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CHINESE FESTIVAL OF RACING WELCOMED TO ROYAL RANDWICK

The Australian Turf Club will host the inaugural Chinese Festival of Racing this Saturday, 16 January at Royal Randwick.

Chinese passport holders will gain free entry to the race course with all others able to purchase the Summer Super Saver, where for a $20 ticket, guests will receive $45 worth of value including entry to the racecourse, one standard drink, one Vili’s pie, a $5 TAB voucher and free entry to any other summer race day on the calendar.

Racegoers will be entertained throughout the day by lion dancers, pony rides, feast on traditional cuisine at Chinese food stalls or have a photo with the Chinese “God of Wealth” characters.

The Club will also offer dedicated services for Chinese patrons including Cantonese and Mandarin speaking translators who will be providing behind the scenes guided tours of Royal Randwick, and a translated version of the form guide into simplified Chinese.

Australian Turf Club Chief Operating Officer Tony Partridge said the race day aims to attract a new audience to the track and to build a friendship with the Chinese community in Sydney.

“We are focused on doing a better job of making a race day more relevant and appealing to our Chinese friends,’’ Mr Partridge said.

“The Club is dedicated to putting in place initiatives to encourage members of the Chinese community to attend our race courses as their first option to consume racing, and the inaugural Chinese Festival of Racing is the first step in making this happen.”

On the track, Group 1 winning Rebel Dane (Brenton Avdulla) for Gary Portelli will be conducting an exhibition gallop over 800m following the conclusion of the first race.

Former Miss China International Sarah Song will present the trophy for the feature race on the nine race card, the $85,000 Pingtan Cup, where Lassitude for John O’Shea has opened as the $3.60 TAB Fixed Odds favourite.

The four-year-old showed strong form during his last preparation and will return to the track this weekend following a nine month spell.

Competition will come from Tree of Jesse ($5.00 TAB Fixed Odds) from the James Cummings stable who will be looking for back-to-back wins this start.

Support has also been shown for six-year-old Idance for Team Hawkes following his respectable second place in his last run on 2 January.

The $85,000 Young Farming Champions Handicap has Chris Waller’s Miss Royale heavily favoured at $2.50 with TAB Fixed Odds after running home solidly in her previous two starts.

However all eyes will be on Selita ($4.20 TAB Fixed Odds) for Bjorn Baker to see if the mare can secure her fourth consecutive win despite stepping up in distance.

Nine horses will face the starter in the $85,000 Top Ideal SCM Handicap where Painted Firetail has opened on the first line of betting at $3.40 TAB Fixed Odds in a wide open race. The John O’Shea-trained filly has had two career runs for one win and one place.

Stravago ($5.00 TAB Fixed Odds) for Peter and Paul Snowden will be Painted Firetail’s main competition and is expected to continue his recent strong form of two wins from three starts this campaign.

Gates Open at 11.30am with the first race at 12.40pm.

Royal Randwick offers a bus service running from Eddy Avenue directly to the course, with return services later in the day.

For all ticketing, hospitality, racing and general information visit www.theraces.com.au.

CONTACT: Tracey White 0407 785 994     twhite@australianturfclub.com.au

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