Now 120, Laura races prove staying power
CELEBRATING its 120th anniversary, the Laura Amateur Turf Club hosted a hugely successful day of racing at one of the most remote, picturesque race courses in the state.
According to the president of the club, Mr Graham Love, each year in recent times the event has grown more popular.
“This year it looks like we have had about 3500 people here which is great,” he said.
A featured event on Racing Queensland’s annual calendar, the Laura Races ran five races with an average of 7 horses in each race.
The Laura Cup was won by 6 year old Shekou trained by Janel Ryan of Atherton.
The mounts for the event came from a variety of stables including Mareeba, Cairns and Atherton and 12 horses participated from Mackay.
The enthusiastic crowd made for entertaining observation with many of the young women dressing for the Fashions of the Field.
Camping was the popular mode of accommodation in and around the racecourse grounds.
Coupled with the races was the Laura Rodeo and Campdraft Association’s rodeo and bull ride events on their arena adjacent the racecourse.
This year the two events combined at the gate so one entry fee of $30 enabled patrons to attend the races, rodeo and bull ride, and the Friday and Saturday nights’ entertainment.
“Where can you get a cheaper weekend for family entertainment on Cape York than in Laura this weekend?” Mr Love said.
The profits from the weekend race meet will be put towards an expansion of the water infrastructure.
“We are also going to push for an additional race for next year as well,” president Love said.
Where can you get a cheaper weekend for family entertainment on Cape York?
Smith family from Douglas Shire and beyond
Rosina Ives and Sandra Lanskey of Mossman
Zac Hornung-Clarke (Mareeba), Matt Meyer (Tolga), Chelsea Gallo and Dale Colgrave (Townsville)
Pip Fagg of Oak Beach and Meg Craven of Port Douglas
The Laura Cup