Spring in the air as racing carnival launches

Published: 3 September 2019

Some of racing's biggest names gathered last week to help launch this year's Spring Racing Carnival at South Melbourne venue, Half Acre.

Champion jockeys Damien Oliver, Glen Boss and Michelle Payne, whose greatest feats are linked to the Victorian Spring Racing Carnival, were among the stars gracing the red carpet alongside Gai Waterhouse, whose training feats and personality have made her become known as the 'first lady of Australian racing.'
Awards for the Spring Racing Carnival.The 2019 Victorian Spring Racing Carnival will for the first time offer total prizemoney exceeding $100 million. A record 16 races will offer prizemoney of $1 million or more, culminating with the 159th running of the $8 million Lexus Melbourne Cup at Flemington on Tuesday 5 November.

Through contributions from the Victorian Government, the Victoria Racing Club (VRC) and Racing Victoria, total prizemoney and bonuses on offer across the Spring Racing Carnival has increased by $18 million from 2018 to further strengthen the local and international appeal of the event.

The Spring Racing Carnival welcomed its 250th internationally-trained horse to Victoria last year, with entries from Japan, England, Ireland, Germany and possibly France bound for Melbourne to contest feature races this October and November.

"The Spring Racing Carnival has a rich history and we want racing fans to join us this year in celebrating its greatest moments as we get ready to anoint the stars and create new chapters in Australia's greatest sporting novel," said Racing Victoria Chairman Brian Kluger.

Thoroughbred racing delivers an annual $3.2 billion economic benefit to Victoria, supporting 25,000 equivalent full-time jobs, with the Spring Racing Carnival alone worth $760 million to the state.

Find out more about Victoria's racing industry on our website.