Like many horse-related events, The Champions is a high-profile occasion during the Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival, which attracts thousands of racegoers every year. Though the Melbourne Cup is the main focus for horseracing in Australia, the Sydney scene is also pretty popular with racegoers.
The Champions Races
The Champions is an event that takes place over the first and second Saturday of April each year. It began in 2014 and combined previous standalone Group 1 races into a two-day event. It is held at the Royal Randwick Racecourse near the Sydney CBD.
Here is a brief rundown of the Group 1 races that take place during The Champions that may help when gathering The Championships racing tips.
The first day of The Champions consists of four Group 1 races which are the Doncaster Mile, the TJ Smith Stakes, the Australian Derby and the Sires Produce Stakes.
The Doncaster Mile is the first race to kick off The Champions. It is an open handicap race with a distance of 1600 metres and a total prize purse of $3,000,000. It was first to run in 1866, with Cascadian winning the most recent one in 2021.
TJ Smith Stakes
TJ Smith Stakes is a weight-for-age race run over a distance of 1200 metres and has total prize money of $2,500,000. It was first to run in 1997 as the Endeavour Stakes, but the name was changed in 1999 to honour esteemed thoroughbred trainer Thomas John (T.J.) Smith, who won 33 racing titles in Sydney.
ATC Australian Derby
ATC Australian Derby has a total prize pool of $2,000,000 and is run at a distance of 2400 metres at set weights. It is set for three-year-old thoroughbreds and was last won by Explosive Jack. It was first won by Kyogle at the inaugural event in 1861.
ATC Sire’s Produce Stakes
ATC Sire’s Produce Stakes is run over a distance of 1400 metres and worth $1,000,000 in prize money. This race is for two-year-olds at set weights and was inaugurated in 1867 where it was won by Glencoe. Anamoe was the latest to win in 2021.
The second day of The Champions also consists of four Group 1 races which are the Queen Elizabeth Stakes, the Sydney Cup, the Australian Oaks and the Queen of the Turf Stakes.
ATC Queen Elizabeth Stakes
ATC Queen Elizabeth Stakes is weight-for-age and is run over a distance of 2000 metres and is worth $4,000,000. This makes it the third richest weight-for-age race in Australia. The most recent winner is Addeybb who won in 2021 and 2020.
The Sydney Cup
The Sydney Cup was first to run in 1862 when it was known as the Jockey Club Handicap. It is a 3200m open handicap race offering a grand prize of $2,000,000. The latest horse to win the race was Selino in 2021. Although this event never got as big as the Melbourne Cup, it is still a favourite among racegoers.
ATC Australian Oaks
The ATC Australian Oaks race runs for a distance of 2400 metres and is for three-year-old fillies at set weights with a one-million-dollar prize.
Queen of the Turf Stakes
The Queen of the Turf Stakes race is weight-for-age for fillies and mares and is run over a distance of 1600 metres. It boasts a total of $1,000,00 in prize money and was recently won by Nettoyer in 2021.
Whether you attend only one day or both, The Champions offers plenty of excitement for racing fans.