The hangovers of Melbourne Cup racegoers may have subsided – but the global criticism has not.
Media organisations from across the world have taken the chance to stick the boot into Aussies – and our culture – after news of the disgusting state Flemington was left in after Tuesday’s big race quickly spread.
The condition of the track, in addition to the drunken antics of several people, gave organisations like the BBC, The Sun, International Business Times and US sports website Deadspin all the ammunition they needed.
It was Deadspin who were most critical, with author Billy Haisley writing that the “insane white people sh*t” Americans see at the Kentucky Derby – a famous race of their own – is completely outdone at the Melbourne Cup.
“It’s not until you see these photos of the Melbourne Cup, Australia’s most drunken and depraved horse racing event, that you can really understand just how out of hand the whites can get,” he writes.
“Also like the Kentucky Derby – both of which follow the proud British tradition of getting equal parts dolled and f***ed up at horse races – it is a perfect event for young and old alike to don their finest of outfits and guzzle copious amounts of alcohol.
“The entire state of Victoria even gets the day off from work, since Melbourne Cup Day has been decreed an official local holiday.”
Like Deadspin, British tabloid The Sun was amused that Aussies went to all the effort of getting dressed up, only to disgrace themselves.
“Beautifully dressed men and women in the crowd were seen face down on the concrete,” it said.
“[They were also] collapsed underneath hedges, asleep on the grass and tumbling over bins at the litter-covered Flemington racecourse.”
The BBC was not as savage in its assessment, but did offer comment on “the usual drunken antics” of the Cup.
“Of course, no Melbourne Cup would be complete without the customary snaps of race-goers entertaining themselves after a few too many glasses of champagne,” its report read.
Police said nine people were arrested and 78 punters evicted from the racecourse this year.
Meanwhile, the International Business Times offered up a theory on the term given to the Melbourne Cup.
“The Melbourne Cup is known as ‘the race that stops the nation’,” it wrote.
“Perhaps this is because revellers are so hungover the next day that they can’t move.”
IBT added: “Stewards had to step in to break up brawls, and several punters were carried away in ambulances.”
English cricketer Kevin Pietersen told The New Daily that Aussie racegoers were much “looser” than what he had experienced in England.
“I was at Royal Ascot a few years back and that I think was a little more civilised,” he said.
“This seems a bit looser.”
Despite the global headlines, Victoria Police told The New Daily that most of the crowd were well behaved.
Drama in Western Australia too
It wasn’t just Melbourne where fans were causing chaos.
One man at Perth’s Ascot Racecourse invaded the track and ran down the home straight during their Melbourne Cup Day race meet on Tuesday.
The shirtless invader jumped the fence and ran down the track but was no match for favourite Variation in Race 9.
Big effort the bloke down the outside rail, last Ascot. pic.twitter.com/Sg6Q5AvuX3
— Julian Holsman (@Upuspupus) November 1, 2016