The race that stops a nation

The first Tuesday in November marks the day when all of Australia watch the Melbourne Cup horse race. It is a popular event where people dress up and attend Flemington Racecourse in Melbourne or parties around the country to watch the race live. It is the one race of the year where a large amount of people try their luck to bet on the winning horse.

Listen to this interview with Greg Miles, an on-course race caller at Flemington Racecourse and take notes as you listen for the first time.


Punters = people who attend a race and place a bet

A different kettle of fish = a phrase meaning something entirely different

Use your notes to see if you can answer these questions.

  1. When did Greg start working at Flemington?
  2. Make a list of the things a race caller has to do while calling a race.
  3. A good race caller has to be A________, E________, I________, O________, U________.
  4. How long does it take to prepare for a race?
  5. What are the 4 P’s of broadcasting?
  6. What equipment does he need?
  7. How does he feel about calling the Melbourne Cup?

Now listen for a second time and answer the questions.

1. 1989
2. add to the pictures, identify all the horses in the race, where the horses are in the race, how they are travelling in the race, who wins, who loses 
3. Accurate, Entertaining, Informative,  Original, Understood
4. a day
5. Preparation prevents poor performance.
6. a stand, binoculars, a swivel and a microphone 
7. so important, such a special race, he gets nervous

For more note-taking activities go to Scanning, Skimming and Note-taking.