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The Independent Voice of
Central West Queensland since 1923
Central West Queensland


18 May, 2020

Optimism reigns for Birdsville Races

THE BIRDSVILLE Races have not been cancelled, not yet at least.

By Hamish Hart

Empty barriers... the barriers may not be empty this September as the Birdsville Race Club assures hopeful attendees the iconic outback race meeting has not been cancelled for 2020.

Tickets for the famous event were scheduled to go on sale in early April, but coronavirus concerns have postponed admission sales.

Despite the ongoing delay, the Birdsville Race Club has reiterated that the September 4 to 5 outback races have not been cancelled and a decision regarding this year’s event has not been formally made.

Vice-president of the club, Gary Brook, said the committee remained hopeful the race meeting would be held and would abide by all Covid-19 guidelines applicable at the time.

“We don’t have blinkers on,” Mr Brook said. “We appreciate there’s still a lot of hoops to jump through, but with infection rates starting to hit zero in some States, and Australia’s international borders closed, we remain hopeful we will be on a winner and able to run the Birdsville Races this year.

“If sufficient notice is given that it’s safe to go ahead, and large gatherings and travel is permitted, we hope to hold the event.

“It’s nice to hang onto that hope both for us, racing participants, and the small towns and tourism operators who rely on outback tourism to say afloat. We will give ourselves every opportunity and the last thing we want to do is jump too early.

“We are in consultation with the Queensland Government and Racing Queensland, and all are supportive of our position. Unless you hear otherwise from us, the Birdsville Races are still on the calendar. We are considering all options as to how the races may proceed.”

Further announcements regarding the sale of tickets and staging of the 2020 Birdsville Races will be made as soon as possible.

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