The Melbourne Cup Carnival is the biggest horseracing event in Australia, because the Melbourne Cup is the most famous annual Thoroughbred horserace. The Mackinnon Stakes is featured on the last day of this carnival and attracts quality horses from the W.S Cox Plate and Melbourne Cup to run the distance.
Today, we will discuss a few key things you should know about the Mackinnon Stakes to give you an idea of the upcoming 2021 race. Also, check out todays racing guide to see what else is on.
What You Need to Know About the Mackinnon Stakes 2021
Inaugurated in 1869, the Mackinnon Stakes is a Victoria Racing Club (VRC) Group 1 Thoroughbred Horserace. It is named after a former chairman of the Victoria Racing Club, Lauchlan Kenneth Scobie (“L.K.S.”) MacKinnon.
The race runs 2,000 metres at the Flemington Racecourse in Melbourne, Australia, on the Saturday after the Melbourne Cup is won (6th November, 2021). It is run under Weight for Age conditions on the last day of the Melbourne Cup Carnival.
Weight for Age (WFA)
The Weight for Age (WFA) method is a horse racing condition that tries to equal out the physical progress made by the average thoroughbred as it matures.
During the race, horses carry a set weight according to the WFA Scale. The weight may vary depending on the horse’s sex, age, the race distance, and month of the year. It is a form of handicapping for horse racing but is not referred to as a handicap in the horse racing industry.
This is simply because the term handicap is reserved for more general handicapping, rather than WFA.
As mentioned, the Mackinnon Stakes runs at the Flemington Racecourse at a distance of 2,000 metres. The track’s surface is turf, and the race is run in a left-hand direction under Weight for Age conditions for Thoroughbreds aged three years old and over. Maidens are not eligible for this race.
The total prize money for the Mackinnon Stakes is AUD 2,000,000 along with AUD 2,500 trophy.
This prize purse is distributed from places first through to eighth. First place wins $1,200,000, second place wins AUD 360,000, third place wins AUD 180,000, and there are smaller winnings for the remaining five positions.
The recent winners of the Mackinnon Stakes include Arcadia Queen (J: Luke Currie, T: Grant & Alana Williams) in 2020, Magic Wand (J: Ryan Moore, T: Aidan O’Brien), in 2019, and Trap For Fools (J: John Allen, T: Jarrod McLean) in 2018.
The Flemington’s Mackinnon Stakes is a great race on the last day of the Melbourne Cup Carnival. It is an excellent way to end the carnival with Thoroughbreds from the Cox Plate and Melbourne Cup taking part. Unsurprisingly, 9 out of the previous 11 wins were taken by Thoroughbreds from the Cox Plate.
What is even more interesting is that only two favourites since 2005 have won the Mackinnon Stakes. One was So You Think in 2010, and the other was the most recent Arcadia Queen in 2020.
Currently, the early favourite in 2021 Mackinnon Stakes betting is Zaaki, the seven-length Group 1 Doomben Cup winner. Other popular contenders include Jamie Richards’ multiple Group 1 winner Probabeel and Annabel Neasham-trained Mounga.