Thursday 17 October 2019

Green Moon rises over Melbourne Cup

Laura Butler Melbourne

'Green Moon' took home the coveted trophy, which was presented by Prince Charles' wife, Camilla, who was accompanied by her husband.

More than €250m was spent on Australia's biggest betting day of the year. And although the event attracts a global audience, Ireland took centre stage this year.

The event sponsor Emirates 'Birdcage' marquee was fitted out to resemble Dublin for its 250 guests, complete with a replica bar of Trinity College's Long Room, a James Joyce impersonator and pints of Guinness.

Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce, who is originally from Tallaght, told the Irish Independent of the significance of international airlines promoting Ireland down under.

"Qantas and Emirates are pulling together in the world's biggest alliance, which means Qantas is coming all the way to Dublin on a flight through Dubai for the first time next April.

In a touching tribute, an outlet with a traditional frontage named the 'Jim Stynes Sweet Shop' was erected in the raceground in memory of the late Dublin-born footballer, who passed away in March.

Three of the Emirates' six hostesses chosen to welcome punters to the track come from Ireland. They included Anne Marie Woods (24), from Donegal, Emma Allen (29), from Cork, and Bridget Higgins (29), from Galway.

Entertainment was provided by the Christine Ayre Irish School of Dancing, a Melbourne based troupe that became the Irish World Dancing champions in April.

Lead dancer Liam Ayres (28), whose grandparents were from Co Meath,had been performing with 'Riverdance' until recently. The Melbourne Cup Carnival runs until this Saturday.

Irish Independent

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