Damien Oliver has etched his name into the history books by breaking the record for most number of winners for a jockey during Melbourne Cup carnivals at Flemington.
Oliver’s two wins during last year’s four-meeting Melbourne Cup carnival took him level with the mark of 72 winners set by fellow Australian Hall Of Fame member Bobby Lewis.
And in the second race of this year’s carnival on Victoria Derby Day on Saturday, Oliver bettered that long-standing mark with victory on the Danny O’Brien-trained filly Miami Bound in the Group Two Wakeful Stakes.
The 47-year-old said he wasn’t actually thinking about the record until the post-race interview but said it was a great honour.
“It’s a huge thrill,” Oliver said.
“They’ve been racing here for over 150 years and there’s been some amazing jockeys over that period of time.
“So I feel pretty honoured to think that you’ve been the most successful jockey in over 150 years.”
Oliver’s 73 Cup carnival winners during a career spanning three decades have included three Melbourne Cups on Doriemus (1995), Media Puzzle (2002) and Fiorente (2013).
Lewis’ tally included four Melbourne Cups on The Victory (1902), Patrobas (1915), Artilleryman (1919) and Trivalve (1927).
“There’s so many memorable moments at this carnival and it’s what the whole racing industry really looks forward to,” Oliver said.
“It’s a great week and we all look forward to a great week’s racing.”
Oliver had equalled the record last year on another horse from the O’Brien stable, Order Of Command, and the trainer praised the jockey’s feat on Saturday.
“We’ve had a great relationship over many years so it’s special that he has broken it on one of mine,” O’Brien said.
“It’s an incredible record. The Flemington carnival is what racing is all about. So to have that on your resume that no-one has ever ridden more winners than you, that’s a pretty good one to have.”