Darley Classic

The Darley Classic is one of two Group 1 features that are held on the final day of Flemington’s renowned Melbourne Cup Carnival, Emirates Stakes Day. Previously known as the VRC Sprint Classic and before that the Patinack Farm Classic, the Darley Classic is a thrilling 1200m sprint.

Conducted on the first Saturday of November, Emirates Stakes Day is the closing carnival meeting and is a jam packed day full of family fun and racing excitement. The showcase event of the day is the marquee race, the $1 million Emirates Stakes. There are three other group status events at the meeting including the Darley Classic, which was moved to Emirates Stakes Day in 2007.

Raced under weight-for-age conditions by horses aged three-years-old and over, the Darley Classic is a 1200m sprint worth a generous $500,000 and attracts many of the country’s finest gallopers. It was elevated to a Group 1 status event in 2007.

As the ninth leg in the prestigious Global Sprint Challenge, the Darley Classic is recognised as one of the premier sprint events in the world. The event has been known as a variety of different names, inaugurating as the Flying Stakes. Other titles included the Emirates Classic, Lexus Classic, Patinack Farm Classic, VRC Sprint Classic and the Age Classic. The race was changed to its current title of the VRC Sprint Classic in 2013 and then to the Darley Classic in 2014.

The Darley Classic and Emirates Stakes Day follow three other top quality race days at the Flemington Cup Carnival, which starts with Victoria Derby Day, Melbourne Cup Day, and Crown Oaks Day.

Darley Classic Fast Facts

  • Location: Flemington Racecourse
  • Date: First Saturday in November
  • Status: Group 1
  • Distance: 1200m
  • Prizemoney: $500,000
  • Conditions: Weight-for-age
  • Inaugurated: 1868

Darley Classic Previous Winners

Year Winner Jockey Trainer Time
2014 Terravista Hugh Bowman Joe Pride 1:08.8
2013 Buffering Damian Browne Robert Heathcote 1:10.4
2012 Mental Kerrin McEvoy Peter Snowden 1:09.04
2011 Black Caviar Luke Nolen Peter G Moody 1:08.3
2010 Black Caviar Ben Melham Peter G Moody 1:07.96
2009 All Silent Nick Hall Grahame Begg 1:08.7
2008 Swick (NZ) Michael Rodd Bart Cummings 1:11.0
2007 Miss Andretti Craig Newitt Lee Freedman 1:08.9
2006 Dance Hero Chris Munce Gai Waterhouse 1:08.6
2005 Glamour Puss Steven King Danny O’Brien 1:08.9
2004 Takeover Target Jay Ford Joe Janiak 1:08.2
2003 Ancient Song Scott Seamer Peter Moody 1:11.0
2002 Rubitano Nash Rawiller Brian Mayfield-Smith 1:07.1
2001 Sudurka Danny Nikolic Brian Mayfield-Smith 1:08.4
2000 Easy Rocking Jim Cassidy Ron Quinton 1:10.0