The Moët and Chandon Spring Champion Stakes is an illustrious event that showcases the finest three-year-old thoroughbreds in Australia.
More than just a race, it’s a celebration of style, sophistication, and glamour that has become a seasonal social event.
History of The Spring Champion Stakes
The Spring Champion Stakes is a Group 1 race run under Set Weights conditions for three-year-olds at the esteemed Randwick Racecourse.
Established in 1971 with Gay Icarus as its inaugural winner, the race covers a distance of 2000m.
When the AJC Derby moved to the Autumn season, the Spring Champion Stakes became its Spring equivalent at Randwick.
Robbie Dolan on Profondo wins race eight at the Moët and Chandon Spring Champion Stakes at Royal Randwick Racecourse in 2021
The Moët and Chandon Spring Champion Stakes is one of the biggest days on the Sydney racing calendar
Traditionally held on Epsom day, the race was later rescheduled to better accommodate Derby-bound stayers.
It is now run a fortnight later, making it a week prior to the Derby.
Initially known as the Australasian Champion Stakes, the race adopted its current name after the transition to the Spring season.
The race has always been at 2000m, with the exception of the 2001 running on the Kensington track, which was at 1800m and won by Viking Ruler.
In 1979, the Spring Champion Stakes was upgraded from a Principal Race to a Group 1 race, reflecting its prestige and importance in the racing calendar.
Notable Winners and Records
Several horses have achieved the remarkable feat of winning both the Spring Champion Stakes and the Victoria Derby, including Stylish Century, Nothin’ Leica Dane, Monaco Consul, and Ace High.
Others have claimed the Spring Champion Stakes and the ATC Australian Derby (Autumn) double, such as Kingston Town, Beau Zam, Fairway, Universal Prince, and Dundeel.
In 2016, Yankee Rose made history as the first filly to win the Spring Champion. This feat was later replicated by Maid Of Heaven in 2018, and again by Montefilia in 2020, who also became the first Flight Stakes winner to achieve the double.
The 2021 Spring Champion winner was Profondo, a horse sired by Deep Impact, who claimed victory at just his third start.
The 2022 champion was Sharp ‘N’ Smart, who triumphed over Elliptical and She’s Extreme.
The Spring Champion Stakes Today
As of 2023, the Spring Champion Stakes boasted a prize pool of AUD2 million, underscoring its status as one of Australia’s premier racing events.
It continues to attract top-tier talent, with notable winners including Montefilia, Shadow Hero, Ace High, Yankee Rose, and many more.
The Moët and Chandon Spring Champion Stakes is not just a race; it’s a testament to the skill, endurance, and spirit of thoroughbred racing.
It’s a celebration of tradition and excellence that continues to captivate audiences and inspire competitors.
One of the newer races on the calendar, this high octane event will get hearts pumping.
The Invitation is a prestigious race conducted by the Australian Turf Club at Randwick, specifically designed for fillies and mares under set weights and penalties conditions.
Covering a distance of 1400m, the race was inaugurated in 2021 with Icebath as its first winner.
The Invitation quickly rose to prominence, becoming the richest race for fillies and mares in Australia.
It features a select field of 12 horses, all personally invited to participate. As of 2023, the prize money for The Invitation was $2million.
Despite her impressive performances at G1 level, Icebath, the victor of the inaugural race, remarkably did not win another group race even six months after her victory in The Invitation.
2023 Moët and Chandon Spring Champion Stakes
Where it is raced: Royal Randwick Racecourse
Moët and Chandon Spring Champion Stakes, 4:00pm (AEDT)
The Invitation: 4:45pm (AEDT)
How to watch: Channel 7, Sky Racing 1 (channel 526 on Foxtel)
Moët and Chandon Spring Champion Stakes: Raf Attack, Tom Kitten, Ganbare, Kintyre, Glad You Think So, Port Lockroy, Ravello (NZ), Cap Ferrat, Long Genes, Medatsu (NZ), Ramble On, Tutta La Vita.
The Invitation: Alcohol Free (IRE), Espiona, Royal Merchant, Ruthless Dame (NZ), Opal Ridge, Roots, Magic Time, Parisal, Olentia, Banana Queen, Ausbred Flirt, Dalchini, Razeta, Russian Conquest