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Distance change for flagship Wellington Cup

Media Release One
9 December 2008
Distance change for flagship Wellington Cup

A controversial change in distance for the Club’s time honoured feature the Century City Developments Wellington Cup and the inaugural running of the Group One Telegraph Handicap for a stake of $1 million has everyone talking about the Century City Developments 2009 Wellington Cup Carnival.

The $350,000 Century City Developments 2009 Wellington Cup has had a change in distance from 3200 metres to 2400 metres as a result of the decision of the New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing’s Graded Stakes Committee’s decision to downgrade the race from Group One to Group Two status earlier this year.

The Wellington Cup, which was first staged in 1874, has previously been run at 2400 metres between 1890 to 1941, before the distance was increased to 3200m.

New trends
Wellington Racing Club President, Mike Brown, says the move to reduce the distance of the Cup this year reflects international breeding trends and the pattern of racing that has developed in recent years.

“The Auckland Racing Club’s decision to transfer their 3200 metre Auckland Cup from New Year’s Day to early March has had an impact on the Wellington Cup. The Committee is confident that by reducing the Wellington Cup distance to 2400 metres this will strengthen the Cup by improving the quality of our flagship race and ensure the ongoing success of Wellington Cup Day at Trentham.”

Mr Brown says with 2009 Century City Developments Wellington Cup runners now starting at the top of the Trentham straight, directly in front of the more than 25,000 racegoers expected to once again pack the racecourse, the start of the 2009 Wellington Cup promises to be an even more spectacular sight for the public with 18 horses charging down the straight in front of the crowd..

Increased nominations
The Wellington Racing Club is delighted with the 30% increase in the number of early nominations received for the 2009 Wellington Cup field. Leading Australian trainer David Hayes has nominated two Australian horses for the race.

The Australian horses face a race against time to be here for the Wellington Cup Carnival. With 11 Australian sprinters nominated for the $1m Telegraph Handicap on the first day of the Carnival, Wellington Racing Club officials are hoping that New Zealand and Australian officials may be able to lift the existing quarantine barriers that restrict the movement of horses between Australia and New Zealand.

The quarantine restrictions that were introduced when the EI (Equine Influenza) outbreak occurred in Australia in 2007 is expected to be removed in January 2009. Unfortunately, this may not happen in time for the upcoming Wellington Cup carnival meeting.

A substantial increase in prizemoney for a number of New Zealand’s major races including the Wellington Racing Club’s Group One Telegraph Handicap resulted in 42 overseas entries being received for the upcoming Wellington and Auckland Summer Carnivals.

Takeover Target a possibility

Heading the list of overseas entries is the multiple Group One winner sprinter Takeover Target, who has amassed over $6million in prizemoney. Takeover Target returned to racing in Perth, Australia last week with an impressive win in the $400,000 Winterbottom Stakes.

This was his first appearance since racing in England in June. Takeover Target has raced successfully in England, Japan and Singapore. Trainer Joe Janick is resigned to not being able to get his champion sprinter to New Zealand in January due to the quarantine restrictions but has indicated that he would love to have the opportunity to race for the $1 million prize on offer at Trentham if the restrictions were to be lifted in time to make the trip.


KEY FACTS 2009 Century City Developments Wellington Cup Carnival:

• Group One Telegraph Handicap on first day of the carnival (Saturday 17 January) has had an in increase in prizemoney from $250,000 (2008) to $1 million in 2009.

This is a New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing and Government initiative to target a number of selected New Zealand major races to boost profile of the thoroughbred racing industry and attract overseas participation at the major carnivals. To date 11 Australian based horses have been nominated for the Telegraph Handicap, now New Zealand’s richest sprint race.

• Wellington Racing Club is offering total prizemoney of $2.55 million across the three days of the Century City Developments 2009 Wellington Cup Carnival.

• Over 40,000 patrons are expected to attend the three days racing at Trentham.

• Wellington Cup Day is New Zealand Thoroughbred Racings biggest raceday of the year in terms of attendance, oncourse and TAB offcourse turnover.

• The Wellington Cup is to be run over a distance of 2400m in 2009 having traditionally been run over 3200m (two miles).

Media Release Two
9 December 2008
Million Dollar Day kicks off
Wellington Cup Carnival

Racing will vie with entertainment for race-goers of all ages throughout the three days of January’s 2009 Century City Developments Wellington Cup Carnival, according to Wellington Racing Club president, Mike Brown.

