Canberra Cup celebrates its 80th year

The Canberra Cup will celebrate its 80th anniversary on John McGrath Auto Group Black Opal Stakes day this Sunday and the trophy will be delivered to the Mounting Yard via a horse drawn carriage, not dissimilar to a royal entry by the Queen at Ascot.

The Canberra Cup, valued at $200,000 in prize money is a Listed race run over 2000m.

The Canberra Cup was first run in 1926 on the old Acton racecourse that now lies under the waters of Lake Burley Griffin.

There were no runnings of the Canberra Cup from 1930 to 1935 due to the depression and during the war years from 1941 to 1945. The Canberra Cup was also cancelled in 1947 and 2006 (track reconstruction) and 2011 when it was moved from its traditional spring date to join the Black Opal Stakes program in the Autumn.

There have been four dual winners of the Canberra Cup (Spec, Crazy Notion, Reingard, Macknuckle) but Super Impose, the eight-time Group One winner of two Doncaster Miles, two Epsom Handicaps and the WS Cox Plate, ranks as the most famous winner in 1992.

The TAB Canberra Cup and the John McGrath Auto Group Black Opal trophy will arrive by a “4 in hand” carriage named after Terry Snow’s equestrian centre “Willinga” driven by Byron McIntyre from Yass.  McIntyre is a competitive carriage driver with the horses specifically bred with both Thoroughbred and Cleveland Bay bloodlines.  The trophies together are valued at $7,000.