Tragedy in Melbourne Cup death

Melbourne's Spring Festival which includes the Melbourne Cup takes place at Flemington Racecourse

Melbourne's Spring Festival which includes the Melbourne Cup takes place at Flemington Racecourse

Online sports-betting sites crashed nationwide in the lead-up to the Melbourne Cup, the busiest betting event of the year.

Irish horse The Cliffsofmoher fractured his right shoulder when running down the straight the first time at Flemington in Melbourne on Tuesday.

The son of Galileo was owned by Nick Williams, son of horseracing icon Lloyd Williams.

The Aidan O'Brien-trained horse suffered a fractured shoulder during today's race and had to be euthanised, Racing Victoria's executive general manager - integrity services, Jamie Stier, said in a statement.

"The horse received immediate veterinary care, however it was unable to be saved due to the nature of the injury sustained".

Racing Victoria said these incidents occurred "infrequently" and insisted Victoria has one of the "best safety records in the world in racing".

RSPCA Australia says The Cliffsofmoher is the sixth horse to die during the Melbourne Cup carnival since 2013.

Yucatan, who finished 11th, pulled up lame in a near foreleg - a minor injury - but was also not in any further danger.

"It's very sad. It could have been worse, Ryan could have taken a fall off him, someone could have been seriously injured".

The Cliffsofmoher is not the first horse to be put down at the Melbourne Cup.

In 2014 two horses Admire Rakti and Araldo were put down following the race.

Parties galore are also in store across Perth, some of the biggest being held at Market Grounds, Henry Summer, The Stables, The Bach Club and, of course, Crown Perth, which previous year hosted 24,000 WA racing fans on Cup day and expects even more today.

The horse clipped the heels of another runner and injured a foreleg when falling as the field turned for home.

The area was drenched with more than 46mm of rain falling on Flemington before 2.30pm (NZT), prompting fears jockeys and horses were at risk of injury.

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