Cox Plate 2022 Preview: Field, Odds, Winner Trends & Tips

Anamoe is the favourite to clinch the Cox Plate when the country’s leading gallopers meet for the greatest two minutes in sport this weekend.

The Godolphin colt has rattled off consecutive Group 1 victories in the Winx Stakes, the George Main Stakes and the Might and Power this spring. He is surging with momentum right now, but champion jockey James McDonald insists that Anamoe still has “another gear to give”.

That sounds ominous for his rivals, but Anamoe will need to be at his best to see off talented rivals like Zaaki, El Bodegon and Gold Trip. It promises to be a fascinating race, and you can bet on the action at TopSport.

Our Cox Plate guide delves into the race history, rounds up the leading contenders, provides key winner trends and offers our top tip for the race.


Cox Plate Background and History

The Cox Plate is one of the big three races, along with the Melbourne Cup and the Caulfield Cup. It is run over a distance of 2,040m at Moonee Valley in late October each year. The race is named after W.S. Cox, a pioneer of Australian thoroughbred racing, who founded the Moonee Valley Racing Club.

It was first held in 1922, when the purse was just £1,000. It is now one of the world’s richest races, with a $5 million prize pool. It takes place on the left-handed turf track and it is run under weight for age conditions.


Cox Plate Notable Winners

There have been many famous winners of the Cox Plate over the years, but some names really stand out:

  • Nightmarch | Won both the Xoc Plate and the Melbourne Cup in 1929
  • Phar Lap | One of the most famous racehorses of all-time, who won back-to-back Cox Plates in 1930 and 1931, along with the 1930 Melbourne Cup, before conquering America.
  • Flight | The second two-time Cox Plate winner, following in Phar Lap’s footsteps.
  • Rising Fast | The only horse to win the Cox Plate, Melbourne Cup and Caulfield Cup in the same year.
  • Tobin Bronze | A legendary racehorse from the 1960s, who won two Cox Plates and the Caulfield Cup, with a record of 12 wins, three second and two thirds in 16 weight for age starts.
  • Saintly | The third horse to win the Cox Plate and the Melbourne Cup.
  • Might and Power | Won both Cups in 1997 and the Cox Plate the following year.
  • Sunline | Winner of the Cox Plate in 1999 and 2000, along with the Hong Kong Mile and the Waikato Sprint.
  • Northerly | Followed on from Sunline by winning the 2001 and 2002 Cox Plates, along with the 2002 Caulfield Cup.
  • Fields | Won the Cox Plate in 2003 and then triumphed again in 2006.
  • So You Think | The Australian Champion Three-Year-Old, with a Timeform rating of 133, who won the Cox Plate in 2009 and 2010 before landing big races in Europe.
  • Makybe Diva | The famous three-time Melbourne Cup winner also landed the Cox Plate in 2005.
  • Winx | Arguably the greatest racehorse of all time, who won a record-breaking four Cox Plates.


Cox Plate 2021 Winner

Irish raider State Of Rest prevailed in a thrilling duel with Anamoe down the Moonee Valley straight to clinch the Cox Plate last year. There was a degree of controversy, as rider Craig Williams claimed interference after he was hampered aboard Anamoe. However, the stewards ultimately determined the State Of Rest – who shifted his ground toward the rail, affecting his rival – did not interfere enough to change the result.

Zaaki was the early favourite for the race, but he was scratched due to an elevated temperature. Anamoe and Verry Elleegant then started as the joint favourites, but they could only finish second and third respectively, as the Joseph O’Brien-trained State Of Rest won by a long head.


Cox Plate Time & Date

The Cox Plate will take place at 17:10 on Saturday 22 October. It will be the ninth race on the card at Moonee Valley. The track is currently rated Good, although rain is forecast on Friday and Saturday.


Cox Plate Leading Contenders



The James Cumming-trained galloper has notched four Group 1 wins since he was beaten by a nose in this race last year. He is only the third horse to win six G1 races for Godolphin, and he is the hot favourite to make it seven in the Cox Plate this weekend.

His performance in the Might And Power was encouraging, as he looked in trouble at the home turn and still managed to get the job done. He landed a perfect draw in Barrier 4, and it does not matter if the ground is good or soft, as he can handle both. Anamoe got the better of Zaaki and I’m Thunderstruck over the same distance on his last start, which also bodes well.



