Melbourne Cup 2012: Aussies" big day out at the races


And you thought Ascot was a bit racy! Aussies' big day out at the Melbourne Cup
Charles and Camilla attended the prestigious horse racing event in Melbourne today as part of Diamond Jubilee tour

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UPDATED:

20:37 GMT, 6 November 2012

The Duchess of Cornwall declared the Melbourne Cup bigger than Ascot today after its huge crowds impressed the royal as she presented the winner’s trophy.

More than 105,000 people flocked to Flemington Racecourse in Melbourne for the two-mile race, which has become a social, cultural and sporting icon for Australia – and a large number of them were ladies dressed to impress.

But in time-honoured fashion, as the
champagne flowed and races were won – or lost – the racegoers became
ever-more dishevelled, with some kicking off their shoes to feel the
grass of the race track under their bare feet.

British racing meets have long had a reputation for getting a bit messy as the day develops, but the hedonistic Melbourne crowds showed the UK that they can party just as hard as both winners and losers sank gallons of booze and caused havoc around the racecourse.

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Big day out: Girls looking a little dishevelled after a few hours at the course

Big day out: Girls looking a little dishevelled after a few hours at the course

Cause to celebrate One racegoer looked in jubilant mood - perhaps having found fortune at the tote

Cause to celebrate One racegoer looked in jubilant mood – perhaps having found fortune at the tote

That's rubbish! One racegoer takes a tumble - and lands in a heap of discarded bottles and beer cans

That's rubbish! One racegoer takes a tumble – and lands in a heap of discarded bottles and beer cans

Horseplay: A couple take the weight off among the debris

Horseplay: A couple take the weight off among the debris

Whoops! Looks like the ground's a little soft

Whoops! Looks like the ground's a little soft

Others brandished full glasses or cans of beer and
swayed unsteadily on their feet, posing for photographers.

The scenes
echoed those of race tracks across Britain, from Aintree to Ascot, where
flocks of brightly dressed ladies put on a show each year – which sometimes happen to be less than ladylike.

And it just goes to show – however glamorous and refined racecourse guests are on arrival, there's a high chance that before the totes have closed for the day a good number will end up letting it all hang out.

Nonetheless, the day's racing was deemed a resounding success, with Amanda Elliott, vice chairman of the
Victoria Racing Club (VRC) which runs the Melbourne Cup, saying Camilla for one declared she was 'absolutely delighted' to be at the race course and 'could not believe' the crowds.

Flat out: A race goer

Flat out: A race goer “planks” after the last race at Flemington racecourse

Wipe out: It's tiring work having all this fun

Wipe out: It's tiring work having all this fun

Just say neigh: One horse gets distracted by the bar

Just say neigh: One horse gets distracted by the bar

Good fortune: One male racegoer strikes it lucky - even if it wasn't with the horses

Good fortune: One male racegoer strikes it lucky – even if it wasn't with the horses

Green and pleasant land: The grass at the course was littered with empty alcohol vessels

Green and pleasant land: The grass at the course was littered with empty alcohol vessels

Well-heeled: A race goer adjusts her shoes

Well-heeled: A race goer adjusts her shoes

Guess there's no hemline rules then! One racegoer with a very short dress enjoys a tipple at the race course

Guess there's no hemline rules then! One racegoer with a very short dress enjoys a tipple at the race course

Jumping for joy: A couple celebrate at the Melbourne Cup, the event seen as the highlight of the Spring Carnival

Jumping for joy: A couple celebrate at the Melbourne Cup, the event seen as the highlight of the Spring Carnival

The Melbourne Cup is one of the
richest flat races in the world with a total prize money pot of around
4 million and attracts riders, owners and horses from across the globe.

Billed as the race that stops a nation,
Camilla said it was a 'treat' for her and the Prince of Wales to sit in
the stands and watch some of the world’s best jockeys compete.

Camilla clearly enjoyed her day at
the races during her first visit to Australia and even had a flutter on
one of the favourites, Mount Athos, according to Ms Elliott.

She met the horse’s British rider
Ryan Moore, a three-times champion jockey, in the weighing room and also
in the field was Frankie Dettori who rode Cavalryman.

