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Irish smiling on Melbourne Cup

Monday 31 October 2011 | Published in Regional


The Cook Islands has exported its Melbourne Cup icon, with one man and his green suit set to light up the Cup carnival once more.

Our little green man, Paddy Lynch the 78-year-old husband of Luina and mother of local brothers Paul and Patrick has become a Melbourne Cup icon of sorts.

His smart suit, strong Irish accent and twinkling eyes have made Lynch famous on the trackside scene at Melbourne, to which he has made an annual pilgrimage since 1954.

Punters looking for an edge have all too often turned to Lynch in a fit of desperation, rubbing their tickets on his suit in the hope that the luck of the Irish might bless their bets.

The suit has certainly proved lucky for Lynch, often acting as a magnet for the fillies of the two-legged variety and the camera lenses of the Australian media.

Sporters looking to back the odds of Lynch turning up on a newsreel, photo gallery or broadsheet somewhere would find good odds in their favour.

Over the years, Lynch has featured in Channel 9s coverage of the day as well as a host of Australian newspapers from across the great brown land.

While there are no Irish-trained runners in Mondays Melbourne Cup race, there are many entries with Irish connections.

The English-trained Jukebox Jury won the Irish St Leger at The Curragh in September.

Red Cadeaux, also in Melbourne, ran on gamely to finish third in that race.

Green Moon, among the favourites but not guaranteed a start in the race, was bred in Ireland.

Mourayan also started its career in Ireland before switching to Australian racing in 2009.

Modun, to be ridden by champion jockey Kerrin McEvoy, was bred at Ballymacoll Stud in Meath and is now owned by the Godolphin group.

Another Irish-bred runner, Bauer, represents a good outside chance after a solid run in the Geelong Cup last week.

So in all, it seems that Lynch may have a host of horses to back when the gates open at Flemington at 6pm, Cook Islands time.

Perhaps luck has a little to do with it, but a big field will also help.