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11 months ago Melbourne Cup

Michelle Payne returns after winning the Melbourne Cup. Photo: Sharon Chapman

Before the race: I woke up this morning as calm as a cucumber. I’ve been quite sick all week with tonsillitis. I took last two days off so I felt so fresh. I rode at 53 kilos and I’ve never felt so good in my life that light. ‘It’s a little intimidating (being the first woman), but to be honest it was great.

I had to share the room today with three males because their room was overflowing which has never happened before, and they were so calming— William Buick, Gerald Mosse and Ryan Moore.

[I] Could not have been surrounded by better jockeys, and everybody was so relaxed and that made me so relaxed and that really helped.


From the beginning: I wanted to get him out cleanly and as good as we could without stirring him up and he missed the start. (She decided against having a barrier attendant at the last minute)

I thought he’s so calm and relaxed, then he walked out of the barriers. I had to give him a click up to get into a position. I wanted to get a position behind Max Dynamite and Criterion.

Joe (Moreira, The United States) was looking to come across me, and I was like ‘no I’m sorry Joe I’m still in here.’. He thankfully held off and I got up in behind Max Dynamite. He (Prince Of Penzance) got a little bit keen. The speed was coming off around the first corner as it does. I really wanted to switch him off as I thought that was...


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