Ipswich punters still cashing in
THE Ipswich race meeting corresponding to the VRC Oaks Day went off without a hitch with just six races on the day.
As all other TAB tracks raced on Melbourne Cup day, the galloping ranks were thinly spread resulting in a smaller than normal card at Ipswich.
This didn't stop punters however as all winners on the day were on the top or second line of betting.
These included the Beaudesert-based Temujin's Moon for trainer Greg Cornish and jockey Michael Cahill.
Cup winning trend to remember
AS usual the Flemington four-day carnival across a spirited week provided a series of highlights as well as the odd lowlight.
While the lowlight was the loss of The Cliffsofmoher in the big race, the highlight was the win by northern hemisphere three-year-old Cross Counter in the Melbourne Cup.
This was the first Melbourne Cup win for the powerful Godolphin stable of Dubai after many years of trying to win the great race.
The win also highlighted the ever evolving race that is sought after around the world.
The race has become a truly international event with imported northern hemisphere bred horses winning 13 of the past 17.
However a new trend has emerged. That is to place a northern hemisphere three-year-old in the race, without racing in Australia by winning a European qualification for the race, and getting in with a featherweight.
After Rekindling saluted in 2017, Cross Counter won with 51kg despite a wide draw and after having to come from near last.
Both gallopers have proven themselves top class and the first of that age group to win the big race for almost 80 years.
Both Rekindlng and Cross Counter were described as four-year-olds in Australia. However they are only three-year-olds by the rules of their northern hemisphere birthplace.
After the past two years, expect to see a steady stream of similarly aged, weighted, and qualified northern hemisphere gallopers contesting the Melbourne Cup in future, as the great race continues to evolve.
Development project clicking into gear
AFTER laying dormant for a further three months up until the end of October, the Ipswich Infrastructure project has been clicked back into gear by Racing Queensland with just seven months remaining until Ipswich Cup Day.
A further delay to the project has occurred over the past three months as Racing Queensland selected a contractor and prepared the contract for signing.
The contractor has been chosen. However a further one-month delay occurred as a result of the finalising of the contract document.
Racing Queensland do however continue to promise completion of the total project, including new stalls and carpark, prior to Ipswich Cup Day in 2019.
There have been a few noticeable steps taken in recent weeks as the site is prepared for demolition and construction activity.
The construction area for the new jockeys, stewards, and members facilities as well as the forecourt inside of the main entrance has been clearly delineated.
Additionally, the erection of fencing and installation of site offices are further signs that the project start is nearing.
The next race meeting at Ipswich is Wednesday, followed by Wednesday, November 21, then Friday, November 30.