Racing riches up for grabs at Bathurst meet: $100,000 in prizemoney

BIG BUCKS: Bathurst MP Paul Toole and Ali Webster from Bathurst Thoroughbred Racing at Friday's announcement that Bathurst will host a final of the Central District Region Country Championships Final on March 16 next year.                          082814turf2

BIG BUCKS: Bathurst MP Paul Toole and Ali Webster from Bathurst Thoroughbred Racing at Friday's announcement that Bathurst will host a final of the Central District Region Country Championships Final on March 16 next year. 082814turf2

THOROUGHBRED racing in Bathurst is set to have its biggest payday in the history of the sport in the region.

This follows Friday's announcement that $100,000 would be made available to Bathurst Thoroughbred Racing to host the inaugural Central District Region Country Championships Final on March 16.

First and second placegetters in the race will qualify for a chance to run in the $300,000 final at Royal Randwick on the first day of The Championships 2015 in April.

Runners coming in third and fourth will be reserves for the rich final. 

Bathurst MP Paul Toole said the event would be a key attraction for the region and encouraged the community to support the race. 

"The $100,000 Bathurst race is for horses trained in the region," he said.

"This is a great initiative by Racing NSW in partnership with the NSW government and provides an incredible opportunity to showcase the incredible talent of our regionally-trained horses to a wider audience in Sydney.

"I'm thrilled the Bathurst Turf Club has been selected by Racing NSW as one of seven tracks to host a regional qualifying race and I look forward to the community getting behind this exciting initiative and enjoying the race."

In addition to the Bathurst event, regional qualifying races will be held at Wagga Wagga, Goulburn, Port Macquarie, Dubbo, Tamworth and Grafton.

Mr Toole said the opportunity to race in the final at Royal  Randwick was one most owners and trainers in the region would only dream of.

"We're talking big bikkies here and no doubt a win in the Bathurst final, or even the $300,000 final in Sydney, could be life-changing for those concerned," he said.

Ali Webster from Bathurst Thoroughbred Racing said she was elated with the announcement.

"Prizemoney of that stature means this race meeting will be high profile and well promoted," she said.

"It also means there's potential to have a bumper crowd on hand as well as giving us another major event on the club's calendar along with the Soldier's Saddle."

Bathurst track manager Adrian Miller believes a $100,000 prize purse has never been offered locally.

"Everyone would love to be able to take it home, so there will be plenty of interest in getting a horse into the field for the event."

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