TAMWORTH Jockey Club staged one of its most successful Cup meetings in a number of years on Sunday as Muswellbrook, Binnaway and Quirindi race clubs all prepare to run off that success with major meets of their own over the weekend.
Muswellbrook Race Club runs an eight-race TAB meeting tomorrow with three feature events – an Arrowfield Autumn Sprint, Miss Finland 2YO Fillies and Mares and a Star Kingdom 2YO Colts and Geldings – worth $80,000 in prizemoney between them.
Muswellbrook received 179 nominations earlier this week while Binnaway Jockey Club received almost 100 nominations for Saturday’s Binnaway Cup meeting, a meeting highlighted by its $5000 Binnaway Cup (1300m).
The Quirindi Jockey Club runs its Les Howard Willow Tree Cup meeting on Monday and officials were delighted with some 176 nominations for the seven-race TAB
President Jeff Galbraith is preparing for a big meeting.
“When you look at Muswellbrook with 179 noms and Mudgee has something like 160 for Sunday as well, it makes our result (176 nominations) pretty good.
“Muswellbrook has got two $30,000 and one $20,000 race and Mudgee has a $30,000 Gold Cup too while we have seven $10,000 races.
“The Les Howard Willow Tree Cup will be a good race. It’s good to have a horse like Gold Buckle in that Rating 60.
“The track is also in great nick and if we get a day like today it will be perfect.”
Galbraith is also preparing for a roll-out of the plastic rails over the next few months.
“Muswellbrook and Scone will start that next week and then us. Tamworth, Armidale and Gunnedah will go as well.
“It’s costing us something like 30 to 40 thousand.
“We supply the cost of installation and Racing NSW is supplying the new railing.
“It’s going to be great for us in the long run.”
It’s also part of a five-year plan being installed by the Quirindi club.
Tamworth Jockey Club president Tim Coates said Sunday’s Tamworth Cup was an unqualified success.
“It was a day of firsts for us,” Coates said.
“We had Carlton United and Treasury Wine Estates on board for the first time as major sponsors, a new caterer (Corey’s Catering) and finished with a fantastic day.
“The TAB turnover was very pleasing (estimated to be around $1.5million) for the day, especially the fixed odds betting.
“And we had a good crowd too.
“All that and with Racing NSW chairman John Messara up here as well.
“It was an absolute pleasure to have him here and he was very interested in what we have here at Tamworth.
“He had a look around in the jockeys’ room, the public areas and the members.
“He was interested about our new stand as well.”
Work on the multi-million dollar John Clift Stand, named in honour of long-serving committeeman and president John Clift, begins in a month or so.
“It will be in operation for next year’s Cup meeting,” Coates said.
“But Sunday was well supported and can only get bigger and better for us.”
Yesterday Gold Buckle received topweight of 61kg for Monday’s Les Howard Willow Tree Cup.
LES HOWARD WILLOW TREE CUP WEIGHTS
Gold Buckle (Peter Mills) 61, Blinkin Swift (Ross Stitt) 59.5, Blyton (Craig Martin) 58.5, Double Halo (Luke Griffith) 58, Mews (Grant Marshall) 56.5, Hesashow (Luke Berger) 56, Significant Other (Michael Mulholland) 55, Lionira (Sue Grills) 54, Pitamiss (Gavin Groth) 54, Our Magic Miss (Todd Howlett) 54, Dysturb (Luke Griffith) 54, Wingen Win ((Dean McHardie) 54, Excess All Areas ((Derek Piper) 54, Trial To Triumph (Albert Stapleford) 54, Rocky Dancer (Colin Fields) 54.