Avondale Return to Racing to be Rescheduled

Thursday 29 March

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The Avondale track was inspected on Monday and again today after a number of horses had galloped on the course proper after extensive drainage and maintenance work was completed earlier this year.

Following the inspection, it was determined that the track had not recovered sufficiently for the  Avondale trials meeting, scheduled  for next Tuesday, to proceed as planned.

With these trials unable to be held at Avondale, the Avondale Jockey Club race meeting on 25 April 2012 will be transferred to another venue. New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing (NZTR) will meet with Avondale Jockey Club officials tomorrow to discuss a revised schedule for a return to racing at Avondale.

The Avondale Jockey Club has not raced on its own track since June 2010, but had recently been allocated a licence to resume racing on Wednesday, 25 April (Anzac Day) and conduct three other mid-week meetings this season.

The Northern Region trials meeting, scheduled for Avondale next Tuesday, 3 April, will now be run by the Whakatane Racing Club at Te Teko. These replace the trials programmed for Te Teko on 10 April 2012.  The Auckland Racing Club will programme an additional set of Northern trials on the inside track at Ellerslie for Tuesday, 10 April.

Chief Stipendiary Steward, Cameron George, was in attendance at today’s Avondale Jumpouts, along with NZTR Venue Inspector, Garry Foskett, and Stipendiary Steward, Alan Coles. Local trainers, including Davina Waddell, along with Stephen McKee and Richard Collett, provided horses for the jumpouts, which had been programmed as a prelude to next week’s scheduled trials meeting.  Jockeys Sam Spratt and Alysha Collett, together with a number of experienced track riders were also present today.

Cameron George reported that the track had raced inconsistently and appeared to be quite deep. The track was also cutting out in places. “It was evident to all parties involved  that the track will benefit by having some more time to consolidate given the extent of the drainage and sand slitting work that had been carried out earlier this year. “

NZTR will confirm arrangements early next week for the Avondale Jockey Club’s 25 April and two mid-week May race meetings and will continue to work with the Club with a view to programming trials and  racing resuming at Avondale once it has been established that the track is ready.

Avondale Jockey Club Secretary, John Craig, said that while the Club was disappointed about not being able to race at Avondale on Anzac day, the correct process was being followed by NZTR. “The Avondale Jockey Club appreciates the support of NZTR, along with the Whakatane and Auckland Racing Clubs to enable the Clubs trials meeting next week to be rescheduled at short notice.”


Enquiries: David Jewell, GM, Racing, NZTR on 027 511 3152