Increased prizemoney bolsters future of Corbould Park
SUNSHINE Coast Turf Club CEO John Miller says recent prizemoney increases to the state's racing industry has instilled plenty of confidence for the future of the complex, so much so that some "pretty big plans” are in the works at Corbould Park.
After frustration over a new betting tax led to state-wide strike action last month, the Queensland Government announced it would increase thoroughbred racing prizemoney by $26 million.
Of that, provincial meetings at the Sunshine Coast, Gold Coast and Ipswich will benefit from an increase of $6.9 million.
It was a decision that not only bolstered the futures of trainers, jockeys and those at the coalface, but one that would also have positive flow-on effects for the Corbould Park track according to Miller.
Those benefits would be seen today, with connections fighting for an extra $2500 in each race as part of the club's Melbourne Cup meet.
He said it was not only boosted incentive for owners, trainers and jockeys to hit the track, but for clubs to plan long-term and invest back into the industry.
"The increase in prizemoney is a huge boost because I know with our trainers, and we've got nearly 60 odd trainers here who use the facility, that if it didn't increase their whole business model was getting pretty dire,” he said.
"So that (funding injection) now gives us a lot more confidence going forward and we've got some pretty big plans to redo our synthetic track and upgrade our other training tracks and hopefully build some more on-course stabling in the next couple of years.”
Corbould Park is one of the busiest in the state, hosting more than 70 meets a year.
It's also been the beneficiary of extra metropolitan meets in the past 12months due to Eagle Farm being out of action.
Miller said hosting the lucrative meets had been one of many highlights for him in the past 17months as CEO.
"It's been a real bonus for the club,” he said.
"We're pretty confident in our track and facilities to conduct metropolitan quality race meetings so when given the opportunity it's something we certainly embrace.”