Zaaki was the favourite for last year’s Cox Plate before a late scratching. He bounced back by winning the G1 Mackinnon Stakes, and he clinched the All Star Mile – beating I’m Thunderstruck by a length-and-a-half – and the Hollindale Stakes in the autumn.

Annabel Neasham’s gelding returned to action by winning the G2 Tramway Stakes at the start of the spring campaign, before finishing third in the Underwood. He was on course to win the Might And Power, only for Anamoe and I’m Thunderstruck to surge past him as the finish line approached. He will come out of Barrier 1, making him a likely frontrunner, but whether he can hold off Anamoe and I’m Thunderstruck is another matter entirely.


El Bodegon 

El Bodegon is a Chris Waller import who tasted Group 1 success over the same distance at Saint Cloud last year. Imports have a strong record in this race, with State Of Rest, Sir Dragonet and Lys Gracieux all saluting in the past three years. He should enjoy the trip, and he loves soft ground, so the rain could play into his hands. He has also drawn Barrier 8, which yielded last year’s winner.


I’m Thunderstruck 

The Mick Price and Michael Kent-trained runner has drawn Barrier 10 for the Cox Plate. He is yet to win over this trip, but he came close to beating Anamoe over 2000m last time out, while he also finished ahead of Zaaki, Mr Brightside and Alligator Blood.


Gold Trip 

Ciaron Maher and David Eustace’s import has not quite hit the heights expected of him since arriving in Australia, but he ran well to finish second in last week’s G1 Caulfield Cup. He now faces a quick turnaround, but he could enjoy a drop back to 2040m. After a long break, Gold Trip’s fitness is continually improving with each race, and he has also placed in two-thirds of his starts on soft tracks.


Mr Brightside 

Mr Brightside finished two-and-a-quarter lengths behind Anamoe when running fourth in the Might And Power earlier this month. He has a 100% record at the Valley, and he secured a dominant victory in the G2 Feehan Stakes there. However, he is unproven over this distance, and he has drawn Barrier 11, which looks awkward.


Cox Plate Odds

Horse Fixed Win Fixed Place
Anamoe $2.35 $1.3
Zaaki $4 $1.60
El Bodegon $7.5 $2.1
I’m Thunderstruck $13 $3.1
Gold Trip $15 $3.4
Mr Brightside $17 $3.7
Alligator Blood $21 $4.2
Mo’unga $26 $5
Laws Of Indices $34 $6
Young Werther $51 $8
Maximal $71 $9.5
Profondo $71 $9.5


Cox Plate Prize Money 

Prize money for the Cox Plate is $5 million. The winner takes home $3 million, with $750,000 going to the runner up, $375,000 for third, $250,000 for fourth, $200,000 for fifth, $100,000 for sixth and seventh and $75,000 apiece for eighth, ninth and 10th.


Cox Plate Winner Trends 

  • Favourites in the Cox Plate have an overall win rate of 41%. All favourites starting at less than $2.00 have a 70% win rate.
  • Last year’s joint favourites, Anamoe and Verry Elleegant, finished second and third respectively, while Russian Camelot was third in 2020. The previous five favourites all won – Winx in 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018, and Lys Gracieux in 2019. The last favourite to finish out of the places was Dundeel in 2013.
  • Since 2000, three-year-olds have secured three victories in the Cox Plate. Four-year-olds have won seven times, five-year-olds have won three times and six-year-olds have won seven times. We have also seen two seven-year-old winners (Makybe Diva and Winx) and a nine-year-old (Fields Of Omagh).
  • Runners drawn between barriers 3 and 7 have won the race in 14 of the past 21 years. Last year’s winner, State Of Rest, sprung from Barrier 8.


Cox Plate Tips

Everything is set up perfectly for Anamoe to win this race. He is full of momentum, he will relish the trip and he will have no problem with the ground. He has landed a perfect barrier draw, and he has already beaten his key rivals over a similar distance. I’m Thunderstruck to place also looks appealing after his strong showing in the Might And Power.


**Odds quoted are accurate at the time of writing but are subject to change.