Flemington racecourse will be home to one of Australia’s premier owners and trainers’ facilities thanks to a joint investment by the State Government and the Victoria Racing Club (VRC).
Premier and Minister for Racing Denis Napthine today announced funding for the $1.2 million upgrade, which includes constructing a new owners and trainers’ facility in the undercroft area of the members grandstand; refurbishing the existing winning owners’ facilities; and relocating the raceday and ticketing office to the Heritage Centre near the main car park entrance.
“The value of racehorse owners, estimated to be in excess of 35,000, to our state’s racing industry and its ongoing prosperity cannot be overstated,” Dr Napthine said
“It is important to recognise this by providing high-quality services and facilities that reflect our appreciation of their significant investment, which leads to many hundreds of millions of dollars of economic benefit to Victoria.
“The owners and trainers’ facility will provide a much larger space than the existing venue, as well as better views over the racecourse and easier patron access.
"The new facility will be an enormous improvement on the current cramped facility and will greatly enhance the raceday experience for those who buy and invest in Victorian racing. This includes the large number of owners now involved in racehorse ownership through syndication,” Dr Napthine said.
VRC CEO David Courtney thanked the Victorian Government for its ongoing support of racing at Flemington.
“Premier Napthine has championed the racing industry since coming to office, and this is another example of the government working with Victorian clubs to support industry participants at every level,” Mr Courtney said.
“The VRC is proud to offer an improved space specifically for some of racing’s most important supporters, that is, the owners. We look forward to the owners and trainers’ facility becoming a hub of activity and celebration on raceday.”
Victorian Thoroughbred Racehorse Owners Association chairman Jonathan Munz said the new facility would be a showpiece for Flemington.
"The TROA has pushed very hard for improved raceday facilities and this new owners and trainers’ facility at Flemington will provide much more room, as well as better and extended access for owners,” Mr Munz said.
“The Victoria Racing Club is developing this new facility with the help and encouragement of the Victorian Government and Racing Victoria, and will set the benchmark for new facilities elsewhere."
Dr Napthine said the government was committed to ensuring Victoria’s racing industry continues to grow and provide economic and social benefits to the community.
The government's investment in this new facility is through the $79.5 million Victorian Racing Industry Fund, which is derived from unclaimed dividends, that is, winning Victorian totalisator bets not collected by punters.