Punters, drivers and horses enjoyed the new track and facilities at the Stawell Harness Racing Club on Wednesday.
After major redevelopments of the track, the camber and the fencing, racegoers were treated to a great day of racing.
Stawell Harness Racing Club Chief Executive Officer Lisa Lisa McIlvride said it was a terrific occasion.
“The day was great all round.
“We had some really good racing, and a few track records broken,” she said.
With no rain and the sun out all day, fans were able to enjoy the new track at its best.
“We had so many people in the bistro at one point we nearly ran out of food,” McIlvride said.
“It was really the perfect day for racing.”
Members of the Mcleod family attended the day to see the running of the James and Judith Mcleod memorial races.
Big Gun Johnny and Plain Baby were the respective winners of those races.
McIlvride said all the industry professionals, including drivers, were positive about the tracks upgrades.
“All the drivers were happy with the surface and the camber.
“There was no dust, which is a massive improvement from what we had in the past,” she said.
10 races were run for the day, with nine and 10 carriages in each race.
There were only four scratchings for the whole day.
McIlvride said she is grateful for the financial support the club received.
“A big thank you to the Victorian state government and the HRV for all their support with these upgrades.
“We would not have been able to do it without them,” she said.
The redevelopment cost $546,000, with the Stawell Harness Racing Club contributing $182,000.
The upgrade saw a major redevelopment to multiple parts of the club, including the track, the fence and camber.
The improved track surface sees a significantly less amount of dust flicked up, making racing safer for both horses and drivers.
The camber of the track was also increased, resulting in record times seen on Wednesday.
A new fence was also put up to improve viewing for all spectators, and to increase safety.
McIlvride said punters can expect a higher quality of racing at Stawell.
Stawell will host the Ray Martin Memorial on Wednesday, June 7.
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