The Cobar Miners Race Club committee is gearing up to host their first picnic race meeting on August 27.
While the club has presented an annual TAB race meeting for a number of years, it’s the first time in many years that Cobar will host a picnic meeting.
Club president Jarrod Marsden said picnic race meetings are run in a different format to TAB meetings.
“Picnic meetings are classed as amateur racing as opposed to the professional TAB races we have in May,” Mr Marsden said.
“And while the horses don’t change, the professional jockeys cannot ride.
“There is a group of picnic jockeys who follow the picnic circuit to places like Come-by-Chance, Tottenham, Duck Creek etc.
“We now have a place on that circuit.”
Mr Marsden said the Cobar Miners Race Club had long sought a second meeting to compliment their hugely successful May meeting.
“But we needed a date which didn’t take anything away from the May meeting and wasn’t in the heat of a Cobar summer,” he said.
“We have been lucky enough to secure this August date due to the Marthaguy Picnic Club not being able to form a committee and run a meeting.”
He said they are however not guaranteed to have the date every year.
“If Marthaguy reform we lose the date, but Racing NSW has assured us that if we establish a good meeting we will secure the date on a permanent basis.
“New race dates are all but impossible to get so we are grabbing this chance with both hands,” Mr Marsden said.
He said planning for the picnic meeting is progressing well.
“Punters will be treated to a five race picnic race meeting with a feature “community cup” 1,700m stayers race and the 1,200m open class “Cobar Copper Sprint” as well as a 1,000m maiden, a Class B 1,200m, and a Class B 1,370m.”
He said the committee has purposefully tried to make this meeting different to the corporate tent-style meeting they hold in May.
“We want to establish this meeting as a true family and community event.
“Tents will still be available, but they are very much limited in number to allow room for the Cobar Markets, which will be held at the racetrack during the day with the various food and goods stalls open to all racegoers.”
He said they will still have the usual race day facilities of a TAB, canteen, bar, and the kids jumping castle.
Mr Marsden said it will however definitely not be a “twilight meeting” as some rumours around town have alluded to.
He said it would “cost a small fortune” to install the amount of lights needed to run a twilight meeting
“I think whoever started that rumour doesn’t know the difference between a picnic and a professional meeting and got confused.”