Four Central Queensland race clubs will share in nearly $700,000 worth of Palaszczuk Government infrastructure.
The big winner will be the Emerald Jockey Club, which is receiving $470,000 for a new racecourse mower, fertilising and spraying equipment, an irrigation upgrade and tie-up stalls.
Bluff Blackwater Amateur Race Club will receive nearly $200,000 for a new public address system, perimeter fencing for the horse float area and to refurbish its tie-up stalls.
Yeppoon Turf Club will receive $40,000 to upgrade its chute and Clermont Race Club will receive $10,000 for fencing upgrade.
“Racing is part of our region’s economy as well as community life, especially in some of our smaller and more isolated towns,” said Keppell MP, Brittany Lauga.
“Apart from supporting local clubs and improving facilities for trainers, jockeys, owners and racegoers, these grants will generate work for local tradies in these communities.”
The upgrades are part of $2.8 million worth of grants being distributed statewide to some of Queensland’s smallest and most remote country race clubs.
Yeppoon Turf Club spokesperson Mary Hornery said government grant money was fundamental to the ongoing survival of country race clubs.
“We only raise money three times per year, so we would never be able to generate that kind of capital to maintain our facilities,” she said.
“Grants are where we get most of our money. Without it we couldn’t survive.”
Racing Minister Grace Grace announced the grants to 37 country clubs from Mareeba in the Far North to Betoota in the south-west.
“The Palaszczuk Government’s Country Racing Program provides critical infrastructure funding across the state to improve and enhance our non-TAB racing clubs and their communities,” Ms Grace said.
“These are some of the state’s smallest and most remote clubs, and importantly, these projects will create work for local tradies and businesses.”
The Palaszczuk Government has committed a total of $105.6 million to country racing over six years.
This includes funds for non-TAB clubs for infrastructure repairs and maintenance projects.
“Our Country Racing Program provides security and continuity to the country racing community up to 2023 by funding race meetings, prize money and racing infrastructure, repairs and maintenance,” Ms Grace said.