Richest horse races in the world – read on to find out which races have the biggest prize purses in the industry.
Horse racing is a very popular sport in certain parts of the world. Whilst it’s popularity cannot compete with the likes of football and cricket, there are still millions of fans that tune in for large horse racing events each year.
You could argue that horse racing is a sport for the wealthy. Horses are expensive animals that only wealthy families can afford to keep.
Whilst horse racing fans come from all kinds of backgrounds, this certainly stands true when you look at some of the richest horse races throughout the year. There’s a ridiculous amount of prize money offered on some events.
There’s no doubt, a lot of this money comes from event sponsors in the gambling sector. As horse racing is one of the most popular sports for punters to bet on, the two go hand in hand.
So what are the richest horse races in the world?
1. Dubai World Cup – £9.6 million
Generally speaking, anything to do with Dubai involves stupendous amounts of money and the Dubai World Cup is no different. With the largest prize purse in the world of horse racing, this event easily takes the top spot in our list.
The event takes place each year in late March at the Meydan Racecourse in Dubai. The 2019 winner, Thunder Snow, took home a cool 7.2 million USD, with the overall prize purse an enormous 12 million USD.
For those of you who are wondering who owned the winning horse, it was actually the ruler of Dubai himself, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum!
Spectators at the event have the option of staying in the five-star hotel located right beside the racecourse. However, the price of getting into the grandstand alone can be as much as $1,200 so you’ll need to save up…
2. Breeders’ Cup Classic – £4.8 million
Whilst nothing can compare to the whole spectacle that is the Dubai World Cup, we move to the US and the Breeders’ Cup Classic.
Second, on our list of the richest horse races, the Breeders’ Cup takes place annually in the US. The event is held in late October or early November and takes place at different racetracks each year.
The 2018 instalment was watched by an impressive 70,000 spectators in Louisville, Kentucky and had a prize purse of 6 million USD.
It’s expected the 2019 prize purse will remain at 6 million USD, with the winning team taking home 3.3 million USD.
3. Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe – £4.5 million
With a prize purse of £4.5 million, the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe is an incredibly popular horse racing event in France that makes it third onto our list of richest horse races.
Taking place annually on the first Sunday of October, the event is held at Longchamp Racecourse in Paris.
The defending champion, Enable, won the 2018 race. Franke Dettori was the winning jockey on both occasions.
4. Melbourne Cup – £4.45 million
Dating back to 1861, the Melbourne Cup is the most popular and famous horse racing event in Australia. You guessed it, the event takes place in Melbourne in early November.
The horse race takes place at the Flemington Racecourse in Melbourne, Victoria. The 2018 winning horse, Cross Counter took home $4 million from a total prize pot of $7.3 million.
Furthermore, the 2019 prize purse is will rise to $8 million equating to £4.45 GBP.
The event is a popular day out for many Australians and it is renowned for its party atmosphere. More than 100,000 spectators attend the race each year.
5. Kentucky Derby – £2.4 million
The Kentucky Derby is an annual horse race that takes place in Louisville, Kentucky. The event takes place on the first Saturday of May at Churchill Downs Racecourse and concludes the two week long Kentucky Derby Festival.
Over 150,000 spectators watch the event live within the grandstands.
The 2019 winner Country House, took home a cool $1.86 million from a total race prize purse of $3 million.
6. The Epsom Derby – £1.6 million
The oldest horserace on our list, dating back to 1780, the Epsom Derby has the largest purse for a horse race in the UK. It’s a small £1.6 million when you compare it to others on the list.
The event takes place at the Epsom Downs Racecourse in Surrey, London on the first Saturday of June each year.
The winning horse in 2019, Anthony Van Dyck took home just under £1 million in prize money.
7. The Grand National – £1 million
One of the most popular and famous horse races of the year, the Grand National takes place at Aintree Racecourse in early April. However, the prize money has remained relatively low when compared to others on our list.
The famous steeplechase concludes an annual three-day festival at Aintree.
The 2019 winning team took home just £561,000. Whilst this is still a life-changing amount of money, it’s not on the same level as other rich horse races around the world.
Richest horse races in the world
Overall, there is a ridiculous amount of money in this sport and the richest horse races just act as proof.
However, to attract the best horses and jockeys in order to make great racing, events are required to pay out large sums of money. As long as the racing remains a great spectacle, I think the prize purses are acceptable.
Which is your favourite horse race in the world? Let me know by leaving a comment below right now.