The Invitation 2023

The Invitation is a new Sydney Spring Racing Carnival feature race offering $2 million in prize money and contested at Royal Randwick Racecourse on Spring Champion Stakes Day.

2021 The Invitation Winner Icebath
Inaugural The Invitation winner Icebath (2021). Photo: Steve Hart.

The race now accompanies the Group 1 $2 million Spring Champion Stakes (2000m) and the recently revamped Group 2 $1 million Callander-Presnell (1600m), the latter formerly known as the Stan Fox Stakes and now replacing the defunct Bondi Stakes.

The Invitation is also held on the same day as Melbourne’s coveted $5 million Cox Plate.

Open only to fillies and mares, The Invitation field features a dozen female gallopers invited to contest the event by a panel selected by Racing NSW.

Fillies and mares from both Australia and New Zealand are invited to contest the lucrative middle-distance feature.

The third edition of The Invitation took place at Randwick on Saturday October 28th, 2023 as part of the Spring Champion Stakes Day program and was won narrowly by the Chris Waller-trained The Everest graduate Espiona ($3.60).

2023 The Invitation Results

The Invitation 2023 race results and finishing order will be available below once the race is run and won on Saturday October 28th, 2023.

2023 The Invitation winner Espiona

2023 The Invitation winner Espiona was too good in the final stride. Photo: Steve Hart.

  • 1st: #2 Espiona
  • 2nd: #4 Ruthless Dame
  • 3rd: #7 Magic Time

The Chris Waller-trained Group 1 winner Espiona ($3.60), coming off a lead-up run in The Everest, was made to work for it in The Invitation 2023 results at Royal Randwick but ultimately was able to salute for right on the line off a perfectly-timed ride by now three-time winning hoop Kerrin McEvoy.

2023 The Invitation Odds

The season’s top The Invitation 2023 odds complete with betting market links will be provided below once markets on the marquee race for fillies and mares during the spring in Sydney are open.

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

The Invitation Race Info

  • Date: Saturday October 28th, 2023
  • Edition: 3rd
  • Track: Royal Randwick Racecourse
  • Distance: 1400m
  • Conditions: Fillies & Mares – Set Weights + Penalties
  • Status: Special Condition (Invitation Only)
  • Prize Money: $2 million
  • First Run: 2021

The Invitation Betting

The Invitation betting markets are led by classy fillies and mares proven in top grade, especially those that secured a Group 1 win in Sydney during the autumn.

As female gallopers are officially invited from across Australia and New Zealand to take place in the $2 million showdown, The Invitation odds on the confirmed starters will shorten.

There are a host of good lead-up races ahead of October’s The Invitation race that will impact betting on the event including any fillies coming out of the Group 1 Flight Stakes (1600m) at the same track earlier in the month.

The first The Invitation race saw Icebath salute at odds of $6 improving on her lead-up ninth in the Group 1 Epsom Handicap (1600m).

There was a notable upset in 2022 with Promise Of Success winning at The Invitation odds of $26.

In 2023 second favourite Espiona won at The Invitation odds of $3.60 off a close seventh in the $20 million The Everest race.

The Invitation Field

The Invitation race field comprises of 12 female gallopers exclusively invited to contest the event.

A potential lead-up for mares into The Invitation field is the Group 3 The Nivison (1200m) run at Rosehill at the start of October.

Up to two emergency runners may be declared for The Invitation field. Strict conditions apply to the scratching of horses from the event. Any mare accepting an invitation for the race may only scratch from the event with a certified veterinary certificate approved by Racing NSW and confirmed by Racing NSW’s industry veterinarian, or otherwise as approved by the Racing NSW.

2023 The Invitation Field

The official The Invitation 2023 final field and barriers will be provided below the week of the race once released by Racing NSW.

The 2023 The Invitation final acceptances close at 10am (AEDT) on Tuesday the 24th of October, 2023.

The 2023 The Invitation final field features a class line-up of mares led in betting by Chris Waller’s Group 1 winner Espiona coming off a run in The Everest.

The Invitation Form Guide

The Invitation form guide provides punters with key race facts and statistics on the fillies and mares in the 12-starter field to help with betting. In The Invitation form guide the full field, barrier draw, jockeys / trainers / owners, distance record, track record and lead-up form is all provided.

Looking at the The Invitation form guide for classy female runners that have a proven record at the Randwick track over 1400m and any Group 1 winning starters is key.

The inaugural The Invitation form was franked in 2021 with the winner Icebath backing-up to finish second in that spring’s Group 1 Kennedy Cantala (1600m) – a race now run as the Champions Mile. Icebath also returned the next autumn to finish third in both the Group 1 Doncaster Mile (1600m) and Group 1 Queen Of The Turf Stakes (1600m) in 2022.

The 2021 second-placed Rocha Clock further franked The Invitation form finishing runner-up next start in the $500,000 Hot Danish Stakes (1400m), while the third place-getter Forbidden Love won the next year’s Group 1 Canterbury Stakes – George Ryder Stakes double in the autumn of 2022.

2023 The Invitation Form Guide

A link to our comprehensive The Invitation 2023 form guide will be provided for punters below the week of the race following final acceptances.


The Invitation Tips

Good The Invitation betting tips include looking for the proven Group 1 fillies and mares in the race out of spring lead-ups including the Flight Stakes and the Epsom Handicap both run over the Randwick mile.

Looking for the mare Kerrin McEvoy is booked to ride could be another key The Invitation tip as he has ridden the first three winners in the event.

2023 The Invitation Tips

Our Ladbrokes’ insider The Invitation 2023 tips and Randwick racing selections will be detailed below closer to race day.

  • To Win: #2 Espiona ($3.40 at time of publish) – BET NOW

Open third edition of The Invitation race but on class alone have to stick with Espiona for Chris Waller. She’s a Group 1 winner with a great record at the track (7:4-0-1) who has been excellent this prep. Won the Group 2 Golden Pendant two back before a midfield seventh only 2.7 lengths beaten in the $20 million The Everest (1200m). That is a strong form line to follow into this arguably easier assignment back against her own kind. Up to the 1400m suits now, her Group 1 Coolmore victory was at 1500m in the autumn, and even with the 59kg at set weights plus penalties looks the one to beat.

The Invitation Results

The official The Invitation race results list the full finishing order of all the gallopers in the field, the winning margin / time, the Trifecta and First Four results plus the starting prices of the runners.

The inaugural The Invitation winner was the Brad Widdup-trained Icebath. Icebath returned to miss the kick in 2022 for a failed title defence running unplaced in the second edition of the $2 million race.

The third champion, Espiona, holds the current The Invitation race record winning in 2023 in a time of 1 minute 21.74 seconds.

Past The Invitation Winners

A complete list of past The Invitation winners and place-getters dating back to the first edition in 2021 can be found below.

Year Winner 2nd 3rd Time
2023 Espiona Ruthless Dame Magic Time 1:21.74
2022 Promise Of Success Electric Girl Nimalee 1:25.05
2021 Icebath Rocha Clock Forbidden Love 1:22.37