Melbourne Cup: how the race that stops a nation divides the nation

The pall of animal cruelty hangs over the parade, with cries of ‘horse racing kills’ vying with cheers for the Cup

On Monday, the race that stops a nation also, once again, managed to divide a nation. The annual Melbourne Cup parade brings the city to a standstill as tens of thousands line Swanston and Bourke streets to catch a glimpse of the 18-carat Cup, Fashions on the Field finalists, jockeys and trainers alike. Although outnumbered, the parade also notoriously draws a swathe of protesters, who compensate with megaphone-delivered messaging about the cruelty of the thoroughbred industry and the rhythmic chant of “horse racing kills”.

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