“Trentham is the venue for the biggest party of the New Year and the 2009 carnival promises to be the best yet”.

Wellington Anniversary Weekend opens with the Trentham Music, Wine and Racing Festival on Saturday 17 January and features the Club’s first one million dollar race, the Telegraph Handicap.

A wine village comprising 15 boutique wineries will sell a range of quality wines to accompany a varied food selection from La Bella Italia, CrazyHorse The Steak House, paella and whitebait fritters. Special marquee classroom sessions will offer wine-tasting master classes under the guidance of celebrated international winemaker and viticulturist, Peter Caldwell. Classes include: Pinot for Princesses; Wine for Blokes; The Great Wine Club Taste Off; and Champagne for Champions.

Crowd favourite Hot Club Sandwich will play live music throughout the day with the showcase act being multi-instrumentalist and kiwi jazz sensation, Nathan Haines.

On Anniversary Monday, 19 January, the racecourse takes on a jungle theme for Summer Carnival Family Day Races. The Funky Monkeys will be on stage performing free family concerts. A favourite of adults and children alike, the Dress Smart Kids Fashion in the Field returns with jungle-themed categories and a special mad hatters section.

Mike Brown says the entire racecourse will be a safe and family-friendly environment with all entertainment free for children.

“Many of today’s parents will have wonderful childhood memories of family outings and picnics at Trentham race meetings We want to recapture this and provide today’s young families with a fun day out, full of entertainment and a day that is very affordable.”

The following Saturday, 24 January, is Century City Developments Wellington Cup Day and Mike Brown and his team put together the party that will welcome 25,000 race-goers dressed for success to a Trentham festooned with hospitality marquees.

“The Wellington Cup is the Club’s flagship race, and Cup Day is New Zealand Thoroughbred Racings biggest raceday of the year in terms of attendance, oncourse and TAB offcourse turnover. We plan to keep it that way,” he says.

Media Release Three
9 December 2008

BMW 3 series convertible for supreme fashion winner

While style and elegance will undoubtedly apply to the Supreme Winner of the Century City Developments 2009 Fashion in the Field competition; it will also apply to his or her prize of an all-new BMW 3 Series Convertible.

Valued at $103,000 the Black Sapphire, high spec, black leather-upholstered convertible -courtesy of Jeff Gray BMW - will be the mode of transport for the Supreme Winner for a year and competition for the keys will be strong.

The fashion conscious of Wellington are currently eyeing the pre-Christmas sales at stores throughout the region eager to express their style and fashion sense, as well as common sense.

Image consultant, Samantha Hannah, last year’s Supreme Winner and this year sponsor of the Couple of the Carnival category, says high fashion doesn’t need to be highly priced.

“Vintage, retro, pre-loved, recycled, second hand are all fabulous words in fashion at the moment. There are such stores in most cities and towns where the owners do all the hard work by locating and stocking their shops with the most stunning dresses in bright and bold fabrics or lace; dresses ready to be treasured all over again.

“Rustle through your wardrobe and locate that amazing dress you had a few seasons back and alter the neckline or sleeves, shorten it, or lengthen it with contrast fabric. My dress from last year was actually one I found in my mother-in-law’s closet and which cost just $50 to recut and style into a winning outfit.”

Samantha’s top hint relates to accessories.

“An existing outfit can take on a totally different look with new and stylish accessories. It is worth being adventurous and splashing out on fashionable new shoes, hat and hand-bag. Even if your friends recall the dress, but they will be bowled over by how clever you are to have created such a super new look,” says Samantha Hannah.

Other categories in the Fashion in the Field competition include: Contemporary Lady of the Carnival; LifePharmacy Queensgate Classic Lady of the Carnival; Rembrandt Man of
the Carnival; and Robyn Mathieson Designer of the Carnival.

Judges this year are: fashion stylist, Ingrid Vink; award-winning hair stylist, Michael Beel; fashion designer, Annah Stretton; Wellington ‘it girl’, Paula Muollo; and a celebrity surprise.

Information about the 2009 competition and the prizes can be accessed from the Wellington Racing Club website Fashion in the Field entrants can also register on the day, before 11 am.

Racegoers who prefer to view the catwalk action can reserve tables in the exclusive Century City Developments Fashion Village for the day. Fashion Village tickets provide entry to the racecourse, reserved car parking, a complimentary bottle of bubbles per table and Ruth Pretty luncheon catering. A table for six in the Fashion Village costs $750 (inc GST) and the venue is expected to be popular.


© Scoop Media

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