Kyabram Free Press
Mongrels back for more
Kevin Andrews and his Melbourne Cup Calcutta syndicate are known as the Mongrels — the eight-time winners of the annual Kyabram Club event wear the title as a badge of honour.
The syndicate still has nine members, but only five were at the event on Monday evening — the night before the staging of the most coveted horse race in the country.
Kevin has attended every Calcutta event at the Kyabram Club, with his syndicate, which was formed in 1978, winning the top prize on eight occasions.
There were 26 syndicates at Monday evening’s Calcutta, the Mongrels sitting comfortably at the front of the room.
It was, however, not to be their night, as they drew only one horse in the initial draw of the 24 runners.
It didn’t stop Kevin reminiscing on his previous victories, five of those coming between 1991 and 1999.
Thirty years ago the Mongrels picked up not only their first win — but pocketed first, second and third prize when Let’s Elope saluted.
They also combined the horses they drew in the Calcutta and picked up almost $4000 from collecting the Cup trifecta prize.
Their other winners in the 1990s were Subzero (1992), Jeune (1994), Doriemus (1995) and Rogan Josh (1999). Making up the eight winning years were Delta Blues (2006), Shocking (2009) and Dunaden (2011).
The Mongrels’ 2021 Calcutta horse, Floating Artist, went for $1800 (the syndicate paying half of that figure).
Also at the event was eight-time Group Onewinning jockey Brendan Clements, who has lived on the Kyabram property he bought 15 years ago for the past 12 months.
Clements rode in eight Melbourne Cups, his best finish being fifth aboard Arwon, who had won the Cup two years earlier.