Calls for night racing to be fast tracked
THE foreman of one of Gold Coast's biggest racing stables, Trent Edmonds, has called on Gold Coast City Council to fast track the installation of lights at Aquis Park to enable to the 2019 Magic Millions to be raced at night.
The Bulletin reported this week that Racing Queensland had filed a development application for the installation of light poles at the Gold Coast Turf Club's Bundall venue.
Turf club chairman Brett Cook hopes the first night races are held within 18 months but Edmonds, the son of respected Gold Coast trainer Toby and foreman of Edmonds Racing, voiced his desire to have it sooner.
The Edmonds family won the 2017 Magic Millions $2 million Classic with Houtzen.
"Would love for it to be fast tracked so the 2019 Magic Millions could be run under lights, for horses, staff and crowds during the event," Edmonds said on Twitter.
"The day is one of the best but bloody hot."
It comes after leading trainer Tony McEvoy, who trained 2018 2YO Classic winner Sunlight, pleaded with Magic Millions co-owner Gerry Harvey to make the $10 million event a night meeting.
If Racing Queensland's application was to be approved by Council by the end of June it could give the Gold Coast Turf Club enough time to have the $6 million project, that Cook said would likely only take four to six months to complete, ready for the Magic Millions.
Cook said the lights could help entice more interstate trainers to open stables on the Gold Coast but stressed they were even more interested in the training track that is part of the same proposal.
"From the turf club's point of view yes the lights are great but it has to be in conjunction with the training track upgrades," Cook said.
"The training track is a very important part of it along with the tunnel for safety.
"The lights are great and will stimulate more interest from interstate trainers who are all waiting to see what happens with the training track."