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Rain Lover in the Melbourne Cup

Rain Lover was another of our great champions. Winner of many big races including the Queen Elizabeth and the Chipping Norton Stakes, he is best remembered for winning two Melbourne Cups back-to-back in 1968 and 1969.

Check out what the son of Ribot achieved, and take a look at his two amazing Melbourne Cup victories.

About Rain Lover

Rain Lover was bred and owned by Clifford Reid. This is the same man whose Rainbird won the 1945 Melbourne Cup. Rain Lover was trained by Mick Robins.

Rain Lover went on to win two successive Melbourne Cups, a major achievement. As well as this, his career included wins in the St George Stakes twice, the Adelaide Cup, the Chipping Norton Stakes and the Underwood Stakes among others.

Heading to stud after retiring from the track, he was fairly successful. One of his progeny, Princess Veronica, won the Easter Cup.

Rain Lover’s Melbourne Cup Wins

Rain Lover was known in the 1960’s for being the tough sort. He tended to break well from the start and hit it hard before being able to grind it out at the end. He led the way in all his starts, including in two Melbourne Cups which he won back-to-back.

1968 Melbourne Cup

Rain Lover’s victory in the Melbourne Cup at Flemington in 1968 went down at the time as one of the roughest races in the history of the Cup. A fall and interference in running meant many a lost chance.

Our hero won by a huge eight-length margin from Fileur. At the time, a new course record was set of 3:10.10. Though this was the quickest Melbourne Cup by that point, Archer’s winning margin wasn’t to be beaten. His 1862 success by ten lengths survived as the best in that regard.

1969 Melbourne Cup

In 1969, connections of Rain Lover felt obliged to have another go at the Cup. Their five-year-old was given 60.5kg to carry and was allotted barrier 5. Rain Lover was to take on 22 rivals in front of a bumper crowd of 85,631.

Securing his second Cup, Rain Lover did it again under Jim Johnson. It was the jockey’s third win in the race. On this day, Rain Lover became the first back-to-back winner since Archer. He won the race at odds of 8/1.

There may have been some luck involved in this win. 1969 was the year the big favourite, Big Philou trained by Bart Cummings, was withdrawn 39 minutes before the off. He was the victim of a doping scandal at the time. We’ll never know how well he would have done had he started the race.

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