Jul 18

Facebook and Twitter users pick Melbourne Cup favourites

Photo: Robert CianfloneFacebook users appears to be backing Admire Rakti to take out the Melbourne Cup tomorrow while Twitters are behind Signoff.

Analysis by Facebook of social media mentions over the weekend shows the five most favoured horses, all with odds of less than $10, were also the five most-mentioned on the social media platform.

Admire Rakti, Signoff, Lucia Valentina, Fawkner and Protectionist are the five horses that have generated the most buzz among Facebook’s 13-million-strong Australian community.

But among the Twitterati, Signoff is the preferred steed. The five-year-old English-bred stayer has been the most tweeted about horse in the past three days, popping up in 690 tweets ahead of Admire Rakti’s 500, analysis of Twitter data using social media analysis tool Trendsmap has found.

Signoff has earned some high-profile support, with Prime Minister Tony Abbott tipping the nag to take out the cup and Premier and racing minister Denis Napthine taking to Twitter to put his weight behind the horse:

The other horses creating the most buzz on Twitter were Protectionist, Red Cadeaux and Fawkner. Sea Moon was the third most mentioned horse on Twitter, however this was due to people tweeting news of its scratching on Monday.

More than two million posts on Facebook mentioned the Cup Carnival over the weekend, the company’s data science team has found. Meanwhile, more than 20,000 tweets mentioning the Melbourne Cup Carnival have been sent out since Saturday, Trendsmap data shows.

Across the platforms, there are some differences in popularity for particular horses. Who Shot Thebarman, Junoob and Brambles have been popular on Facebook but shunned by the Twitterati, while the opposite could be said of Gatewood.

And when comparing horses to their odds, Seismos and Gatewood have generated more interest on Twitter than the bookies would expect, while Brambles has been punching above its weight on Facebook.

Mr O’Ceirin, which has the longest odds against it, has all but failed to register on social media, being ranked as the least mentioned horse on both social media platforms.

But Unchain my Heart, the horse with the second-longest odds against it according to Sportsbet, appears to have captured social media’s imagination. It was the 12th most mentioned horse on Facebook and the 11th most mentioned on Twitter.

However, it is uncertain whether the people mentioning the eight-year-old mare are seriously backing it – or indeed any other horse being talked about on social media – to actually take out the Cup.

Source: Sydney Morning Herald

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