Ouch: Looks like somebody fell at the first furlong

Ouch: Looks like somebody fell at the first furlong

Pole position: One Race goer celebrates with a dance spurred on by her friends

Pole position: One Race goer celebrates with a dance spurred on by her friends

Fillies in their finery: Girls don summery frocks and fascinators for the occasion, which was deemed a huge success by organisers

Fillies
in their finery: Girls don summery frocks and fascinators for the
occasion, which was deemed a huge success by organisers

Should have gone Gangnam Style: A couple of male guest discard their blazers and demonstrate their best breakdancing moves

Should have gone Gangnam Style: A couple of male guest discard their blazers and demonstrate their best breakdancing moves

Party time! Revellers dance as a band plays music at Flemington Racecourse today

Party time! Revellers dance as a band plays music at Flemington Racecourse today

Bright and breezy: These colourful spectators managed to keep neat and tidy - all the better to show off their vivid creations

Bright and breezy: These colourful spectators managed to keep neat and tidy – all the better to show off their vivid creations

The Prince used a pair of binoculars
to watch the start of the race and as the horses thundered past the
stands for the first time a roar went up from the spectators.

A few minutes later they entered the
final furlongs and the punters screamed and shouted encouragement to
their jockeys. The unfancied Green Moon, ridden by Brett Prebble, raced
to the front and claimed the 152nd Melbourne Cup.

The Duchess presented the winner’s
trophy to Nick Williams, son of Casino mogul Lloyd Williams whose horse
had won him his fourth Cup.

Camilla reportedly said to Mr Williams about the trophy: 'Congratulations, It’s fantastic. I wish I was receiving it.'

Among the guests at the race course
was Camilla’s favourite milliner Philip Treacy, who said: 'It’s a great
honour to design hats for the future Queen of England and I’m very
excited to be here on a day when the royal couple are in Melbourne.'

For the Duchess he had created a stylish wide-brimmed cream hat that matched her flowing coat and dress by Bruce Oldfield.

Prince Charles and Camilla the Duchess of Cornwall greet the crowd after arriving to watch the running of the Melbourne Cup

Prince Charles and Camilla the Duchess of Cornwall greet the crowd after arriving to watch the running of the Melbourne Cup

Camilla took a style tip from the Queen by using a clear Fulton umbrella to ensure the crowds could still appreciate her impressive hat

Camilla took a style tip from the Queen by using a clear Fulton umbrella to ensure the crowds could still appreciate her impressive hat

Royal approval: Charles and Camilla Duchess of Cornwall attended the race meet as part of a Diamond Jubilee tour of Australia

Royal approval: Charles and Camilla Duchess of Cornwall attended the race meet as part of a Diamond Jubilee tour of Australia

The royal couple are on a six-day visit to Australia to commemorate the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II

The royal couple are on a six-day visit to Australia to commemorate the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II

The Prince used a pair of binoculars to watch the start of the race and as the horses thundered past the stands for the first time a roar went up from the spectators

The Prince used a pair of binoculars to watch the start of the race and as the horses thundered past the stands for the first time a roar went up from the spectators

Pop royalty: National sweetheart Delta Goodrem arrived in style in a fuchsia fairy-inspired dress

Mischa Barton poses at the Emirates marquee at the Melbourne Cup

Pop royalty Delta Goodrem arrived in style in a fuchsia fairy-inspired dress while actress Mischa Barton chose to make a statement with a towering hat

Shane Warne enjoyed a cigarette in sunshine on the VIP balcony with friends including James Packer and Erica Packer

Shane Warne enjoyed a cigarette in sunshine on the VIP balcony with friends including James Packer and Erica Packer

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Model Sophie Monk wearing an intricate hairband poses with flowers

Ronan Keating enjoyed the races with his new girlfriend Storm Uechtritz

Ronan Keating enjoyed the races with his new girlfriend Storm Uechtritz

Flamboyant businessman Darryn Lyons dresses to impress

Flamboyant businessman Darryn Lyons dresses to impress

Chef Marco Pierre White at the Melbourne Cup

Chef Marco Pierre White at the Melbourne Cup

Model Kris Smith at the Melbourne Cup

Model Kris Smith at the Melbourne Cup

Cricketer Shane Warne at the Melbourne Cup

Cricketer Shane Warne at the Melbourne Cup

Green Moon ridden by jockey Brett Pebble heads over the line followed by Fiorente during the Emirates Melbourne Cup

Green Moon ridden by jockey Brett Pebble heads over the line followed by Fiorente during the Emirates Melbourne Cup

The horses come around the bend in the Emirates Melbourne Cup during 2012 Melbourne Cup Day at Flemington Racecourse

The horses come around the bend in the Emirates Melbourne Cup during 2012 Melbourne Cup Day at Flemington Racecourse

VIDEO: Charles and Camilla go to the horses!…

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VIDEO: View from the ground. A sneak peek at the crowds at the Melbourne Cup

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