POVERTY Bay Turf Club hosted a festival of horse racing and trackside entertainment yesterday at Makaraka Racecourse.
With temperatures reaching 30 degrees, Gisborne people came out in their summer best and enjoyed a day of racing and socialising.
And Poverty Bay Turf Club is celebrating the perfect day of racing and family events at a sunbaked Makaraka Racecourse after yesterday’s meeting.
Club president Alan Davidson said he was delighted with the success of the meeting, which was part of the Interislander Summer festival.
The crowd was about 2500, slightly better than last year. The club aimed for a family atmosphere, with children’s events, an inter-gender tug of war, pony races and a competition for a $500 Interislander pass.
That helped to create a positive atmosphere. People were cheering in the tug of war, particularly when the girls won. He said he hoped that theme would continue in the future.
The meeting went ahead without major incident and tote staff coped with long queues of punters.
The only problem came when the main screen failed for three races because of a generator fault. Mr Davidson said he was impressed that it was fixed so quickly.
Official turnover figures were not available but he understood the crucial on-course figure was higher.
A change in gear proved the answer for Lady Guinness, the winner of the main race of the day, the $30,000 Poverty Bay Gold Cup.
Trainer Patrick Campbell said the four-year-old mare had proved hard to handle at her last start at Tauherenikau, when she threw away her advantage in the straight.
This time Campbell opted for a one-cup blinker and she ran straight as a gun barrel to the line to hold out Tavigarde,
which was trying to give the powerful Rogerson stable its fourth win of the day.
Campbell praised the winning ride of apprentice Sam Weatherley, who judged the speed nicely in front of her. Lady Guinness is raced by a large syndicate who lease the mare from Windsor Park Stud and could now be aimed at a black type assignment in the autumn.
Duke Street and Jodan Nason are the early leaders as the field sweeps around the first curve of the 2000 metre Matawhero Wines 2000 at the Gisborne races yesterday. Duke Street held on for second place. Pictures by Paul Rickard
FASHION IN FIELD: Last year’s winners of the Fashion in the Field competition, business owner Juana Vincent and district councillor Shannon Dowsing, pictured with former supermodel Kylie Bax (centre). This year Juana is getting behind a campaign in town around shopping locally and entering in the fashion competition at the races next month. File picture
Lady Guinness, ridden by Sam Weatherley, wins the $30,000 Jon Snow Poverty Bay Cup, the feature race of the Poverty Bay Turf Club meeting at Makaraka Racecourse yesterday. Tavigarde, ridden by Chris Johnson, was second and Pasabahce, with Ryan Elliott in the saddle, third.
Lady Guinness and Sam Weatherley after the race. The victorious combination paid $8.70 for the win and $2.80 for the place. Weatherley also picked up a second and a third placing over the nine races.
There was a fine line-up of splendidly dressed women for the Fashion in the Field competition. Outfits included summer dresses in floral prints and bright colours, a pantsuit and, of course, hats, which suitably impressed the judges.
The public had the chance to see the horses up close as they were walked around the show ring behind the main grandstand.
It was a battle of the sexes as boys took on girls in a tug of war contest. The girls had strength in numbers in this duel. A giant bouncy castle and slide and face-painting added to the family-friendly atmosphere of a day at the races.
The boys did their best but not everyone can be a winner on race day.
Ella-Jay Semmens enjoys a hula hoop.
Powerball and Sarah MacNab win the Vintech Pacific 1400.
Carl Kerstens, Sue King, Peter Cunningham, Leanne Clarke, Angus Glengarry and Sue Clarke find some shade.
Robyn Barker, George Horsfall and Amy-Kelly Horsfall get into the swing of race day.
Paige Deans, Chloe Law, Julian Walford and Ethan Cook cool off.
Anaya Blank, Mikah Blank and Rosie Sutherland relax.
Back: O'lah Coleman, Lottie Davies, Joe Fysh, Jakahn Mccvar-Marino, Nalley Marino, Ayva Marino, Amelia Reid, Tv'e Marino. Front: Sasha Coleman, Ashtyn Tamanui.
Races - Krystal Cookson, Jasmine Sargent, Tessa Beattie, Huzzy Husband, Anna Beattie, Hannah Davison, Jamie Francis
Eskimo Kiss and Alysha Collett win the Gisborne Refrigeration 2000.
Braxton, Tony, and Acacia Ngaronoa and Bridget Light.
Racegoers watch the action.
Saignon and Chris Johnson win the Donaldson's Plumbing 1200 from Culzean and Samantha Collett, and Ichiban and Rosie Meyers.