Following a successful test on its course proper on Monday, the Auckland Racing Club have confirmed racing will resume at Ellerslie Racecourse on Saturday Ocotber 27.
Ellerslie has not hosted any race meetings since Auckland Cup Week in March, to allow for a drainage upgrade to its track.
Yesterday, 12 horses guided by senior jockeys in Samantha Spratt, Samantha Collett, Matt Cameron, Opie Bosson, Vinnie Colgan and Shafiq Rusof, galloped in pairs on the course proper in what was the track’s second and final test since work was completed.
All jockeys were unanimous in their praise of the track
“The team at Ellerslie have done a great job,” Matt Cameron said. “The track is in fantastic order and I look forward to racing at Ellerslie next month.”
Also on hand to witness the gallops was experienced stipendiary steward Alan Coles who was pleased with the track surface.
“I had the opportunity to oversee a number of horses, ridden by senior northern jockeys, gallop on the entire width of the racing surface,” Coles said.
“I spoke to each jockey about the track. All were positive. It had a very good sole of grass and the entire track was consistent. They also noted the surface was suitable for a return to racing for the ARC’s next meeting.
“I also feel the track surface is excellent and am confident for the scheduled return to racing at Ellerslie.”
Auckland Racing Club Chief Executive Officer Paul Wilcox was delighted with the feedback from jockeys and officials and is looking forward to racing returning to Ellerslie next month.
“Naturally, we are delighted with the result of this testing and are grateful to have had the support of the senior jockeys, trainers and owners who all helped make this crucial part of the process happen,” he said.
“We have been impressed with how well the track has progressed since the drainage work was completed, but the truth was in how it stood up to testing and I am delighted that it made it through both testing stages to such applause.
“I know I’m not the only one who says they cannot wait to get back racing here in late October.”