Melbourne Cup 2016: Racehorse owner Aidan Shiels shows there's no shame in second

melbourne cup wrap sky news donut_00012604
melbourne cup wrap sky news donut_00012604


    Thrilling finish at the 2016 Melbourne Cup


Thrilling finish at the 2016 Melbourne Cup 02:06

Story highlights

  • Heartbreak City narrowly beaten by Almandin
  • But owner Aidan Shiels delights in second place

(CNN)Winning isn't everything — just ask Irishman Aidan Shiels, owner of racehorse Heartbreak City.

Despite agonizingly losing out to German gelding Almandin in a thrilling Melbourne Cup finale, Shiels celebrated as if he'd galloped to victory himself.
"But you only finished second ..." bewildered Channel Seven correspondent Neil Kearney ventures as he tentatively raises the microphone towards the ecstatic owner.
    "I don't care!" shrieks Shiels, nearly knocking over reporter with the sheer force of his exuberance. "I. Don't. Care."
    "But this is the Melbourne Cup," retorts Kearney, eyes wide, jaw to the floor, as Melbourne punters titter in the background.
    "We came here; we finished second!" screams Shiels. "We would have been happy with last!"
    No wonder Shiels was happy.
    Any quiver of disappointment he might have been feeling at coming second was quickly eclipsed by the realization that he and co-owners, Niall Reilly and Charlie Gavigan, had just pocketed a cool 85% of $900,000 — in other words, over $750,000.
    He had preceded his post-race TV interview by bellowing, "We'll take that boys! We'll take that!" before hugging Reilly and Gavigan, bystanders and anyone else that was close.

    How to turn $10 into $240,000

    If Kerrin McEvoy aboard Almandin crossed the line first, the Australian jockey wasn't the only winner on Tuesday.
    For one lucky Melbourne Cup punter, the "race that stops a nation" was the last day of their life as they'd known it, having turned a speculative $10 into almost a quarter of a million dollars.
    The betting website in question call the individual in question "an absolute genius" after they correctly predicted not just the race winner, but the order of the first four finishers.
    Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull wasn't so fortunate, having tipped third-placed Hartnell for victory, though he did tweet that he'd won the office sweep.
    The Melbourne Cup is Australia's richest and most famous race, with the nation transfixed as a field of international and local talent compete for the A$3.6 million (US$2.75 million) prize.