Punter Turns a $2 Melbourne Cup Bet into $100,000 in Winnings

Ben H / 10 November 2023

A lucky punter from Western Australia has won big on the Melbourne Cup by getting the first four right. The unlikely winning quartet helped him turn a $2 bet into more than $100,000 in winnings and was the biggest, but not the only success story at the Melbourne Cup.

Without A Fight, an outsider with the bookies before the start of the race, won the $8 million handicap at Flemington on Tuesday, ridden by back-to-back Melbourne Cup winner Mark Zahra. The Irish gelding was victorious at the Caulfield Cup only a couple of weeks ago too.

A Lucky First Four Mystery Bet

The double win was the first Cup double in more than two decades. It was particularly enjoyable for the lucky bettor, who backed the $7.50 underdog and, in many ways, outdid and outperformed the Irish import.

The punter’s first four mystery bet also included Soulcombe, who returned $3.40 for a place bet, $151 long-shot pick Sheraz, and Geelong Cup runner-up Ashrun, who paid $26 for the win. That was the order in which the four horses crossed the finishing line, and the bettor was $100,763 richer come the end of the race.

The Western Australian TAB bettor was one of several big winners, with one punter staking $100,000 on Without A Fight when the horse was priced at $9, while another lucky betting enthusiast placed a cool $80,000 bet on the Caulfield Cup hero, a wager that won him $600,000.

Professional Bettor Steve Bradley Lost $320,000 on Vauban

However, when underdogs win or place, that is never a good result for most bettors, and there were many punters left empty-handed after backing bookies’ favourite Vauban who finished 14th. The Willie Mullins-trained six-year-old gelding was the first pick for many punters, and Mullins thought it was the best chance they ever had and will ever have.

One bettor who backed Vauban with a massive $320,000 bet was professional punter Steve Bradley, who was hoping to win $2 million. Bookmaker Warren Woodcock said that Bradley created “chaos” and “went completely nuts,” as the big bets were flying around. Those big bets included a $200,000 wager on the favourite at $5 and a $230,000 bet when the horse was at $4.80.

A Five-Leg Million-Dollar Multi Knocked by the Favourite

Returning to those who have a lot to be happy about, several TAB bettors backed Without A Fight with $10,000 and $15,500 bets at odds of $6, while two punters staked $20,000 and $22,500 on odds of $7.50, pocketing $150,000 and $168,750 each.

However, not everyone who backed Without A Fight was lucky. One Ladbrokes punter was left in disbelief when he saw his five-leg multi knocked by the favourite Vauban. The bettor got four of his five picks right and would have won $989,120 if Vauban hadn’t let him down.

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Ben H
Ben Harris is the Communications Manager for KRUZEY, an AFL expert, and writer. He has one daughter that he loves dearly and four children's books... [Read full bio]

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