Financial boost for the bush
Horse racing: Country racing has been given a major boost, with Racing New South Wales announcing a prizemoney increase for select meetings.
From January 1, non-TAB and Country Sky 2 race meetings will benefit from a 25-per cent increase in minimum prize money.
This means prizemoney at non-TAB meetings will jump from $6000 to $8000 and Country Sky 2 meetings will go from $10,000 to $12,000.
Coffs Harbour Racing Club CEO Tim Saladine said it's a great injection for the local industry.
"I'm over the moon for the owners and trainers, it's great for the grassroots of racing,” Saladine said.
"It certainly impacts us and our participants.”
Saladine said he would certainly love prizemoney to be even greater, but the level it's sitting at now is fair.
Saladine pointed to the coming showcase meeting as an example.
"We have a meeting on December 13 with every race worth $30,000... $240,000 on a Thursday in Coffs is unheard of,” he said.
"So I think the city, provincial and country levels of prizemoney are pretty adequate at the moment.”
Racing NSW Chairman Russell Balding said the industry is crucial to many towns around the state.
"Racing is very important in these regional and remote areas and we want to ensure they are viable and continue to provide entertainment and a social outlet for these communities,” he said.