Melbourne Cup 2018: Winners are grinners

Cross Counter has ended two decades of Melbourne Cup frustration for the powerful global stable Godolphin by winning Australia’s greatest horse race.

On a rain-affected track and ridden by Kerrin McEvoy for trainer Charlie Appleby, Cross Counter defeated Marmelo and A Prince Of Arran in an all-northern hemisphere finish.

One of the most influential racing operations in the world, the Sheikh Mohammed-backed Godolphin stable has been trying to win the Melbourne Cup since 1998.

Starting a $9 chance, Cross Counter settled in the second half of the field but producing a stirring finish to overhaul Marmelo ($12) who was initially being hailed the winner for Hugh Bowman.

McEvoy now has three Melbourne Cups after winning the race on Brew as an apprentice in 2000 and Almandin in 2016.

"I was back a bit further than what I wanted," McEvoy said.

"I had to go my own way and we were full of running. I thought mate, is this happening again? And yeah look, I'm just lucky I can ride light on these lovely stayers prepared unbelievably well by Godolphin and Charlie Appleby."

The race was marred by the Aidan O'Brien-trained The Cliffsofmoher breaking down as the field passed the winning post the first time.

MELBOURNE CUP FINISHING ORDER:

Jockey Aiden O'Brien on The CliffsofMoher is assisted by a race steward. Photo: AAP, Dan Himbrechts

Jockey Aiden O'Brien on The CliffsofMoher is assisted by a race steward. Photo: AAP, Dan Himbrechts

  1. Cross Counter
  2. Marmelo
  3. A Prince Of Arran
  4. Finche
  5. Rostropovich
  6. Youngstar
  7. Sir Charles Road
  8. Best Solution
  9. Muntahaa
  10. Ventura Storm
  11. Yucatan
  12. Nakeeta
  13. Zacada
  14. Chestnut Coat
  15. Vengeur Masque
  16. Magic Circle
  17. Who Shot Thebarman
  18. Sound Check
  19. Runaway
  20. Ace High
  21. Auvray
  22. Avilius
  23. Red Cardinal

Failed to finish: The Cliffsofmoher