THE VERDICT Prizemoney boost for country racing
RACING Queensland will today announce a total of $550,000 prizemoney increases for the state’s nonTAB race meetings. The allocation is part of the first $18 million given to RQ by the government to fund prizemoney increases across the state.
Minimum prizemoney for all country races will now rise to $7450, with first prizemoney being $5000. The increases come into effect from Saturday.
“The prizemoney increases for both non-TAB and TAB thoroughbred racing aim to directly improve cash flow and industry viability for participants and owners,” RQ chairman Steve Wilson said.
“It is hoped the recent announcements will help lift confidence within the Queensland industry and make it more attractive to race a horse at any of Queensland’s 120 thoroughbred clubs.”
The news follows last week’s $75,000 Country Cups Challenge, which is one of several new country racing initiatives introduced over the past two seasons.
Wilson said regional thoroughbred racing contributed $445 million to the state’s economy annually. HOTPOTS SET THE PACE “GEEZ, how good is this going?”
That was the thought process of Matt McGillivray as the two favourites Kay Kay Boy (Jamie Kah) and Prioritise (Michael Murphy) carved each other up in front of him in the Brisbane Handicap at Doomben yesterday.
Kay Kay Boy had been sensationally backed and was keen to find the front, but Murphy gave Prioritise a dig and the pair set up a hectic tempo.
“It was like they were playing Tetris,” McGillivray said.
Stewards questioned both Kah and Murphy and noted their explanations that both horses fired up @xlbnathan_cmail [email protected] CLEAR PASSAGE: Matt McGillivray rides Coldstone to victory in the Brisbane Handicap. Picture: AAP after the early exchange and were difficult to restrain from that point. TRAINER’S FINE DISPUTED THE Queensland branch of the Australian Trainers Association has vowed to fight for trainer Brett Baker, who they feel was harshly treated in a finding by QRIC.
Baker was fined $1000, reduced to $750, for presenting the wrong horse to race at Toowoomba on November 24.
Baker had two horses engaged for the meeting – Wolf Tales (Race 2) and Halfeti (Race 5). He brought Halfeti to the races first, believing it was engaged in Race 2.
Baker said he looked at the official Racing Australia mobile site to determine which races the horses were engaged in and it had Halfeti’s race as second on the program.
Racing Australia confirmed its mobile site did in fact have the races in the wrong order and said it had since made moves to ensure this would not happen again.
Racing Queensland waived the scratching fee for Wolf Tales on the basis of Racing Australia’s admission.
However, QRIC have stuck solid with the fine, with director of stewarding Ali Wade saying Baker was the only trainer to present the incorrect horse on the day and that he should have established the correct runners when he checked the Sky Racing website for race times.
Queensland’s ATA branch representative Cameron Partington told Wade and Integrity Commissioner Ross Barnett his organisation would support Baker in his internal review and subsequent appeal to QCAT.
“We still firmly believe QRIC has judged this issue incorrectly and is a great example of where QRIC is failing to understand and interact with our people,” Partington said.
“We at the ATA are constantly working with you to bridge the gap between yourselves and the participants, a gap that unfortunately with cases like this will continue to grow.”