LIST: Where every Melbourne Cup finisher placed
1. Vow And Declare ($4.4 million)
2. Prince Of Arran ($1.1 million)
3. Il Paradiso ($550,000)
4. Master Of Reality ($350,000)
Stewards have found that jockey Frankie Dettori blocked stablemate Il Paradiso in the run to the line, dumping the second place-finisher back to fourth.
The stewards protest was upheld in a bizarre hearing where both Dettori and Il Paradiso's jockey Wayne Lordan refused to give evidence that would result in Master of Reality being penalised.
Racing Victoria announced after the stewards meeting that Master of Reality has officially been relegated to finish fourth, while third-place finisher Prince of Arran has been promoted to second and Il Paradiso has officially finished third.
Lordan said his horse wasn't checked.
"I didn't have to stop riding," he said of the contact from Master of Reality.
"It was very close at the line. I didn't know how much of a difference it made. We have got tight, but I honestly don't know how much of a difference it made.
"It was very close to the line. My horse didn't back out of it. He's a very tough horse and he kept running through it."
Dettori said Il Paradiso still had room to move.
"He was going left. I put both hands on the rein and straightened him up. They had plenty of room to move through," Dettori said.
FULL RESULTS: FINISHING ORDER
1. Vow and Declare
2. Prince of Arran
3. Il Paradiso
4. Master of Reality
5. Surprise Baby
6. Mer De Glace
8. Cross Counter
9. Steel Prince
10. Magic Wand
11. Twilight Payment
14. Mirage Dancer
15. Hunting Horn
16. Raymond Tusk
17. The Chosen One
19. Southern France
Historic win amid protests
Vow and Declare has squeezed through a heart-stopping moment where jockey Craig Williams was pushed into the railing to win the 2019 Melbourne Cup.
The historic win was followed by a moment of "high drama" as Racing Victoria stewards launched a protest against second-finishing runner Master of Reality.
The richest ever running of the race that stops the nation has handed the connections of Aussie horse Vow And Declare as well as jockey Craig Williams and trainer Danny O'Brien a record $4.4 million payday.
The Flemington crowd were treated to a famous running of the $8 million richest handicap race on turf, where Vow and Declare gave Australia the win it was so desperately needing after a series of foreign winners.
Master of Reality finished second ahead of Prince of Arran and Il Paradiso, who needed a photo finish to split them.
Video replays showed Master of Reality appeared to change its line to push in towards Vow and Declare on the railing in an action that shut the door on Il Paradiso, just at the moment jockey Wayne Lordan's runner was pushing forward for the race lead.
It was announced after the race that Stewards are reviewing jockey Frankie Dettori's apparent decision to block Il Paradiso in the final 200m.
The steward's inquiry has put trainer Joseph O'Brien's Master of Reality against his father Aidan O'Brien's Il Paradiso.
"There's high drama for the Melbourne Cup," Network Ten's Michael Felgate reported.
"If you backed Vow And Declare you are safe. You have nothing to worry about, it is safe.
"It is a protest, fourth Il Paradiso against second, which is Master Of Reality.
"Jockey Wayne Lorden didn't lodge the protest because they are both trained by Aiden O'Brien. The stewards have fired in the objection. If the objection is upheld, Master Of Reality will be relegated and Prince Of Arran will move into second and Il Paradiso will move into third.
"The protest is ongoing."
Four-year-old Il Paradiso was sandwiched between Master of Reality Vow and Declare but recovered to finish fourth.
Local hope Vow and Declare led the field as they passed the post for the first time.
Twilight Payment then set the pace as they entered the final turn.
In a four-way dart to the finish, Master of Reality surged to the lead with 100m to go, but Vow and Declare kicked in the final 50m to win by a nose.