Rekindling wins Melbourne Cup

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November 8, 2017 - 08:24 AM

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Joseph O'Brien has beaten his famous father to Melbourne Cup glory, training Rekindling to win Australia's greatest race.

In a father-and-son finish the younger O'Brien's Rekindling overhauled Johannes Vermeer, trained by his dad Aidan O'Brien, in the closing stages.

Max Dynamite completed an Irish trifecta in taking the minor placing.

Ridden by Sydney jockey Corey Brown, Rekindling saluted as a $15 chance to give owner Lloyd Williams a sixth win in the race.

"I chased the ride about six weeks ago and with a light weight I was a big chance to get on him," Brown said.

"It is so special, I have my family with me and the girls are old enough to come to the races and enjoy it. I am lost for words."

Brown won the 2009 Melbourne Cup on Shocking and has worked to re-establish himself in Australia after an extended stay in Singapore.

Coming from midfield as Johannes Vermeer ($13), also jointly owned by Williams, was being hailed the winner, Rekindling rallied when it mattered to edge clear.

Max Dynamite ($20), runner-up in 2015, ran bravely for trainer Willie Mullins to finish in the placings again.

The Irish trio were part of an 11-horse overseas contingent taking their place in the Melbourne Cup field.

Big Duke was the first Australian-trained horse across the line, finishing fourth.

O'Brien, 24, immediately made a telephone call to his father Aidan who wasn't at Flemington because of Breeders' Cup commitments in America.

"I rang him, he is delighted. Unbelievable," the former jockey said.

"I'm just so thankful to Lloyd and to Nick (Williams).

"They suggested to bring him down and that he'd have a good chance in the race and his prep went really good, and Corey gave him an unbelievable ride.

"And I'm just so delighted for everyone and all the lads at home and the lads that are down here with him have done an unbelievable job."

Williams, who is also part-owner of Johannes Vermeer, had an association with six Melbourne Cup runners.

English stayer Marmelo and last year's winner Almandin started equal favourites at $7.

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