But for the Inglis family, founders of auctioneer house, Inglis it’s one of the biggest days of the year.
What do you do to prepare for Melbourne Cup?
It’s an early start. It’s such a big day, you’ve got to be conscious of the traffic because when you’ve got 100,000 people heading to the same venue – most around the same time – it can get pretty nasty. You need to get up and go early – sometimes it’s literally breakfast and out the door.
What do you get up to on the day?
This year it’s looking likely we will be lucky enough to have a runner in the Cup again with Youngstar. Either way we will be at Flemington for the day, myself, my wife, my daughters and plenty of family and friends. Youngstar raced in the Cup last year and we had such a great day, she came sixth which was such a huge thrill for everyone. Hopefully she can go even better in 2019!
How have your preparations and celebrations changed over the years?
Once upon a time at the Cup I always thought the Carpark as being much bigger. Not that it’s disappeared but the party has been more general and gravitated to different parts of the course. Back in the day there were say 900 car park spots, which were effectively 900 parties right next to each other. It was very fun. I guess due to crowd control and licensing etc, it doesn’t linger on like it used to.
What do you think Melbourne Cup brings to Australian culture?
It’s part of our sporting heritage. It links every small town, large city and every state together, probably more so than any other sport except perhaps cricket. Generally every town has a racetrack and they’re all tuned in at that one moment on the first Tuesday in November. There’s not many such occasions in sport or otherwise that does it.
What do you think Melbourne Cup brings to the small business community?
It’s an enormous boost to a lot of people that we perhaps wouldn’t think about until we pause and think. Everyone from flower sellers to sandwich makers to uber drivers to hairdressers, dress makers and on and on and on. It’s a great boost to the economy, not just in Melbourne.
Any comment on the current debate around Melbourne Cup?
It’s worth us all keeping in mind that it always comes back to the horse and our love of the horse. Everybody I know within the industry has a love of the horse fundamentally and nobody likes contemplating any cruelty or inhumane practices.
This post was written by Arthur Inglis, deputy chairman and 5th generation family member of Australia’s leading thoroughbred auctioneer, Inglis.