A Melbourne Cup sweep is a lottery where entrants are allotted a horse running in the Melbourne Cup and prize winners are determined by the horse’s placing in the race. Check this page for some of our most common Melbourne Cup sweep questions.
The prize money is determined by how much money is collected from entrants. There is no minimum or maximum entry fee but the general costs are $1, $2 or $5 per entry. All of the money collected in the sweep must be returned as prizes and the total value of prizes distributed cannot be more than $5000.
There are no set guidelines on how the winners are determined. The most common method is to give prizes to the horses that run first, second, third and last past in the race. However, this can be varied and prizes can be paid on other placing's. It is important that entrants are made aware of the prize list before the sweep commences.
You may need to consider how to deal with scratched horses. You may decide to go 'all-in' which means that no refund is given to a person whose horse is scratched from the race. Alternatively, you may decide to pay a refund and alter the prize list. Both methods are acceptable provided entrants are advised.
A Melbourne Cup sweep can be conducted anywhere. They are usually run in the workplace or at a licensed premises. It is important that the organiser of the sweep cannot retain any money for costs or expenses. All the money collected in the sweep must be returned as prizes.
This information does not apply to the Calcutta Sweepstake which can be done by a club under a permit issued by the Minister for Racing. Any club intending to conduct a Calcutta Sweepstake should contact the Department of Justice and Regulation on (03) 8684 1907 or visit Calcutta sweepstakes applications and approvals to obtain a permit application form.
A sweep can be conducted on horse races other than the Melbourne Cup. For example, a sweep can be run on the Caulfield Cup, W.S. CoxPlate or any of the country cups in regional Victoria.