The Group 1 W. S Cox Plate is the feature race for the Moonee Valley Racing Club (MVRC) during the Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival. The race is run over 2040m under weight for age conditions and attracts the best horses in Australasia as well as some stars from overseas.
The 2022 W.S Cox Plate will be run on Saturday 22nd October with total prize money of $5,000,000.
WS Cox Plate Background
First run in 1922, and named after the Moonee Valley Racing Club’s founder, the WS Cox Plate is regarded as the premier Weight For Age race of the Melbourne Spring Carnival. The winner of the race is crowned (unofficially) the “best racehorse in Australasia”. The race has taken on an international flavour in recent years with winners from Japan, Ireland and the United Kingdom.
Significance of the WS Cox Plate
Due to the Weight For Age conditions of the race, old-time experts have always argued that the winner of the Cox Plate is the best horse in the land. The list of Cox Plate winners features the greats of Australasian turf. Star gallopers: PHAR LAP, SUNLINE and NORTHERLY have won the Cox Plate twice, with the legendary KINGSTON TOWN celebrating three victories.
However, the most successful Cox Plate horse is the incomparable WINX, who won the race four times. While she was a short-priced favourite on most occasions and stifled betting in the race, WINX gave the race enormous publicity with huge crowds attending to cheer the Waller-trained mare to victory.
Famous Winners of the WS Cox Plate
Legendary jockey Darby Munro is the most successful Cox Plate jockey with five Cox Plate winners over a remarkable 20-year period starting in 1933 with Rogilla and ending with Hydrogen in 1952. Iconic trainer Tommy Smith is the most successful Cox Plate trainer with seven wins including three in a row with the mighty Kingston Town.
Whether it is the tight turning track at Moonee Valley or the amphitheatre effect of the crowd, the atmosphere at the Cox Plate each year is electric. In 1986 BONECRUSHER and OUR WAVERLY STAR fought out a tight finish in a race that has gone down in racing folklore. The 2021 race, where Irish visitor STATE OF REST defeated Godolphin star ANAMOE on the track and in the stewards room is set to be talked about for many years to come.
There is something about the Valley!
Betting on the WS Cox Plate
Outside of WINX and her recent four wins in the race, finding the Cox Plate can be difficult. The last four winners outside of the mighty mare have been making their Australian debut and it is always hard to compare international form with Australian form.
It must be noted that while they do not travel as many horses to Australia as the Europeans, Japanese horses have a good record in all of the Australian feature races, especially in the Spring. Japanese trainers have won the Melbourne Cup, Caulfield Cup and WS Cox Plate already and any horse that makes the trip to Australian shores must be respected.
Once you have made a selection, it is important to bet with a bookmaker that you can trust. Palmerbet is a third-generation Australian bookmaker who offers betting on all the Spring Features, with markets available all year round. They have Cox Plate tips, news and previews available on their blog. Check out Palmerbet or download the app today.