This year’s running of the Melbourne Cup will be like no other — with no crowds present while Melbourne continues to flatten the curve of coronavirus cases.
But the race day will still go ahead and will be covered by Network Ten for the second year since re-gaining the rights to cover the “race that stops a nation”.
Flashback to 1990, and TV Week‘s preview of the Melbourne Cup, which normally features soapie stars’ fashion choices, took a different turn by featuring stars from Ten’s two comedy shows at the time.
Let The Blood Run Free stars Lynda Gibson (as Matron Dorothy Conniving-Bitch) and David Swann (Dr Richard Lovechild) were joined by The Comedy Company’s Mark Mitchell (as Con The Fruiterer), Russell Gilbert and Tracy Harvey.
Going back further, to 1960, and for the first time viewers in Sydney were able to see the Melbourne Cup live, in a joint effort between all three Sydney channels. The Victorian Racing Club dictated that live TV coverage of the Melbourne Cup was not allowed in Victoria. It was not until 1978 that the rule was lifted.
TV Times did, however, still give Melbourne readers a glimpse at some Cup fashions from the stars. Featured in its one-page fashion preview were Corinne Kerby (ABC), June Finlayson (Seven) and Joy Fountain (Nine).
The 2020 Melbourne Cup Carnival — Lexus Melbourne Cup Day. Tuesday 3 November, 10.00am (AEDST), Network Ten / WIN.
Source: TV Times, 27 October 1960. TV Week, 3 November 1990.