 
  • Status: Special Condition
  • Prize Money: $3 million
  • First Run: 2022
 

The Big Dance Betting

The Big Dance betting markets are led by in-form Country Cups horses, especially those to have won one or more of the specified races marking their eligibility to contest the $3 million showdown.

Any runners proven in the big city with previous winning form at the Randwick track, and those with a strong strike-rate over the 1600m distance sit higher up The Big Dance odds for the spring.

The first and second place-getters out of The Big Dance Wild Card event on The Everest Day are also sure to feature highly in The Big Dance markets each season.

Gallopers proven in tougher grade, Black-Type events are also set to dominate betting on The Big Dance race, especially those that ran well over the winter prior in races like the Listed Scone Cup (1600m) – which is one of the official qualifying races – in May and Rosehill’s Listed W.J. McKell Cup (2000m).

In 2022 Rustic Steel – at generous Big Dance odds of $12 – became the first horse to complete the Scone Cup – Big Dance double.

There was another upset in 2023 with Attractable saluting at $19.

The Big Dance Field

The Big Dance race field features the season’s top performing Country Cup horses from mainly local Sydney-based stables and has a capacity of 20 starters.

The Big Dance field is restricted to the official winners and second placed horses of qualifying races, as specified by Racing NSW.

Some of the more notable qualifying races for The Big Dance field include the Scone Cup and Wagga Wagga Gold Cup.

Horses may contest multiple The Big Dance qualifying races, even if they have won an earlier qualifier.

Runners will also get a chance to earn a spot in The Big Dance field via The Big Dance Wild Card race run over the Randwick mile on The Everest Day in mid-October. The Big Dance Wild Card race will be open to any horse that has contested one of the qualifying races, without winning a qualifying race. The first and second placed horses from the race will qualify for the Big Dance.

A new lead-up into The Big Dance field where the form is tipped to hold up on the first Tuesday of November is the $1.5 million Alan Brown Stakes (1400m) at Rosehill won for the first time in 2023 by all-in The Big Dance favourite Cepheus.

Cepheus went on to carry the hefty 62kg top-weight in the 2023 Big Dance field and went down as the beaten favourite behind upset winner Attractable who came off a lead-up fourth in the Alan Brown Stakes.

2023 The Big Dance Field

The official The Big Dance 2023 field and barriers will be announced the week of the race and published in full below.

The Big Dance 2023 final acceptances close at 9am on Friday, 27th October 2023.

The 2023 The Big Dance final field features a capacity line-up of Country Cup winners including Matthew Dunn’s 62kg top-weight Cepheus who has won the Group 2 Shannon Stakes (1500m) and the $1.5 million The Alan Brown (1400m) at his latest two starts at the Rosehill track.

2023 The Big Dance Nominations

Early The Big Dance 2023 nominations will be detailed below once confirmed.

Horses will automatically feature in The Big Dance nominations based on the results of the official qualifying races.

2023 Big Dance Qualifying Races

RaceDistanceDateWinner
Goulburn Cup1400m30 October 2022Oscar Zulu
Snake Gully Cup (Gundagai)1400m11 November 2022Super Helpful
Taree Cup2000m20 November 2022Military Mission
Mudgee Cup1600m2 December 2022Camaguey
Nowra Cup1600m4 December 2022French Bonnet
Armidale Cup1900m11 December 2022Pepper’s Ghost
Coonabarabran Cup1600m23 December 2022Knife’s Edge
Moruya Cup1425m2 January 2023Crackalacka
Ballina Cup1590m13 January 2023Point Counterpoint
Bega Cup (Sapphire Coast)1600m29 January 2023Manderboss
Albury Gold Cup2000m24 March 2023Beltoro
Wellington Cup1700m26 March 2023High Court
Muswellbrook Gold Cup1500m31 March 2023Commando Hunt
Orange Gold Cup2000m15 April 2023Unamerican
Tamworth Cup1400m22 April 2023Banju
Wagga Wagga Gold Cup2000m5 May 2023Wicklow
Scone Cup1600m12 May 2023Commando Hunt
Gunnedah Cup1600m28 May 2023Akasawa
South Grafton Cup1600m9 July 2023Cepheus
Narrandera Cup1600m16 July 2023Prince Of Helena
Coffs Harbour Cup1600m4 August 2023Attractable 
Forbes Cup1600m6 August 2023Just A Brother
Murwillumbah Cup1550m25 August 2023Wategos
Dubbo Gold Cup1600m10 September 2023Iknowastar
Lismore Cup2100m21 September 2023Full Press
Bathurst Cup1800m24 September 2023Super Pursuit
Port Macquarie Cup2000m6 October 2023Superium
Coonamble Cup1600m8 October 2023Hollywood Hero
Wild Card (Randwick)1600m21 October 2023King Of The Castle

The Big Dance Form Guide

The Big Dance race form guide lists the full line-up of runners, their connections (owner / jockey / trainer) that stand to win one of Australian racing’s newest prizes, and gives a rundown on their lead-up form / career statistics.

2023 The Big Dance Form

A link to our detailed The Big Dance 2023 form guide will be available below the week leading-up to the $3 million mile event at Royal Randwick on Melbourne Cup Day.

The Big Dance Tips

Top The Big Dance racing tips include looking for the winners of the standout lead-up Country Cup races, proven milers and those from Sydney’s premier stables.

2023 The Big Dance Tips

Our expert team of tipsters will provide the 2023 The Big Dance betting tips below closer to the day so stay tuned for the milers to back and sack this spring.

  • To Win: #8 Iknowastar ($6.50 at time of publish) – BET NOW

Typically open edition of this Melbourne Cup Day race in Sydney but Iknowastar is absolutely airborne and is hard to knock coming off four straight wins. The Bjorn Baker-trained Star Witness four-year-old is ultra-consistent and is five-from-five at the Big Dance distance. He is back up to his pet mile distance for the first time since his Dubbo Cup triumph in September. Carried a hefty 61kg to victory at Kensington last start over 1550m to set a new track record. In the big city now and will relish coming down to just 53kg. Tyler Schiller comes aboard and drawn a treat in gate three. Can keep the wins coming.

The Big Dance Bet Types

Win – The most basic type of bet. Put your money straight up on the runner that you think will win The Big Dance.

Place – Pick the horse that you think will finish in the top three positions but at lower odds.

Each-Way – Put equal amounts on a horse for the win and a place, the equivalent of two bets and you get paid out for both if it wins.

Quinella – Bet on the horses you think will finish first and second in either order. You can also pick for example one horse to finish 1st and then a combination. The fewer horses you pick the greater the dividend.

Exacta – An exacta also involves choosing horses that you think will finish first and second but it differs from a quinella in that it has to be the exact order you specify in the bet.

Trifecta – Very similar to an Exacta, but for the first, second and third placings in the correct finishing order. You can also Box Trifecta to finish in any of the first 3 combinations.

First Four – A First Four bet works the same as an Exacta and Trifecta but for the first four runners in finishing order.

The Big Dance Results

The Big Dance results from Sydney are available on the first Tuesday of November each year.

The very first Big Dance winner was the Kris Lees-trained Rustic Steel at $12.

The second The Big Dance winner was $19 pop Attractable prepared by Sara Ryan.

Past The Big Dance Winners

Past The Big Dance winners and place-getters dating back to the race’s inauguration in 2022 are detailed in the below table.

Year Winner 2nd 3rd Time
2023 Attractable Cepheus Super Helpful 1:34.49
2022 Rustic Steel Cisco Bay Sibaaq 1:33.87