Skip to main navigation Skip to main content

TAB Queensland Racing Carnival a resounding success

21 July 2022

Racing Queensland has rated the first TAB Queensland Racing Carnival without lockdowns or health restrictions since 2019 a solid success, following an increase in wagering turnover and three local Group 1 victories. 

Not only had wagering turnover increased by more than 30% across the Carnival since 2019, but year-on-year wagering across the 10-week program rose 2% once washouts were considered. 

That was despite some of the wettest race days in recent years, no meeting at Doomben for the first time in living memory and the loss of the star-studded Group 1 Doomben Cup Day. 

Betting turnover on the Doomben 10,000 meeting alone, which was transferred to Eagle Farm following the deluge, increased by 14.4% on a year-on-year basis. 

Mazu wins the Doomben 10,000 at Eagle Farm.  

The Queensland Guineas meeting at Eagle Farm also yielded an increase of more than 19%, with wagering turnover rising from $24.6 million in 2021 to $29.4m this year as it continues to grow in popularity. Turnover on the Guineas meeting has increased every year since 2017. 

Queensland Oaks Day was also a notable success this year with turnover jumping from $44.1 million to $48.3 million (+9.3%) and is on the cusp of becoming the third feature race day during Stradbroke Season to record turnover of more than $50m. 

When comparing the first post-pandemic TAB Queensland Racing Carnival to the last pre-pandemic Carnival in 2019, the wagering turnover rose by 33%. 

Since 2019, Hollindale Stakes Day and Queensland Oaks Day increased by 51% and 52% respectively, while other notable gains included the Queensland Derby (+39%), Queensland Guineas (+33%) and Doomben 10,000 meetings (+30%).  

The jewel in Queensland’s Group 1 season, the TAB Stradbroke Handicap, was up $10 million (+21.6%) on 2019, and turnover on the Tatts Tiara increased by almost $8 million (+24%), further reinforcing the quality of the thoroughbreds contesting the Carnival and the strength of the brand to fans. 

Gyspy Goddess takes out the Queensland Oaks. The Oaks is close to becoming the third feature race day to record turnover of more than $50m.  

The Carnival highlights included: 

- Wagering turnover, year-on-year, increased by $6.5 million to $325.4 million; 

- Wagering turnover grew by 2%; 

- Queensland Guineas meeting grew by 19.4% to $29.4 million; 

- Doomben 10,000 meeting turnover grew 11% to $37.4 million; and 

- Wagering turnover grew by 33% from pre-pandemic 2019 to post-pandemic 2022. 

The Tatts Tiara was not only a wagering success but delivered one of the three Queensland-trained thoroughbreds to claim a Group 1 title. 

Startantes capped a great Carnival for locally trained thoroughbreds with a deserved win in the Tatts Tiara, while Apache Chase went from strength to strength, winning the Kingsford Smith Cup and Gypsy Goddess claimed The Oaks.  

Interstate superstar Zaki made it back-to-back Hollindale Stakes titles after a gutsy win, in a race that, for two years straight, has rated above the Group1 benchmark of 115. 

Zaki wins the Group 1 Hollindale Stakes which, as a race, has rated above Group 1 level for two years straight.

“The Hollindale Stakes is close to earning Group 1 status and if granted, it would provide the Carnival with a ninth Group 1 title and the first for the Gold Coast,” said Racing Queensland CEO Brendan Parnell. 

“Betting turnover on Hollindale Stakes Day over the past three years has also risen by more than 50% which is further evidence of the appeal of the race day and Carnival. 

“That was also evident with Oaks Day betting turnover almost breaking $50 million while we were also fortunate with the very quick turnaround by Brisbane Racing Club to save 10,000 Day by staging it at Eagle Farm. 

“Overall, the turnover increase year-on-year and from pre-Covid health measures to post-Covid lifting of restrictions, we have had a pleasing result.” 

Also, worth noting is that Queensland-trained horses won 28 of the 59 black-type races across 10 Carnival race days with more than $21 million in prize money on offer.   

The Battle of the Bush, with record prize money of $200,000 on the Tattersall’s card, provided an incredible crescendo for the highly popular series. 

“With almost half of our black-type races won by Queensland-trained horses, it’s great to see millions of dollars in prize money being shared among Sunshine State owners and trainers,” Mr Parnell said. 

 “It was also a thrill to see so many country trainers and owners at Tatts Tiara Day to enjoy the Battle of the Bush which has become entrenched on the Carnival calendar.” 

BRC CEO Tony Partridge said the wagering figures underlined how successful the changes that were made to the programming had been. 

“On average figures per meeting over Stradbroke Season, 2022 was more than 40 per cent higher than 2019,” Partridge said. 

“It was unfortunate how the long running weather event ruined this year’s Doomben Group 1 double header, but we were so fortunate to have Eagle Farm able to step into the void on Doomben 10,000 day and then a fortnight later, carry a number of the Doomben Cup day features. 

“The renovation to the Eagle Farm course proper, which included line planting of Doomben kikuya grass, have been well documented and it was very pleasing to see punters warm to Eagle Farm for not only 10,000 day, but for the four other days of Group 1 racing during the carnival as well.”