The Brisbane Racing Club will rely on the performances of superstars Winx and Redzel when it promotes next year’s winter racing carnival to interstate and international trainers.
For the third time in four years the majority of the winter carnival will be run at Doomben because Queensland’s main track at Eagle Farm will be closed until at least September.
Eagle Farm’s course proper was originally closed in September 2014 for reconstruction and was reopened for a nine-month period in 2016/17.
It was closed again on May 27 when it became evident the track was not up to standard.
After a report from former Victorian racing administrator Dale Monteith, remedial work was ordered on the track and it was expected to be ready in April.
The work has been hit by delays and the decision was made several weeks ago that Eagle Farm would not be ready for the winter carnival.
That decision could not be made public until a new cabinet was sworn in because the Queensland government was in caretaker mode for an election.
All turf has been removed from Eagle Farm and work on the sub-profile has been completed and grass should be laid by the end of the month.
The delay has allowed the BRC to prepare to promote another Doomben-centred winter carnival.
All Group One races are expected to be at Doomben – the Stradbroke, Doomben 10,000, Queensland Derby, Queensland Oaks, J J Atkins, Doomben Cup and Kingsford Smith Cup.
There will be three consecutive weekends of racing at Doomben in May before the track is given a rest until Stradbroke Day in June.
The other meeting will be at the Sunshine Coast, where races such as the O’Shea Stakes and BRC Cup will be run.
BRC chairman Neville Bell said Doomben had performed well as a carnival track.
“The carnival is always the nursery for future champions. The Doomben 10,000 winner Redzel went on to win the Everest and Darley Classic in the south,” Bell said.
“Champion mare Winx won her first Group One in Queensland Oaks when it was held at Doomben over 2200 metres.
“Of course they aren’t the only future stars to come through the Doomben meetings.”