THIS year, the feature race’s prize purse has swollen by $2500 to $8500 (including the actual Cup, which is worth $500), Wallabadah Jockey Club president Bill Kelly said.
Total prize money for today’s meeting is $32,500.
“It’s big for what some people call a picnic meet,” Mr Kelly said.
“Apart from our five exciting races, patrons can watch the Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne races on the screens and bet with bookies or the tote.”
One of the last true bush meetings in operation, the Wallabadah races are an annual excuse for families to get together.
The Wallabadah Jockey Club, established in 1852, is Australia’s oldest country racing club.
“Considering the races are fully organised by a volunteer committee, we are very proud of the fact the Wallabadah races are even older than the Melbourne Cup,” Mr Kelly said.
He is also looking forward to meeting up with his family members – the Kelly family has a long association with the race meeting.
“My family’s been involved with Wallabadah for 140 years,” Mr Kelly said.
“Apparently one of my great-uncles was secretary-manager at one stage.”