Randwick news a blow to Ballina

By STEVE SPINKS THE Ballina Cup is less likely to go ahead on September 13 following the positive tests for equine influenza at Randwick Racecourse yesterday.

The secretary-manager of the Ballina Jockey Club, Steve Taylor, retains some hope the marquee event will still run, but the findings at Randwick yesterday will have far-reaching ramifications.

"We won't know anything for certain until next Monday," Taylor said.

"But racing at Grafton for next Wednesday and racing at Wyong for next week have been called off.

"If Randwick is that heavily contaminated then I think our chances are slipping away."

Meanwhile, in some good news, the Ballina track is no longer in complete lock-down.

Horses stationed in stables along Racecourse Road have been allowed to do trackwork after gaining an emergency permit from the Department of Primary Industries.

"About 128 horses have applied for a permit," Taylor said.

"We had horses doing trackwork on Wednesday morning and this morning and at this stage we should be open again tomorrow."



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