‘Racing fatigue’ rubs out another Queensland race as officials concede state has been overwhelmed by meetings
RACING Queensland boss Darren Condon concedes the industry may be suffering from “racing fatigue’’ after the cancellation of a $65,000 Saturday race which attracted just three nominations.
Officials had no option to scrap the 2200m Handicap scheduled for the Gold Coast meeting this Saturday with Black Ninja, Falklands and Volkhere the only nominations.
The Gold Coast card is the main meeting in southeast Queensland on Saturday with no meeting in Brisbane.
Officials have added an extra sprint race to Saturday’s program, but it is an extraordinary situation that they were forced into cancelling a race.
Recent prizemoney increases in Queensland should be enticing more trainers and owners to send their horses to race day.
Condon says officials thought on their feet by adding an extra race on Saturday and points to the fact the new race attracted 21 nominations.
But he admits the cancellation of the 2200m race is probably a sign the Queensland industry has been overwhelmed by meetings during recent months.
“We ran more race meetings that any other state in Australia over the Victorian spring carnival,’’ Condon said.
“On Melbourne Cup Day we ran 12 race meetings across Queensland while Victoria ran seven.
“There is probably a bit of fatigue among the (Queensland) horse racing population over that.
“We have to take some criticism that the programming may not have been right, but we are continuing to review everything we are doing.
“If we program less race meetings, that ultimately just means we are cancelling more races.
“If the product is not there for the races we have advertised, we will put other races on and see if those are more popular.’’
Port Macquarie trainer Marc Quinn had Falklands in the cancelled race and says it is “pretty frustrating’’ he is now forced to instead send his gelding around in an 1800m race on Saturday.
Quinn says there are few options for his horse, with Sydney’s middle-distance staying races being dominated by large nominations from the all-powerful Chris Waller stable.