Sun­day cup day

The Weekly Advertiser Horsham - - Sport - BY COLIN MACGILLIVR­AY

Hor­sham and District Rac­ing Club is ready to cel­e­brate the re­turn of the Millers Hor­sham Cup to its tra­di­tional Sun­day run­ning at the week­end.

The cup has been run on Fri­day for the past four years af­ter a Rac­ing Vic­to­ria sched­ul­ing clash forced a change of days.

Cup at­ten­dance suf­fered due to the change and the club suc­cess­fully lob­bied Hor­sham Ru­ral City Coun­cil to re­place the Mel­bourne Cup pub­lic hol­i­day with a Hor­sham Cup pub­lic hol­i­day last year.

The move was op­posed by lo­cal busi­nesses un­will­ing to lose a Fri­day trade day.

With the cup now re­turned to Sun­day, Hor­sham and District Rac­ing Club man­ager Lisa Inkster said the club, lo­cal busi­nesses and the com­mu­nity would all ben­e­fit.

“We were very disappoint­ed the pre­vi­ous Fri­day date couldn’t work lo­cally,” she said.

“We are happy to have the cup back on Sun­day though, be­cause it was never our choice to move dates in the first place.

“We are de­lighted with the busi­ness sup­port for a re­turn to Sun­day.

“The hope and the ex­pec­ta­tion go­ing for­ward is that the Hor­sham Cup is now per­ma­nently back to be­ing on Sun­day.”

Mrs Inkster said she was un­sure if at­ten­dance would re­cover im­me­di­ately, as some mem­bers of the com­mu­nity were still un­aware the cup had been changed back to a Sun­day.

“I still have peo­ple ask­ing me when the cup is go­ing to be,” she said.

“I would ex­pect it’s go­ing to take a cou­ple of years to re­build the at­ten­dance numbers to where they were.”

Mrs Inkster said nom­i­na­tions were strong across the board for the eight-race meet­ing. Among the re­gional train­ers to nom­i­nate for the $50,000 fea­ture race are Hor­sham’s Si­mon Ge­bert and Stawell fa­ther-daugh­ter duo Terry and Ka­rina O’sul­li­van.

Wim­mera ex­port Dar­ren Weir has also nom­i­nated, as has War­rnam­bool’s Matthew Wil­liams with last year’s cup win­ner Our Bot­tino.

Promi­nent train­ers to nom­i­nate in other races in­clude Archie Alexan­der and Eric Mus­grove. Fields for the cup will be fi­nalised to­mor­row. A notable fea­ture of Sun­day’s meet­ing will be the 2100-me­tre bench­mark-64 hand­i­cap in race six.

Mrs Inkster said it would be the first time in many years the cup meet­ing had a race over that dis­tance. Usu­ally the long­est race at the meet­ing is the 1800-me­tre fea­ture.

The day will fea­ture plenty of off-track en­ter­tain­ment, with live mu­sic and a fash­ions on the field com­pe­ti­tion spon­sored by Price­line Phar­macy.

There will also be chil­dren’s en­ter­tain­ment and a chil­dren’s fash­ions cat­e­gory.

Mrs Inkster said tick­ets for the cup could be pur­chased on­line, with gen­eral ad­mis­sion tick­ets avail­able for $15 on the Coun­try Rac­ing Vic­to­ria web­site un­til Satur­day or $20 at the gate on Sun­day.

Tick­ets for the Texan War­ney mar­quee are also avail­able at https://coun­try.rac­ with an of­fer of three tick­ets for the price of two avail­able to those who pur­chase through the web­site.

Gates will open at 11am, with rac­ing to start about 1pm.

• Aaron Jennings is the win­ner of The Weekly Ad­ver­tiser Hor­sham Cup fea­ture give­away for com­ing up with the horse name Bet­ter Hoof It. Mr Jennings will re­ceive three tick­ets to the Texan War­ney mar­quee on Sun­day.

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