Originally named the H.E. Tancred Stakes, The BMW Stakes has also been known as the Tancred Cup and the Mercedes Classic, and was first won by Maidenhead in 1963. Initially a 12 furlong race until 1972, The BMW is the only Group 1 weight-for-age 2400m race in Australia. With Tie The Knot (1999-2000) and Octagonal (1996-97) as the only double winners of the race, it is clear that the staying event is not for the light hearted. Many great horses have tried to win this race and have failed however there are two particular which have gone on from The BMW to have an extraordinary racing season. After winning the BMW Stakes in 1973, Apollo Eleven went on to win Sydney Cup, Queen Elizabeth Stakes, Chipping Norton Stakes and Auckland Cup. Racing legend Makybe Diva went on to win the Memsie Stakes, Turnbull Stakes, Cox Plate and the Melbourne Cup after her 2005 victory.
The race was held as a 10 furlong event in 1964 and remained a Principal race until 1979 when it then became a Group 1 race. Dominated by colts and geldings, the race has only had seven mares cross the finish line first. Tuesday Joy was the most recent winning mare in 2008 followed by Makybe Diva (2005), Ethereal (2002), Miltak (1994), My Blue Denim (1981), Bright Shadow (1970), and Maidenhead (1963).
The BMW Records
Fastest Winning Time (excluding 1964): 2:25.78 – Grand Zulu (2004).
Slowest Winning Time: 2:38.12 – Sydeston (1990).
Most Wins By A Jockey: Four – Derren Beadman (1996, 2003, 2008 and 2009) and Mick Dittman (1977, 1985, 1990 and 1993).
Most Wins By A Trainer: Four – John R. Hawkes (1996, 1997, 2001 and 2003).
BMW Stakes Winners
|2000||Tie the Knot|
|1999||Tie the Knot|
|1998||Might and Power|
|1989||Our Poetic Prince|
|1973||Apollo Eleven (NZ)|