Aurie’s Star Handicap Race Information

The Aurie’s Star Handicap is a 1200 metre open handicap race run by the Victoria Racing Club in early August. It is held at Flemington and is the first Group race of the racing season for Victoria.

  • Race Type: Group 3
  • Distance: 1200 metres
  • Conditions: Open handicap, 3YO & upwards
  • Track: Flemington Racecourse, Melbourne, Victoria
  • Prizemoney: $200,000
  • Date: Saturday 5 August 2023

Aurie’s Star Handicap Race History

See the 2023 Aurie’s Star Handicap Preview and results.

See the 2022 Aurie’s Star Handicap Preview and results.

See the 2021 Aurie’s Star Handicap Preview and results.

See the 2020 Aurie’s Star Handicap Preview and results.

As the first Group race of the new racing season in Victoria, this event has a level of importance. It tends to signify the emergence of the spring horses and is held to honour the memory of Aurie’s Star – one of the great horses to have raced at Flemington on the 1930’s.  It was first run in 1974 when it was a mid-week sprint. 1979 Melbourne Cup winner Hyperno had his first run of the season in the Aurie’s Star Handicap at Flemington in August 1979 and Bart Cummings also used it as a first run towards the Melbourne Cup with Rogan Josh twenty years later. In 2002 it was moved from the final Wednesday in August to the second Sunday in August and was the spring launch race for horses like Fields Of Omagh, Magical Miss, Roman Arch, Niconero, Valedictum and El Segundo.

It was an unlisted handicap before it became a Listed race in 2005, was moved to Saturday in 2006, then it was upgraded to a Group 3 race in 2010. It is held up the Flemington straight, apart from 2007 when it was held at Moonee Valley while Flemington was being renovated.

Who was Aurie’s Star ?

Aurie’s Star was foaled in 1932 by Stardrift from a mare called Aurie Anton. He was a sprint star who often carried massive weights and was trained in South Australia.

He won the 1937 Oakleigh Plate by 5 lengths in record time then in the autumn he won the Newmarket Handicap making him the fourth horse to complete the double. He won the Oakleigh Plate a second time in 1939 as a six-year-old and was the first horse to win that race more than once. Since then only Dual Choice (1972 & 1973) has done it.

In 1940 he won South Australia’s major sprint, the Goodwood Handicap carrying 10 stone (about 63.5 kg).

The next season he set a new record for the Flemington “straight six”of 1:08.25 carrying 64kg. That record stood until Gold Ace ran 1:07.5 in 1996.

Aurie’s Star died on April 30 1952 at the property he was retired to.

Aurie’s Star Handicap Facts

Last mare to win: Hula Wonder (1999)

Last 3YO to win: C&G – none ; Filly – none

Multiple winners: No horse has won the Aurie’s Star Handicap more than once

Fastest time (1200m): Shiraz (2015) 1:09:43

Leading jockeys: Damien Oliver with 5 wins (Home Of The Brave 2020, Voodoo Lad 2018, Shiraz 2015, Tiger Tees 2014. Mic Mac 2009)

Interesting trivia: In the past the race was often used by stayers starting their campaign but now tends to be targeted by sprinters, which is more fitting considering Aurie’s Star was a great sprinter.

Past winners of the Aurie’s Star Handicap

Winners of past Aurie’s Star Handicaps include horses that go on to win major spring races.

Year Winner Second Third
2023 It’sourtime Umgawa Chassis
2022 Sirius Suspect Stageman Shooting For Gold
2021 The Astrologist Romancer Too Good Too Hard
2020 Home Of The Brave Great Again Game Keeper
2019 So Si Bon Malibu Style Sesar
2018 Voodoo Lad Home Of The Brave Brave Song
2017 Hey Doc Cannyescent Grande Rosso
2016 Sooboog Dibayani Tashbeeh
2015 Shiraz Play Master Le Bonsir
2014 Tiger Tees Mr Chard Zamorar
2013 Broken Temple Of Boom Cavallo Nero
2012 Shanghai Warrior Golden Archer Zamorar
2011 Temple Of Boom Rekindled Interest Offenders
2010 Elusive Touch Leica Larrikin Beltrois
2009 Mic Mac All American El Segundo
2008 Grand Duels Stavka Valedictum
2007 Monet Rules Orange County El Segundo
2006 Bel Danoro El Segundo Apache Cat
2005 Niconero Valedictum Tszyu
2004 General Bayton Deprave Via De Lago
2003 Sports Naden Prince Rubiton
2002 Fields Of Omagh Pindi Ridge Gypsy Lad
2001 Sound the Alarm Slalom Le Zagaletta
2000 Roktzar Le Zagaletta Mystic Morse
1999 Hula Wonder Blazing Steel Mudejar
1998 Source Of Divorce Dylan Mighty Way
1997 Penghulu Rock You I Love Keiv
1996 Homestead Alcove Yights