Why ‘delicate’ decision was made to abandon Ipswich meeting
IT was difficult for many punters to understand that the Ipswich races were abandoned on Friday after just 11 millimetres of rain up until 6am that morning.
However, that was the decision taken by the Chairman of Stewards for the day, Chris Albrecht, of the Queensland Racing Integrity Commission (QRIC).
In Albrecht’s opinion, the state of the track would not have allowed any more than one race on the day, and that first race would have only been run if there was no more rain up to that point.
The part of the track that would have been most affected was at the 600 to 300 metre mark, or around the home turn.
On this basis, Albrecht decided at 9.30am to abandon the meeting due to the state of the track and later rain throughout the afternoon vindicated that decision.
That later rain commenced just prior to the scheduled time of the first race and continued throughout the afternoon and into the evening.
The decision to cancel based on just 11mm of rain showed the delicate situation of the course proper at Ipswich – a situation that has been in place for three years since the works of Racing Queensland to level a portion of the track where undulations had developed following the floods of 2011.
The result of those works was a near impervious subsurface of very poor drainage.
This results in water remaining on the surface at times when there is rain on a raceday meaning that a relatively small amount of rain can result in abandonment of a race meeting.
That is what happened in March and again on Friday.
Additionally, the nature of the track has changed dramatically in dry times since the works were completed in 2014.
The track now provides very fast times in dry times as evidenced with a number of class records being run on the two recent meetings of Labour Day and Saturday Legs and Eddies race day whilst there were abandoned meetings a few weeks prior and a couple of weeks after these meetings.
Additionally, the track record times for all distances have been broken at least once soon after the works. These previous records had stood since as long ago as 1982.
11 race card
THE positive news from Friday’s abandoned meeting was the impact on tomorrow’s meeting at Ipswich.
There are 11 races for the day following splitting of two races and the transfer of the three year old 2150 metre race from Friday.
This race has been reduced in size however will continue to provide an opportunity for Oaks and Derby late entry hopefuls.
AS has been somewhat of a pattern over the years, there were again wet conditions for the second Group 1 race of the Queensland Winter Racing Carnival.
The Doomben Cup was run on a heavy track and the winner was Sense of Occasion.
A talking point of the day however was the protest dismissal in the Queensland Oaks lead up race The Roses which was won by favourite Kenedna after interfering with runner up Oklahoma Girl in the straight.
Ipswich Cup interest growing
THE famous Ipswich Cup meeting is less than four weeks away now and again the amazing interest in this unique meeting on the carnival program continues.
There is expected to be 12,000 pre-sold tickets as the Ipswich community continues to support the day with the traditional spirit which has survived the ages.
A couple of package areas have already been sold out and the 2017 edition of the social event of Ipswich again is looking massive.
Ipswich racing is on tomorrow as well as Wednesday, May 31, prior to a break before the Ipswich Cup on June 17.