This year’s Warrnambool May Racing Carnival has registered a record profit of $576,455 (up 3.7 per cent) for Warrnambool Racing Club.
The profit comes on the back of a modern day-record attendance of 30,514 patrons. WRC chief executive Peter Downs said the carnival was going from strength to strength.
“The carnival is continuing to grow,” Downs said.
“We’re continually looking at ways to improve and grow the experience for patrons that attend. We had marvellous weather over the three days, which was a real bonus.”
The club’s 2016-17 financial report reveals an operating profit of $340,076 for the season – $104,663 better than budget. After depreciation on funded assets and capital funding, a net profit of $1,485,454 was achieved. This includes capital grants of $1,350,160. Raceday packages increased from $694,695 to $769,680, while functions were down from $275,354 to $225,790 and expenses in administration jumped from $134,431 to $189,748.
“The lift in the administration comes about because of legal costs relating to the new on-course equine clinic,” Downs said.
“Our raceday packages increase was due to the carnival where we had marquees for more young people which were very successful.”
The result of a committee election – with sitting members John Hutson, Steven Waterhouse, John Krygger and independent member Michael McCluskey vying for three positions – will be announced at the annual general meeting on October 26.
STAR mare Jameka was crowned the 2016-17 champion stayer at the Australian racehorse of the year awards in Brisbane on Sunday night.
Jameka took out the award after wins in the 2016 Caulfield Cup, 2017 BMW Stakes and a second placing in the Australian Cup. The five-year-old, trained by Ciaron Maher in those performances, has missed this spring as she recovers from a bout of travel sickness.
Aaron Purcell – who has taken over the training duties at Maher’s Caulfield stables since he was suspended for six months – said the past week has flown, as he manages the Caulfield operation and his own Warrnambool stables.
“It’s been a really busy week since I took over Ciaron’s stables,” Purcell said.
“I just sort of hit the ground running. There’s just so much to learn with more than 80 horses at Caulfield.
“I’m really lucky because there’s a great team of workers in place at Caulfield. The structures in place at Caulfield are excellent as everyone knows what their job is and they do it. I’ve also been fortunate to have great staff at Warrnambool.”
Meanwhile, former Brauer College Warrnambool student Teo Nugent rode his first winner when Columbia won a restricted race at Seymour on Sunday.
It was only Nugent’s fourth race ride, after having his first mount at Casterton last month before two rides at Ararat. The 19-year-old is apprenticed to Purcell after being with Maher.
YOUNG trainer Mitch Freedman said he will resist the temptation of running his promising colt Bravo Tango in any spring features after he ran a gallant second in a $120,000 race at Flemington on Saturday.
“I’ll tip him out now and bring Bravo Tango back in for the autumn,” Freedman said. “He was not entered for any of the big three-year-old races in the spring.
“I was extremely happy with his run on Saturday, but I’ve always been of the opinion he will be a better horse in the autumn. It’s tempting to push ahead, but I don’t think I will go down that path. “Bravo Tango picked up $21,600 for his connections with his second placing on Saturday.
VETERAN Crossley trainer Quinton Scott is showing no signs of slowing down.
Scott ventured to Moonee Valley with new stable acquisition Plateau Gold to run in a 955m race on Friday night arriving back home at 1.30am Saturday.
After a cup of tea and a snack, Scott was back at the Warrnambool track at 3.50am Saturday morning to work his team of eight horses.
“Having a runner at the night races is always an early morning exercise,” Scott said.
“There’s not much we can do about it. The Valley race started at 8.30pm on Friday night. It could have been worse, we could have been in the last race which started at 10pm.”
Plateau Gold, who has only been in Scott’s care for six weeks, ran third in the $55,000 race.
“He’s been a great bread and butter horse for his connections. It was always going to be a hard race to win after he drew a wide barrier.
“We’ll get him ready for another sprint race at the Valley in three weeks.”
Plateau Gold has won 11 of his 37 starts.
WARRNAMBOOL jockey Declan Bates will be on the sidelines until October 14, after being suspended on a careless riding charge at Murtoa on Saturday.
Stewards found Bates allowed Durinns Girl to shift out when insufficiently clear of Jamieson Jane, which was tightened out onto Shropshire Lass having to be checked. Stewards deemed the incident to be in the low range. Christine Puls was suspended at Hamilton on Friday. Puls pleaded guilty to a careless riding charge after her ride on Barely A Moment. She can resume on October 14.