Manikato Stakes 2024

Manikato Stakes

Preview, Trends & Analysis

The Rundown

The Manikato Stakes is the feature Moonee Valley sprint event of the racing calendar held on a Friday night under the lights. 

The race is part of the two-day Cox Plate carnival and represents the beginning of massive back-to-back cards at the Valley.

Originally run in 1968 and won by Winfreux, the Manikato Stakes has attracted some of the best ever sprinters we have seen on Australian turf. 

Run at Group 1 Weight-for-Age with a prize money purse worth $1,000,000, it is reserved for those sprinters who dare try to conquer the quirky Moonee Valley which has brought many a horse undone. 

The race is named after that the legend racehorse that was Manikato. 

The Bob Hoysted-trained galloper won the race twice in his famous career and had the race named in honour in 1984. 

From 1968-78 the Manikato Stakes was categorised as a Principal Race before gaining Group 2 status from 1979-1988 and then, ultimately, Group 1 status from 1989 onwards. 

The Famous Winners and Record Results

Let us start with the namesake of the race. 


A versatile horse who took his talents from the sprint course to the mile course. 

He won the Manikato Stakes, or as it was known from 1968-83, the Freeway Stakes in the years 1979 and 1982. 

Redoute’s Choice (1999) brought home the bacon with victory in the Manikato Stakes as we headed into the turn of the century. 

The mighty mare that was Sunline, much like Manikato, also highlighted her versatility with a Manikato Stakes victory in 2000 as she sailed towards a Cox Plate triumph. 

She is only one of four horses to have won also won the Cox Plate; Strawberry Road (1983), Rubiton (1987), Dane Ripper (1997). 

Hey Doc (2017, 2020) joined four other horses, including Manikato himself, to have won the race twice. 

The Tony McEvoy-trained runner also holds the record time run in the race with 2020 success set in 1:08:76. 

Chautauqua, known as ‘The Grey Flash’ pounced on his rivals and dashed away with the 2015 edition under the guidance of his regular jockey Tommy Berry. 

The Statistics

The Recent Winners








Tony Gollan

Daniel Moor



Hey Doc

Ton & Calvin McEvoy

Luke Currie



Loving Gaby

Ciaron Maher & Dave Eustace 

Craig Williams



Brave Smash

Darren Weir

Hugh Bowman



Hey Doc 

Tony McEvoy 

Luke Currie 



Rebel Dane

Gary Portelli

Ben Melham 




Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes

Tommy Berry



Lankan Rupee

Mick Price

Craig Newitt 




Robert Heathcote

Damian Browne



Sea Siren 

John O’Shea 

Jim Cassidy




Peter Snowden

Kerrin McEvoy 



Hay List 

John McNair

Glyn Schofield


The Questions

When is the Manikato Stakes held?

The Manikato Stakes will be run and won on the 22nd of October at Moonee Valley the day before Cox Plate day.

Are there any other races on the day?
  • Yes.
  • The VOBIS Gold Star (1500m), Sprinters Country Cup Final (1200m) and the 55-second Challenge (975m) are some of the supporting races on the Manikato Stakes race card. 
How do I bet on the Manikato Stakes?
  • Punch in to your browser and find your home for all your different types of ways to bet not only on the Manikato Stakes but every race across Australia.  
Where do the runners of the Manikato Stakes race next?

Most horses who run in the Manikato Stakes will either head towards the Darley Sprint Classic (1200m) up the straight at Flemington or usually head for the spelling paddock. 

How To Bet On Manikato Stakes?

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