The Jared Wehlow trained Onemore Emotion wins at Callaghan Park.
The Jared Wehlow trained Onemore Emotion wins at Callaghan Park.

Crowd allowed back for feature race day

HORSE RACING: Racegoers are rallying to be trackside with online bookings amassing to ensure attendance at the annual St Peter’s Day Caulfield Cup races at Rockhampton’s Callaghan Park racecourse on Saturday, October 17.

Traditionally Rockhampton’s most alluring race day attracting thousands to the course, this year because of COVID-19 Safe Plan protocols, the crowd has been capped at 2000.

Every racegoer is assured of a seat which is a condition of protocol for the allowable crowd numbers.

Rockhampton Jockey Club CEO Tony Fenlon said already bookings had been sold out for the Members Lounge but tickets were still available for the Pimm’s Party and the Garden Reserve.

“The response has been very encouraging. Attendance to the track can only be pre-purchased online. There will be no sales of tickets on race day”, Fenlon said.

General admission tickets at $30 each allows entry to the racecourse and entry to the exclusive grandstand area with outside seating on the front lawn.

Fenlon said there would be barbecue food for purchase from 10.30am and a cash bar would operate from 11am with a bookmaker operating within the area.

The Precinct Pimm’s Party, which was so well received at last year’s St Peter’s Day races, is also proving very popular this year but some tickets are still available.

Priced at $140 per person, the package includes entry on course and admission to one of precincts of the Pimm’s Party from 11.30am.

Undercover seating is provided for each person in the old betting ring and the cost includes Finger Food lunch and sweets served throughout the afternoon.

A beverage package is also included with the provision of Pimm’s beer, wine and soft drink served from 12.30pm to 4.30pm.

“The club is looking forward to having racegoers back at Callaghan Park and St Peter’s Day always has a buzz about it. Full details providing information about ticket sales are available on the Rockhampton Jockey Club Facebook page”, Fenlon said.

With the majority of the race days at Callaghan Park this year being patron free (no racegoers allowed), the October 17 day will be only the second major this year opened to racegoers since COVID 19 came into play.

The other was Rockhampton Cup Day on July 17, when only a crowd of a few hundred racegoers including stakeholders were permitted on course.

In other news announced yesterday, the RJC has transferred its TAB race meeting set for Thursday, October 1, to Keppel Park, Yeppoon.

Fenlon said this had come about to allow the Callaghan Park turf track, which is undergoing major renovations this month, a few more weeks of growing time.

“Look if we could have foreseen that there would not have been any much-needed falls of rain while the works were underway, we would not have planned to be back on track for October 1,” he said.

“After inspection of the track this morning with Racing Queensland officials we made the immediate call to transfer to Keppel Park for the October 1 meeting.

“That allows us the vital extra time to ensure the track is presented for the return to racing on October 17 the way we want it.”

Fenlon said racegoers were permitted to attend the October 1 race day at Keppel Park but must register online beforehand with the RJC.

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