Skip to main content

as we warm up for Cheltenham in the UK, the Australian version closes down

Just over two weeks to the fantastic Cheltenham festival in the UK, the World Series of jumping. This year promises to be as big any other, I really can't see the recession making an ounce of difference.


But sadly, Cheltenham racecourse in Australia has closed its gates for the final time. Racing in South Australia (capital city Adelaide) is in a sad state of affairs. Once within sight of Victorian racing as a competitor, now it probably ranks below Tasmania and WA for interest and prizmoney. The govt really have let it slide and the big stables have deserted it in droves. Consequently, three city tracks in Adelaide had to be downsized. After debate lasting several years, Cheltenham in the north-west suburbs was put up for sale. By the picture above, you can see just how dry it is in Adelaide. Track three, Victoria Park, in the beautiful public access parklands (meaning they can never lock it up as a secure venue), will probably not be used again.

Morphettville was always the premier track in Adelaide, now all the money is going into upgrading the facility and adding a second grass track. But if the prizemoney is still poor (standard races yesterday were for $25k prizepool, very poor for Saturday metro) then the standard of facilities ain't going to make a lick of difference.

A sting might be in the tail though re Cheltenham. It was sold off to a property developer and money has yet to change hands. And it wouldn't take much cynicism in the current state of the economy to think that could be a while off yet....

Cheltenham in Adelaide has a special place in my heart. I was once kicked off the course by a zealous policewoman who picked I was betting under age, about six months before my 18th birthday. Male police didn't care or didn't notice, I'd been betting at various tracks for years by that stage! She could have picked a better time - I'd been losing all day and just started turning it around with a couple of winners in a row when I was advised to move on!

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Preview de la Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe 2020

The European flat racing season comes to its natural conclusion in this messed up hell of a year. The queen of the turf, Enable, goes for an historic third win but it has been wet and cold all week in Paris, making it a tough old slog in deep ground. There won't be much of a crowd there to 'bring the house down' if she wins, in front of no more than 1000 paying spectators, but the racing world will be tuning in across the globe. ===============================================
Prix de L'Arc de Triomphe ParisLongchamp, 1605 local, 1505 BST, 0005 Monday Sydney time.  2400m, Group 1 Weight-for-Age, (no geldings)  Approx €3m.  Expected Going - Heavy.  1.Persian King - 4yo, Kingman/Pretty Please - Andre Fabre - Pierre Charles Boudot Star French colt stepping up to a mile and a half for the first time. Won the French 2000 Guineas (Poulains) on heavy ground but ran fourth (only time in his career finishing worse than second) in the Jacques Le Marois, almost nine lengths behind P…

lay the field - my favourite racing strategy

Dabbling with laying the field in-running at various prices today, not just one price, but several in the same race. Got several matched in the previous race at Brighton, then this race came along at Nottingham. Such a long straight at Nottingham makes punters often over-react and think the finish line is closer than it actually is. As you can see by the number of bets matched, there was plenty of volatility in this in-play market. It's rare you'll get a complete wipe-out with one horse getting matched at all levels, but it can happen, so don't give yourself too much risk...

The Melbourne Cup preview 2019

We're back again for the greatest race on turf, the world's richest staying race and the only race in the world which creates a public holiday for millions of locals.




Once again a fine international field has been assembled and it's worth a deep look at the race. So get a cuppa and find a comfortable seat to plough your way through my preview!

--------------------------------

The Lexus Melbourne Cup
Group 1, Handicap, 3200m
AUD 7,750,000
Flemington 1500 local, 0400 GMT
Broadcasters - Network 10 (AUS), Racing.com (worldwide), SkySportsRacing (UK)


1. Cross Counter
Trainer - Charlie Appleby (one previous Cup win)
Jockey - William Buick
Breeding - Teofilo - Waitress
Drawn 5, Weight 57.5kg

Last year's impressive winner who doesn't get the 3yo weight advantage this time. Won first up at Meydan in March but has run fourth, third, fourth in the big set weights staying races in England and Ireland, never quite making it as the next big staying star. While running close behind Stradivar…