Thousands of punters donned their the best black and white dresses and suits and flocked to the races on Derby Day, the premier event of the Melbourne Cup Carnival.
Racing enthusiasts took to Flemington Racecourse on Saturday for one of the biggest races of the year ahead of Tuesday’s Melbourne Cup.
The dress code for Derby Day was the traditional black and white with spectators dressed to the nines for a day of action on and off the track.
Out of the race! A group of women are all smiles at Derby Day
It’s done for the day: a group of women enjoy a moment of rest at the end of Derby Day
Spectators gather as a ‘jockey’ gives his final Derby performance
Two ladies smile at the camera while taking their seats at Derby Day
And we all fall: the runners settled comfortably on the grass after the end of the derby
Who needs a drink? Two racing enthusiasts celebrated Derby Day with a bottle
The $2 million Group 1 Penfolds Victoria Derby comprised nine races at various group levels, including three Group 1 races.
It’s the Victorian capital’s chance to show off its chic side, at least until the champagne and beer start flowing.
The glamorous attendees looked considerably tired as they exited the event after a long day of sun and fun.
While some headed home after a long day, others stayed on the trail or headed into town to party late into the night.
With bright colors excluded from the theme of the day, many spectators used ruffles, cutouts and unique silhouettes to stand out from the crowd.
Afternoon Nap: Two well-dressed ladies take a break from the action on and off the track
A group of women return home after a long day of fun and sun
A group cheers on Derby Day, the first event of the Melbourne Cup Carnival
Thousands of racing fans descended on Melbourne’s Flemington Racecourse for Derby Day on Saturday.
Racing fans celebrated a Derby Day win
Two spectators seen leaving Flemington Racecourse after Derby Day
Seagulls flocked around the course to pick up leftover food as spectators left Flemington
A stylish racing enthusiast perfectly paired her accessories with the traditional black and white Derby theme.
The day was accompanied by the $10 million Golden Eagle event at Rosehill Racecourse in Sydney.
The two events had a total of $22 million in prize money up for grabs.
Saturday’s headline event was the Victoria Derby, with three-year-old horses battling to finish the 2,500m sprint in first place.
The $2 million Group 1 Penfolds Victoria Derby features nine races at various group levels, including three Group 1 races.
Sore feet tomorrow: a participant left her heels when leaving the course
Crowd favorite Riff Rocket, accompanied by jockey James McDonald, won the valuable Derby with a photo finish as spectators celebrated a big day.
At the end of the races, the painful heels came off!
Seagulls watched the trash left by spectators as the last ones prepared to return home
“First held in 1855, the Penfolds Victoria Derby brings together the most talented young Australians looking to add their names to a star-studded roll of honour,” says the Victoria Racing Club.
“The pinnacle of three-year-old sprinters lines up in the $2 million Group One Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m) – won last year by In Secret.
“The $1 million TAB Empire Rose Stakes (1600m) for fillies and mares will crown the next queen of the turf.”
Riff Rocket with jockey James McDonald won the highly touted Victoria Derby as the pre-race favorite after a photo finish.
Apulia was desperately unlucky to finish second after rushing in the final stride, with Sunsets securing third place.
Riff Rocket’s victory was master trainer Chris Waller’s third Victoria Derby, with McDonald winning yet another Group One.
Cheers! A group of participants celebrates the Derby
Police helped move crowds from Flemington Racecourse after Derby Day ended
With bright colors left out of the day’s theme, many spectators used ruffles and fun silhouettes to stand out from the crowd.
Thousands of spectators leave Flemington Racecourse at the end of Derby Day
Strike a pose: two women enjoy a free moment
The next Melbourne Cup Carnival event will be Australia’s most iconic race, the Melbourne Cup.
“The ten-race card vibrates through a day filled with the best in fashion, food and entertainment as spectators of all ages create memories at Flemington that will last a lifetime,” says the Victoria Racing Club.
Looking forward to seeing you here! A group of women meets at Derby Day
Smiling for the camera: Race fans document one of the Derby’s lesser-known ‘races’
Two spectators meet in front of the camera during Derby Day
A group of lovely ladies are all smiles for Derby Day
Participants began leaving Flemington Racecourse, leaving behind mountains of rubbish, shortly after the final race.
One well-dressed attendee decided to ditch her heels at the end of the day.