By Anya Whitelaw
The most prizemoney ever offered on a Tyers Park program will be up for grabs next Friday (27th January) when Bathurst Thoroughbred Racing stages its Country Showcase Meeting.
Big name, Jim Cassidy - a man who won 104 Group One races - will be at Tyers Park next week for the rich Country Showcase Meeting. The eight-race program will feature the $50,000 Bathurst Cup, but each race will offer at least $30,000.
It is a move which Bathurst Thoroughbred Racing's GM, Michelle Tarpenning, feels will further enhance the reputation of one of the club’s biggest meetings.
“I am hoping that it is going to be a very strong day of racing. We are very happy to be part of the showcase of racing and privileged as a club to be involved in the lead up to the Championships,” she said.
“For Bathurst to be chosen to host a Country Showcase meeting is a real opportunity and privilege and I believe a testimony that our track is in such great racing condition. Hopefully we’ll get great nominations and acceptances with that prize money and we’ll get full fields.”
If the $275,000 which is up for grabs was not a big enough boost for the meeting in itself, the Bathurst club will have Jim 'Pumper' Cassidy in attendance as well. The man, affectionately known as ‘Pumper’, is one of three jockeys to have ridden 100 Group One winners. His résumé includes a pair of Melbourne Cup victories (1983 Kiwi and 1997 Might And Power), the Caulfield Cup and Cox Plate.
“To have Jim Cassidy as our ambassador is a great coup,” Tarpenning said. “Every year we look to have an ambassador who is an identity in racing and has great stories to tell – he’s a colourful character and a great addition to our day.”
Aside from the 1800-metre Bathurst Cup, the program pays tribute to the racing industry as it includes the Hugh Bowman Cup plus the Bill Aspros and Ida Traill Showcases.
“The Bathurst Cup, we’ve built this day to have a different focus to our biggest meeting the Soldier's Saddle, this day is about the industry, recognising participants, the jockeys, the owners, the trainers,” Tarpenning said.
“It’s a unique sort of day, it’s about the racing and giving recognition to people in the industry who normally don’t get a chance to come out and speak to people. It’s our second biggest day, and we’re looking forward to having a good crowd, who will come join us in not only a great afternoon of racing, but enjoy celebrating the rich history of racing in this region.”
Gates for the meeting will open at 11am.