Eagle Farm on track for expanded calendar
WITH its first back-to-back Saturday test behind it, the Brisbane Racing Club says Eagle Farm is now ready to take on an expanded schedule in 2019-20, including a return to three consecutive Group 1 Saturdays.
Race dates released in March show Eagle Farm hosting 29 Saturdays next season, a number that was endorsed at the time by track managers Mick Goodie and Peter Birch.
The next big test for the track will be in October when it hosts five consecutive Saturdays and then a sixth meeting on Melbourne Cup Day.
It is pencilled in to host the three highest profile Brisbane days of the summer carnival and also race alongside Randwick's Championships in 2020, before the winter carnival.
The carnival will have changes, with the Derby most likely to move to Kingsford Smith Cup Day and speculation of a new race to complement the Magic Millions National Sale, but the BRC is adamant the Treasury Oaks will remain in its traditional slot a week before the Stradbroke, but next year return to Eagle Farm.
"The performance of the Eagle Farm track through the carnival and into winter augurs well for the upcoming racing season, with an increased schedule of strategically placed dates during our carnivals and alongside interstate carnivals," BRC general manager of racing Matt Rudolph said.
"Despite some calls the track raced a bit firm on its first test of consecutive Saturdays, there is no doubting its ability to withstand traffic with minimal surface damage.
"Eagle Farm led an exceptional wagering result for industry throughout this year's carnival and as Queensland racing's major asset, we look forward to growing this."