Australian Racing’s Biggest Group 1 Upsets


Did anybody back Gatting in the Makybe Diva Stakes on Saturday?
Flemington and the entire racing world was completely stunned when Gatting upstaged Mystic Journey to win the Makybe Diva Stakes at the incredibly juicy odds of $126!
Gatting has joined the short list of Australian horses that have won Group 1 races at triple figure odds and we have combined this list of the biggest Group 1 upsets in the modern era of Australian racing.

Dandy Andy – 1988 Australian Cup

Dandy Andy’s upset win in the 1988 Australian Cup is so infamous that Matt Hill even mentioned it in his excellent call of the Makybe Diva Stakes on Saturday.
The 1988 Australian Cup was meant to be a match race between Vo Rogue and Bonecrusher, but Vo Rogue ran out of gas late and it was Dandy Andy that was able to finish over the top of his rival in what is still considered the biggest upset in the history of Australian racing.

Tears I Cry – 2007 Emirates Stakes

It is only fitting that we touch on Tears I Cry following the retirement of jockey Nikita Beriman last weekend.
Weekend Hussler started the Emirates Stakes as a dominant favourite, but Tears I Cry was able to upstage the superstar at enormous odds.
What made the win even more remarkable was the fact that Tears I Cry was the first Group 1 runner for trainer Ciaron Maher as well as Beriman.
It is fair to say that Maher has gone on with the job since!

Rebel Raider – 2008 Victoria Derby

It was yet another female hoop, this time Claire Lindop, that was able to pilot Rebel Raider to an enormous upset win in the 2008 Victoria Derby.
Caulfield Guineas winner Whobegotyou started the Victoria Derby as an odds-on favourite, but he was outstayed by his rival Rebel Raider at the enormous odds of $101.
Rebel Raider proved that win was no fluke when he won the South Australian Derby the following year!

Zavite – 2011 Ranvet Stakes

Zavite was no slouch – he won the 2007 Queen Elizabeth Stakes, 2009 Launceston Cup, 2009 Adelaide Cup, 2010 Auckland Cup and ran in the Melbourne Cup – but few punters thought that he could win the 2011 Ranvet Stakes.
The race was expected to be a battle between Caulfield Cup winner Descarado and Melbourne Cup runner-up Maluckyday, but Zavite led from start to finish to steal the race at $101.

Prince Of Penzance – 2015 Melbourne Cup

This win is so famous that they made a movie out of it.
Prince Of Penzance went into the 2015 edition of the Melbourne Cup at $101, but a peach of a ride from Michelle Payne and a fairly dicey Flemington track allowed him to score a huge upset win.
If you want to relive it, check out Ride Like A Girl that is in cinemas now!

Lasqueti Spirit – 2016 VRC Oaks

You may never see a better ride in a Group 1 race than this one from Brenton Avdulla.
Lasqueti Spirit wasn’t the fastest horse in the VRC Oaks field and she had previously been beaten at Hawkesbury and Kembla Grange, but she could stay.
Avdulla took her straight to the lead in the early stages of the race and opened up a huge lead coming into the Flemington straight.
Although it looked as though she would tire, none of her rivals ever looked like catching her and Avdulla took a well-deserved bow after the race.

Mighty Boss – 2017 Caulfield Guineas

Kementari looked to have the 2017 edition of the Caulfield Guineas in the bag when he shot clear at the top of the Caulfield straight and it would have been easy to miss the blonde-looking horse on the rail.
Michael Walker timed his run to perfection on Mighty Boss and he hit the front in the shadows of the post to record the biggest upset in the history of the Caulfield Guineas!

Gatting – 2019 Makybe Diva Stakes

You want to make excuses for Mystic Journey, but Gatting beat her fair and square in the Makybe Diva Stakes on Saturday.
Gatting had previously won well at Group 1 level and he won the Hyperion Stakes in June, but in his final start before the Makybe Diva Stakes, he had finished at the tail of the field in the Idyllic Prince Stakes.
He started at $126, but he won like a genuine favourite and has now stamped himself as a genuine contender for the Ladbrokes Cox Plate!

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