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The Victoria Racing Club (VRC) together with Principal Partner, Emirates, is delighted to announce Mischa Barton as a special guest at the 2012 Emirates Melbourne Cup on Tuesday 6 November.

The US-raised Anglo-Irish actress turned fashion designer catapulted to fame playing Marissa Cooper in the TV hit The OC. Barton - who has delivered eight successful seasons of her handbag line and just launched her flagship clothing boutique in London's fashionable east end - is currently combining highly successful careers in both fashion and entertainment. In September 2012 Ms Barton is returning to the stage in an Irish production of Steel Magnolias with Australian actress Anne Charleston.

Born to an Irish mother and with a grandfather who was a Gaelic language professor at the University of Belfast, Ms Barton will be a glamorous addition to the exclusive Irish-themed Emirates Marquee on Emirates Melbourne Cup Day, which has been inspired by the famous landmarks of Ireland’s capital and Trinity College.

Ms Barton will then join the VRC Chairman Michael Burn to watch the ‘race that stops a nation’TM in the Chairman’s Suite.

“I am so looking forward to being a guest of Emirates and the Victoria Racing Club at the Emirates Melbourne Cup,” said Ms Barton. “I am excited to visit Flemington racecourse and witness what I understand is an extraordinary fashion spectacle.

“Being of Irish decent, I’m sure I will feel right at home in the Emirates Marquee and I can’t wait to be involved in this world-famous event.”

VRC Chairman Michael Burn said the VRC was looking forward to welcoming the international beauty to Flemington for Emirates Melbourne Cup Day.

“Ms Barton’s presence emphasises the international appeal of the Melbourne Cup Carnival.

“We have no doubt her time at Flemington will be one that she fondly remembers,” said Mr Burn.

Boutros Boutros, Senior Vice President, Corporate Communication, Emirates Airline, said: “We are delighted to host Mischa Barton on Emirates Melbourne Cup Day, as we celebrate Dublin, which earlier this year joined Emirates’ ever expanding global network.”

Barton will attend the Emirates Melbourne Cup with her partner, London-based actor Sebastian Knapp.

Prior to her trip to Melbourne, Barton and Knapp will relax at Emirates luxurious Wolgan Valley Resort & Spa, located in the Blue Mountains World Heritage Area. The resort is well known hideaway for international A-listers and royalty due to its privacy, seclusion and high-end luxury.