The Emirates Melbourne Cup 2011 at the Flemington Race Course was one of the most gripping and entertaining horse races for some time and resulted in suspense after a sprint to the line led to a photo-finish. It took several minutes to decide the eventual winner but it was jockey Christophe Lemaire’s horse Dunaden that triumphed to retain the French hold on the $6.2 million Melbourne Cup, just beating Red Cadeaux ridden by Michael Rodd.
This Melbourne Cup will be remembered for a long time as it had probably the closest finish of its 151-year history. A nose-to-nose sprint led to some nailbiting moments among the 100,000-strong crowd to decide the first two places and as Lemaire and Rodd stood waiting for the judgement they embraced and wished each other good luck according to Ian Ransom of Reuters. When the winner was declared Lemaire gestured in disbelief before raising his arm in the air while Rodd bowed his head in regret.
As for the rest of the field it was a further length and a quarter until Lucas Cranach made it to third and then Americain, the favorite, took fourth. In fifth was Manighar, sixth Lost in the Moment, Fox Hunt seventh and Niwot eighth. There were a total of 23 runners in the field. Winner Dunaden is trained by Frenchman Mikel Delzangles and owned by Sheikh Fahad al Thani, a relative newcomer to the sport.