Challenge Stakes Race Information

The Challenge Stakes is a 1000 metre weight for age race run by the Australian Turf Club in early March. It is held at Randwick as part of the Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival.

  • Race Type: Group 2
  • Distance: 1000 metres
  • Conditions: Weight for age, 3YO & upwards
  • Track: Randwick Racecourse, Sydney, New South Wales
  • Prizemoney: $500,000
  • Date: Saturday 9 March 2024

Challenge Stakes Race History

See the 2024 Challenge Stakes Preview and results.

See the 2023 Challenge Stakes Preview and results.

The winner of the Challenge Stakes is exempt from the ballot for both the upcoming Group 1 The Galaxy and the Group 1 TJ Smith Stakes later in the autumn.

The race was first run in 1906 as a Principal Race at Randwick as a handicap over 6 furlongs (about 1200m) and was won by a horse called The Pet. From 1973 the distance was over 1000m. In 1987 it attained the current Group 2 status and from 2002 to 2006 it was held at Warwick Farm.

When Eduardo won in 2021 he set a new track record for the Randwick 1000m of 55.20 seconds, beating the previous time of 55.73 held by dual Everest winner Redzel. He won again in 2022 and nearly made it 3 in a row in 2023 when beaten by an eyelash in a photo finish with Passive Aggressive.

Challenge Stakes Facts

Last mare to win: Passive Aggressive (2024)

Last 3YO to win: C&G – Snitzel (2006); Filly – English (2016)

Multiple winners: Passive Aggressive (2023 & 2024); Eduardo (2021 & 2022); English (2016 & 2017); Star Of Florida (2003 & 2004); Cangronde (1997 & 1998); At Sea (1985, 1986 & 1987); Razor Sharp (1982, 1983 & 1984); Gay Gauntlet (1967 & 1969); San Domenico (1949 7 1950); Felbeam (1945 & 1946); High Caste (1940 & 1942); Golden Hop (1913 & 1914).

Fastest time (1000m): Eduardo (2021) 0:55:20 (Randwick 1000m track record)

Challenge Stakes & The Galaxy: Snippets (1988); Playbill (1972)

Challenge Stakes & TJ Smith Stakes: Ab Initio (1999)

Interesting trivia: Ron Quinton rode 4 winners as a jockey (At Sea 1985, Acamar 1980, Farala 1971, Dawn Boy 1968) then trained Easy Rocking to win in 2000.

Past winners of the Challenge Stakes

Winners of past Challenge Stakes include horses that come back to try and win again.

Year Winner Second Third
2024 Passive Aggressive Zapateo Aft Cabin
2023 Passive Aggressive Eduardo Giga Kick
2022 Eduardo Shelby Sixtysix Nature Strip
2021 Eduardo Nature Strip Bella Vella
2020 Nature Strip Redzel Jungle Edge
2019 Ball Of Muscle Redzel Viridine
2018 Redzel Jungle Edge Super Too
2017 English Redzel Supido
2016 English Kinglike Boss Lane
2015 Miracles Of Life Va Pensiero Rubick
2014 Villa Verde Snitzerland Famous Seamus
2013 Snitzerland Decision Time Howmuchdoyouloveme
2012 Rain Affair Satin Shoes Neeson
2011 Hay List Keen Commander Solar Charged
2010 De Lightning Ridge Dorf Command Stryker
2009 Olonana Hoystar Fantene
2008 Hurried Choice Keen Commander German Chocolate
2007 Spark Of Life Whoever Biscayne Bay
2006 Snitzel Spark of Life Media
2005 Impaler Snippetson Charge Forward
2004 Star Of Florida Mistegic Majestic Fiesta
2003 Star Of Florida Snowland Fair Embrace
2002 Bomber Bill Mistegic Ateates
2001 Pimpala Prince Ateates Notoire
2000 Easy Rocking Ab Initio Adam
1999 Ab Initio Rebel Rock Anthems
1998 Cangronde Lusty’s Bank Dane Ripper
1997 Cangronde Alfa Moss Rocket
1996 Light Up The World Christer Our Lance
1995 Moss Rocket Identikit Brawny Spirit
1994 Classic Magic Stormy Regent Legal Agent
1993 Spanish Mix Classic Magic Office
1992 All Archie Burrendah Boy Friend’s Venture
1991 Lightning Bend Dr. Grace Pagan Jest
1990 Show County Lightning Bend Sunalong Lass
1989 Groucho Paris Weekend Diamond Benny
1988 Snippets At Sea Lynn’s Love
1987 At Sea Gallery Level Merry Ruler
1986 At Sea Avon Angel Yallah Prince
1985 At Sea Feeling Fit Real Dream
1984 Razor Sharp Flash Doll Secret Romance
1983 Razor Sharp Manuan Flash Doll
1982 Razor Sharp Ubetido Calm Joe
1981 Steel Blade Proud Knight Pilgrims’ Way
1980 Acamer Goreham Zephyr Zip
1979 Christole Salaam Goreham
1978 Monreale Mistress Anne Captees
1977 Crimson Cloud Top Charger Sheil Sail
1976 River Ridge Sticks And Stones Skipper King
1975 Zephyr Bay Let’s Fly River Ridge
1974 War Island John’s Hope Pearl Powder
1973 Bounty Starplus Brisk Bay
1972 Playbill Cruisomatic King Time
1971 Farlara Dancing Lady Moonahoi
1970 Constant Rhythm
Biarritz Star
(dead heat 2nd) Sylvan Ridge
1969 Gay Gauntlet Black Onyx Wentwel
1968 Dawn Boy Prince Max Winged Beauty
1967 Gay Gauntlet Niolist Nullabor Prince
1966 Tar Girl Farnworth Valiant Lad
1965 Time And Tide Tipperary Star Selkirk
1964 The Tempest Ferguson Pardon Me
1963 Wenona Girl Kilshery Gili
1962 Rush Bye Prince Wilkes Top Form
1961 Gili Flash Time Endure
1960 Olympiad Front Cover Kaor
1959 Huntly Gay Coin Heavenly Star
1958 Dubbo Squander Lad High Spot
1957 My Kingdom Compound Singing Duke
1956 Apple Bay Alahvii Gay Vista
1955 Gay Vista Prince Cortauld Vistaed
1954 Tarien Nagpuni Karendi
1953 Apex La Hey Bankbrook
1952 True Leader Bue Flag Chastise
1951 Donegal Midwise Pantomine
1950 San Domenico High Jip Sheba
1949 San Domenico Mine Host Count Cosmo
1948 Gay Monarch Heroic Sovereign Earl Pentheus
1947 Brazier Gay King Despatch Case
1946 Felbeam Earl Pentheus Silverelda
1945 Felbeam Cooringwang Barnsley