Every year, the nation grinds to a halt at 3pm on the first Tuesday in November as all eyes focus on Flemington Racecourse.

The Victorian race track is home to the richest race on turf, with 24 runners taking off on a 3200-metre run to determine who will win Australia's richest race.

From Phar Lap to Makybe Diva, some of Australia's most famous racehorses have taken out the famous gallop.

But the record for the fastest-run Melbourne Cup in history hasn't changed hands since 1990 when Kingston Rule, trained by the legendary Bart Cummins and ridden by Darren Beadman, ran a time of 3:16:30.

The record has only come close to falling twice since then, in 2002 when Media Puzzle was just 67 hundredths of a second away, and in 2020 when Twilight Payment was just over a second short.

Here are the ten fastest Melbourne Cups in history.

1990: Kingston Rule, 3:16:30 (jockey: Darren Beadman, trainer: Bart Cummings)

2002: Media Puzzle, 3:16:97 (jockey: Damien Oliver, trainer: Dermot K Weld)

1989: Tawriffic, 3:17:10 (jockey: Shane Dye, trainer: Lee Fredman)

2020: Twilight Payment, 3:17:34 (jockey: Jye McNeil, trainer: Joseph Patrick O'Brien)
2014: Protectionist, 3:17:71 (jockey: Ryan Moore, trainer: Andreas Wohler)

1997: Might and Power, 3:18:33 (jockey: Jim Cassidy, trainer: Jack Denham)

1977: Gold and Black, 3:18:40 (jockey: John Duggan, trainer: Bart Cummins)

1998: Jezabeel, 3:18:59 (jockey: Chris Munce, trainer: Brian Jenkins)

2000: Brew, 3:18:68 (jockey: Kerrin McEvoy, trainer: Mike Moroney)

1996: Saintly, 3:18:80 (jockey: Darren Beadman, trainer: Bart Cummins)