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RQ to showcase grassroot stars

The 2020 TAB Queensland Winter Harness Racing Carnival will ‘showcase’ the country’s grassroot stars with the introduction of an exciting new $20,000 Final.

For the first time, Racing Queensland will introduce the Garrard’s Showcase, which will provide qualifiers from regional shows with the opportunity to win their way into the Winter Carnival.

In a concept mirroring the highly successful TAB Battle of the Bush for thoroughbreds, the Showcase will see horses qualify via the show circuit from February to May before contesting the $20,000 Final at the Redcliffe feature night in June.

The Showcase qualifiers will be staged at:

  • February 14-16: Clifton;
  • March 20-22: Warwick;
  • March 26-28: RASQ Toowoomba;
  • April 18: Nanango;
  • May 2 - 3: Kingaroy (TBC)
  • May 8-9: Marburg;
  • May 14-16: Gympie; and
  • May 29-30: Boonah.

“Show racing plays an important role in the Queensland harness racing industry headlined by the annual races conducted at the Ekka,” RQ General Manager Corporate Affairs and Policy Mary Collier said.

“Not only does it provide racing opportunities for grassroot participants, it extends the racing life of many standardbreds and ‘showcases’ the sport to new audiences.”

In addition to the prize money, the winning connections of the Showcase will receive a free service to Burwood Stud’s Changeover courtesy of Garrard’s, while they will also supply the winning trainer with a $1000 Garrard’s voucher and all other finalists with a $100 voucher.

“The Garrard’s Showcase is an exciting addition to the Winter Carnival and will provide participants with the added incentive to win their way into a feature event on a Group 1 night,” Ms Collier said.

“We believe it will quickly become one of the highlights on the Queensland harness racing calendar.”

Racing Queensland is expected to make further announcements in relation to the Winter Carnival in the New Year.