Newspaper article The Queensland Times (Ipswich, Australia)

Push for Saturday Meets; More Racing Tipped for Ipswich after Cash Increase

Newspaper article The Queensland Times (Ipswich, Australia)

Push for Saturday Meets; More Racing Tipped for Ipswich after Cash Increase

Article excerpt

CONTROL body Racing Queensland has announced a prizemoney increase for the three codes of racing in this state.

The total is $3.5 million, of which greyhounds and harness will each receive $400,000.

The increases start on September 1.

Given that greyhounds generate the second highest betting turnover on the TAB, some might argue it isn't fair for harness to be allocated the same amount of increase.

At the end of the day, though, the $400,000 for the greyhounds is a fair share of the $3.5 million being made available.

Greyhound and harness turnover will never go close to what the thoroughbreds attract and we have to simply live with that fact.

The $400,000 amount is 11.4 percent of $3.5 million and that's about what the greyhound code contributes to overall turnover.

There won't be a prizemoney increase in the strict sense of the word.

The plan is to add extra race meetings to the greyhound TAB schedule. So what does this mean for Ipswich?

Given that the greyhound population in Rockhampton and Townsville couldn't sustain extra meetings, it's going to be Ipswich and/or Albion Park where additional meetings will be scheduled. Currently, Albion Park stages four meetings per week, on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday.

Ipswich races on Tuesday and Friday.

Albion Park has to fit in with the harness schedule of racing on Tuesday and Saturdays.

The $400,000 should enable around 30 additional race meetings per year and it would seem logical that Ipswich will be the venue for the majority of the additional dates.

But which day?

The obvious choice is Saturday and that's something various Ipswich committees have been striving for since Saturday night racing finished at the Showgrounds in 1998 to fit in with the Sky Racing television schedule.

Ideally, for the purpose of continuity, you'd like to see an additional meeting each week in the same timeslot. That may not be possible but let's be thankful for small mercies.

Ipswich greyhound racing, Saturday twilight, on Sky Racing 2. Now I like the sound of that.

Gaddes' vision

KEEN Dogwatch reader Wayne Gaddes recently contacted me with his vision for greyhound racing at Ipswich. …

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