Melbourne Cup: The race that stops two nations

(AAP)
(AAP)

The Melbourne Cup is the ritziest and most renowned event on Australia and New Zealand's horse racing calendar - so what's the big deal?

Well it all started back in 1861, and quickly became one of the fastest-growing events on the sporting and social scene.

It is known as the richest race in Australia, with the 2016 Cup-winning owners taking home $3.8 million.

The Cup is so popular that even World War I and II failed to stop it in its tracks, unlike other sporting events at the time.

Plus, who can resist the betting? The TAB claims the Melbourne Cup is one of their most lucrative days of the year, raking in more than $10 million from busy punters in New Zealans, and over a billion dollars world wide.

Then there's the fashion - and photos of people who've consumed way too much bubbles gracing the pages of newspapers, social media, and television.

But emergency teams are prepared for that this year thanks to the help of a device, nicknamed the 'Drunk Chair'.

And if your horse takes the win and you celebrate a little too hard tonight, just be grateful you're not part of the official Flemington clean-up crew - who spend up to a week dealing to the trash revellers leave behind.

Newshub.

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