Race dates for all three racing codes in Tasmania have been finalised for the 2016/17 racing season.
The schedule provides for:
- Sixty-five thoroughbred meetings, 82 harness meetings and 161 greyhound meetings.
- Maintaining a Friday twilight Tasmanian Derby / Bow Mistress meeting on 3 February and running the Luxbet Hobart Cup on Sunday 5 February.
- Running the Luxbet Launceston Cup on Wednesday 22 February.
- Moving all thoroughbred meetings exclusively to Tapeta Park during August for the traditional winter series.
- Twenty-two thoroughbred night meetings between 5 October 2016 and 12 April 2017.
- Eleven country harness meetings to be conducted, with the St Marys meeting to be conducted on New Year’s Eve rather than New Year’s Day (which is a Sunday and clashes with ongoing commitments).
- The Tasmania Cup meeting at Elwick on Sunday 18 December.
- Twenty-two Friday night harness meetings programmed statewide.
- The running of the Hobart Thousand final on Thursday 22 December.
Tasracing chief executive officer Eliot Forbes said the race dates, which were still subject to Sky Channel approval, had been finalised after consultation with Tasmanian racing clubs.
Dr Forbes said the 2017 Hobart Cup meeting would be held on Sunday 5 February.
“Because Royal Hobart Regatta Day is too close to Launceston Cup day next year, the schedule would have been too condensed, so the decision was taken to bring the Hobart Cup meeting forward a week,” he said.
“Hobart Cup day will revert to its traditional schedule around Regatta Day weekend in 2018.”
Dr Forbes welcomed the opportunity to program more Friday night meetings for the harness code next season.
“We have been working closely with Tabcorp and are very pleased to see the addition of more Friday night harness meetings for the coming year,” he said.