Last-minute replacement jockey Christophe Lemaire has won the $6.2 million Melbourne Cup on French horse Dunaden by the narrowest of margins from English stayer Red Cadeaux.
Lemaire only arrived in Australia yesterday on standby for Melbourne jockey Craig Williams who was unsuccessful in appealing a suspension that prevented him from riding in the Cup.
"This is unbelievable. Craig is a very good friend of mine," an emotional Lemaire said.
It was the second year in a row that a French horse had won our greatest race after Americain was victorious last year.
Red Cadeaux ridden by 2007 winning jockey Michael Rodd hit the lead close to the winning post but was unable to withstand the flying Dunaden.
A photo was required to determine the winner with Dunaden winning by the narrowest of margins.
Lucas Cranach, ridden by Corey Brown, was third while Americain finished powerfully to place fourth.
Modun came last.
Dunaden's trainer Mike Delzangles, who was having his first runner in the race, said he was still shaking - "it's amazing".
"I feel for Craig [Williams] and have to thank him because he has been a real help,'' he said.
with Andrew Garvey
1st - 3 - DUNADEN - Christophe Lemaire
2nd - 12 - RED CADEAUX - Michael Rodd
3rd - 9 - LUCAS CRANACH - Corey Brown
4th - 1 - AMERICAIN - Gerald Mosse
5th - 6 - MANIGHAR - Damien Oliver
6th - 15 - LOST IN THE MOMENT - William Buick
7th - 8 - FOX HUNT - Silvestre De Sousa
8th - 23 - NIWOT - Dean Yendall
9th - 7 - UNUSUAL SUSPECT - Brad Rawiller
10th - 17 - AT FIRST SIGHT - Steven King
11th - 11 - PRECEDENCE - Darren Beadman
12th - 4 - DRUNKEN SAILOR - Dwayne Dunn
13th - 21 - THE VERMINATOR - Craig Newitt
14th - 22 - TULLAMORE - Chris Munce
15th - 18 - MOYENNE CORNICHE - Brett Prebble
16th - 19 - SAPTAPADI - Chris Symons
17th - 24 - OLDER THAN TIME - Tim Clark
18th - 13 - HAWK ISLAND - Glyn Schofield
19th - 14 - ILLO - Jim Cassidy
20th - 2 - JUKEBOX JURY - Neil Callan
21st - 20 - SHAMROCKER - Luke Nolen
22nd - 5 - GLASS HARMONIUM - Lisa Cropp
23rd - 16 - Kerrin McEvoy