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Melbourne Cup 2019: Why trifectas are your best last-minute bet to win big

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Why trifectas are your best last-minute bet to win big on the Melbourne Cup – and how a $1 wager can pay $61,867

  • Trifectas provide one of the best chances to win big in Melbourne Cup betting
  • Dividends are raised by huge pools, large fields and horses at long odds placing
  • The record Melbourne Cup trifecta of $61,867.90 for $1 bet was paid out in 1993 
  • Last year’s trifecta paid $2,479.40, 2017’s was $3,025.10 and 2016 was $1,541.30

Melbourne Cup betting can seem like entering a lottery and the depth of the field in this year’s running makes picking a winner look harder than usual.

But it is still possible for once-a-year-punters to cash in on the great race without knowing anything about form or much about betting.

Exotic bets – particularly trifectas – provide a chance to win big in the Cup without making a huge investment.

A trifecta involves picking the first three horses to finish the race and a small outlay can result in a payout of thousands – sometimes tens of thousands – of dollars.

Melbourne Cup betting can seem like a lottery and the depth of the field in this year's running makes picking a winner look harder than usual. But it is still possible for once-a-year-punters to cash in on the great race without knowing anything about form or much about betting

Melbourne Cup betting can seem like a lottery and the depth of the field in this year’s running makes picking a winner look harder than usual. But it is still possible for once-a-year-punters to cash in on the great race without knowing anything about form or much about betting

Exotic bets - particularly trifectas - provide a chance to win big in the Cup without making a huge investment. Racegoers are pictured celebrating at the 2015 Flemington event

Exotic bets – particularly trifectas – provide a chance to win big in the Cup without making a huge investment. Racegoers are pictured celebrating at the 2015 Flemington event

A trifecta involves picking the first three horses to finish the race and a small outlay can result in a payout of thousands - sometimes tens of thousands - of dollars. Punters are pictured celebrating at last year's Melbourne Cup

A trifecta involves picking the first three horses to finish the race and a small outlay can result in a payout of thousands – sometimes tens of thousands – of dollars. Punters are pictured celebrating at last year’s Melbourne Cup

Melbourne Cup trifectas pay more than for most races because of the large field of horses and huge betting pools inflated by occasional punters.

There is usually at least one horse at long odds among the first three place-getters and favourites are often not among them. 

Picking a winner of the $7,750,000 race is notoriously difficult and this year good judges seem to be having more trouble than usual. 

Only a small number of those placing bets can be expected to pick the result of an event involving 24 horses run over 3,200m. 

Last year’s Cup trifecta paid $2,479.40 when Cross Counter ($15) was first past the post followed by Marmelo, which started at $12 and Prince Of Aran at $23.

The record Melbourne Cup trifecta of $61,867.90 was paid out in 1993 when Vintage Crop won the race, ahead of Te Akau Nick and Mercator.

In 2017 the trifecta paid $3,025.10, 2016’s result was $1,541.30 and 2015 returned a whopping $26,045.00.

There are three popular types of trifectas: standard, boxed and standout.

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A strandard trifecta means picking the first three runners across the line in correct order. To receive the full trifecta dividend you would have to spend only $1.

A box trifecta means you can have the winner and two place-getters finish in any order. 

Melbourne Cup trifectas pay more than for most races because of the large field of horses and huge betting pools inflated by occasional punters. There is usually at least one horse at long odds among the first three place-getters and favourites are often not among them

Melbourne Cup trifectas pay more than for most races because of the large field of horses and huge betting pools inflated by occasional punters. There is usually at least one horse at long odds among the first three place-getters and favourites are often not among them

Picking a winner of the $7,750,000 race is notoriously difficult and this year good judges seem to be having more trouble than usual. Only a small number of those placing bets can be expected to pick the result of an event involving 24 horses run over 3,200m

Picking a winner of the $7,750,000 race is notoriously difficult and this year good judges seem to be having more trouble than usual. Only a small number of those placing bets can be expected to pick the result of an event involving 24 horses run over 3,200m

If you were to pick three horses – you can pick more – there would be six possible combinations. To receive 100 per cent of the trifecta dividend you would have to invest $6. 

Picking four horses would cost $24 and five $60. You can also elect to choose more than three horses but invest less money for a smaller percentage of the dividend.

Box trifectas are popular because it is almost impossible to pick the three first horses in the correct order. 

A standout trifecta involves picking one horse to win and two others to finish second and third in either order.

Taking a mystery trifecta means the three or more horses are picked automatically.  

Trifectas offer big dividends but be aware there are 12,144 possible combinations for first, second and third in a field of 24 horses.

In 2015 you could have covered every trifecta outcome for an outlay of $12,144 and still more than doubled your money. 

Kerrin McEvoy crosses the line aboard Cross Counter to win last year's Melbourne Cup

Kerrin McEvoy crosses the line aboard Cross Counter to win last year’s Melbourne Cup 

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