No worries over date changes - Rockhampton Jockey Club CEO
ROCKHAMPTON Jockey Club (RJC) CEO Bill Colgan said a revised scheduling format of race dates for the 2014-15 season announced by Racing Queensland (RQ) had very little impact upon the club.
Colgan said the three Rockhampton race clubs - RJC, St Patrick's and the Rocky Amateurs had maintained the status quo of 45 race dates next season as had been designated on the original schedule.
He said this equated to 297 races being run at Callaghan Park racecourse.
"The RJC has only had the one change to the schedule and that was the amendment whereby the Friday, August 29 race meeting has been brought back to Thursday, August 21," Colgan said.
The biggest changes to the race dates schedule have been the abandonment of races being staged in Queensland of a Tuesday.
Rockhampton had not been allocated any Tuesday race dates, but officials of both Townsville and Mackay which often raced on that day are pleased with their abolition. A high percentage of the Tuesday race dates held previously by Mackay have been transferred to Sunday dates.
Colgan said clubs racing on Tuesdays shared the common problem of finding that day commercially difficult in attracting patrons to the course.
"We (RJC) are pleased, as on our wish list we asked for some Sunday race dates and we have been granted three. These are September 21, October 26 and December 7. We believe the Sundays provide a far greater opportunity for families to attend Callaghan Park races. We will be promoting those meetings along those lines," Colgan said.
Another bonus for Rockhampton racing, according to Colgan, was the new race date of Saturday, January 3, 2105 for the RJC. "This new date will allow coverage of the Rockhampton races on SKYRacing1," he said.
Live telecasts on SKYRacing1 attract a far wider audience which generally equates to expanded betting turnover.
While the RJC was advised of the new race schedule last Friday it remains none the wiser about any proposals by RQ to lift prizemoney after the new Queensland wagering contract was finalised recently.
"We have been given no direction whatsoever about any news on prizemoney and are only aware of any news on the matter by what comes out in the press," Colgan said. RQ has said that it would be addressing the prizemoney issue among further deliberations in the months ahead.