Sport

Race Club reaping the rewards

By Jarryd Barca

The Corowa Race Club has been rewarded with an extra two TAB race meetings for the 2018/19 calendar season.

Handed to them from Racing NSW because of past frequent courtesies, there will now be an extra meeting in September 2018 and January 2019.

Corowa Race Club Secretary Sheridan Kay said it’s a major coup for the club and the town.

“It’s just so good for Corowa, and it’s good for people who like to come up this way even for our mid-week TAB meetings,” Ms Kay told The Free Press.

“We get people up from Melbourne who’ll come up for the day, we have our members bar open on those days as well to the public so it’s always an enjoyable event. Especially in the winter months, people gather in there and we have the bar open and it’s quite an intimate setting.

“I think people appreciate that in the colder months because they can come and still be warm and watch the races comfortably.

“We’re really humbled and grateful for the feedback that we receive from outsiders.”

The Corowa Racecourse will now see seven TAB race meetings as opposed to the five general meetings they’ve hosted in the past.

“We run all TAB race meetings now which is fantastic,” Ms Kay said.

“Not all of our race meetings were usually TAB and now they are because we were able to take on extra meetings in the past couple of years when other clubs pulled out because of weather conditions.

“The Corowa Race Club was able to instead put a race meeting together at the drop of a hat – our track holds up really well in bad weather.

“We’ve got a great committee here and it’s been a massive team effort.”

The reward from Racing NSW and efforts of those at the club to continuously improve the racing experience has significantly turned the club around financially, and in-turn it’s benefited the club with extra meetings as well.

“It’s huge for us financially, we don’t reel in as much of a figure from non-TAB meetings,” Ms Kay said.

“Now we’ll put on a race day and even if we don’t get too many people flocking through the gates, we can still have good runners and good betting.

“We’ve never had a non-successful TAB meeting in the past so we’re over the moon to be able to host two extras as a bonus.”

The first race meeting of the 2018/19 calendar was held on Tuesday, July 3, with a September meeting, Melbourne Cup eve, December Christmas meeting, January, the Corowa Cup in March and a final meeting next June still to look forward to.

“We always encourage everyone to come to the races, it’s a lovely family friendly day. Bring the kids, there’s always something on for the kids on our bigger race meetings and enjoy the country racing atmosphere here in Corowa,” Ms Kay said, looking forward to hopefully another successful calendar season.

Ms Kay also praised Racing NSW for their contribution in allowing Corowa to improve its racing experience.

“We’re very appreciative to Racing NSW for the extra two meetings and grateful that our work has been recognized,” she said.

“In the past seven years, as a group effort by the committee and our board members, the race club has turned the corner financially and has been running a profit for the past two years. The same will again occur this year and it’s a testament to the efforts of everyone.”

Ms Kay has also been overwhelmed by the positive feedback given from attendees, some who have had to travel a fair way.

One lady from out of town even took the time to send a letter of endearment to the club for putting on “such a wonderful race day” last Melbourne Cup eve.

Corowa’s next race meeting will be held on Monday, September 17. General admission tickets are $15 and gates usually open at 11.30am.