The Melbourne Cup well and truly had a different feel about it at trackside this year, with the race that stops the nation running behind closed doors for the first time in 2020 amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

But, as usual, Tuesday’s event was celebrated in style in Narrabri with several venues including the Narrabri RSL Club and the Crossroads Hotel hosting social functions which were attended by an abundance of locals who were dressed up to the nines. The RSL’s function was a charity fundraiser for Friendly Faces Helping Hands.

The Lloyd Williams-owned Twilight Payment won the 3200-metre annual race to earn Irish trainer Joseph O’Brien his second Melbourne Cup crown. The eight-year-old gelding ran a near-perfect race, leading almost the entire way.

That victory created a lifetime memory for jockey Jye McNeil who was riding in his first Melbourne Cup on the day.

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