Fillies herald autumn season
WITH temperatures soaring well above the 30-degree mark yesterday, it was a little difficult to contemplate a change of seasons, yet the Lismore Turf Club is about to embark on a run of six race meetings it is billing as its 'autumn' carnival.
The club yesterday trotted out some well-dressed women and a young filly, the Owen Glue-trained Egyptian Bay, which hopes to make its racing debut sometime during the carnival.
The season opener will be held next Monday and it will be the first race meeting at Lismore since the Christmas Cup.
“We purposely don't race during January because it is too hot and humid and there are too many people away on holidays,” Michael Timbrell, club secretary, said. “It is just not the time to be racing and autumn presents a much more pleasant time to come to the races, and to promote them better and get a better crowd through the turnstiles.”
Timbrell said Lismore's racing calendar had 'morphed' into three distinct periods with the autumn, spring and pre-Christmas meetings attracting the most interest from punters.
“Autumn is a great time to be racing because you have got some good racing coming up in Victoria and Sydney,” he said.
“Sydney autumn racing is the biggest carnival in Australia and our meetings in March and April coincide with some good meetings in Sydney, which gives our race some leverage.”
Even with the best technology available, such as online betting and live coverage of races on Sky Channel, Timbrell said the race track still represented the best bet for punters.
“The advantage of coming to the race course, especially when there is a metro meeting, is that you can compare the bookmaker's prices and TAB prices and get the best value for your dollar,” he said.
The autumn carnival would also feature a number of 'themes', including the March 1 event, which will be sponsored by the pork industry and have a 'wild west' flavour.
Patrons can purchase a ticket for $60 that includes entry to the race course, a seat in the stand, a four hours drinks package and a lunch with a Wild West menu that would include American spare ribs, buffalo wings, country style ham and even a rabbit stew.
Meanwhile, nominations close today for Monday's meeting which is expected to have seven or eight races on the program.