Track Watch: Afflick’s race day tomorrow

TOMORROW the Moruya Jockey Club hosts its last meeting before Christmas, Afflick’s Race Day, and what a wonderful day at the track it is going to be. 

Don and Sheila Afflick’s names were synonymous with Moruya racing for decades, indeed generations, and this historical annual meeting in their memory is truly a community event to which we all look forward to with anticipation. 

Final fields for the five-event non-TAB meeting are not yet declared at the time of writing but nominations received by the club from both our local and visiting trainers for all races have been strong and it’s shaping up to be an exciting day of highly competitive racing with plenty of good value in the punting department. 

It’s a particularly special day for the Moruya Jockey Club as a large number of racing dignitaries, headed by Naseema Sparks, the deputy chairwoman of the Racing NSW board, Peter V’landys, Racing NSW chief executive officer and the chairman of Country Racing NSW Bob Pavit, will be in attendance for the official opening of the new facilities at the track, and I’m sure everyone will give them all a very warm welcome. 

What a great opportunity it is for us all to showcase to our important visitors that Moruya racing is alive and well and on a continuing upward spiral at the picturesque and family-friendly course, seen by all as our premier social and sporting venue. 

Good weather is all we’re praying for to make it another perfect day at the track. 

The Moruya Jockey Club’s poster for the meeting appearing on page 33 of today’s edition details the co-sponsors for the day, as well as contact details for the dedicated race-day bus services from Batemans Bay and Tuross Head. 

You will also note that the ever-popular Fashions on the Field contests for ladies, gents and kids will be conducted with plenty of great prizes up for grabs as usual. 

Gates open at 11am with the first race set to jump at 1.25pm and I look forward to seeing you all there for this great community event. 

Racing returns to the Moruya track in the new year for the big Narooma Cup meeting on Monday, January 7, and then the time-honoured Moruya Cup meeting on Monday, January 21. 

It’s been a relatively quiet week for Moruya gallopers in the lead-up to tomorrow’s meeting, with six runners stepping out at last Saturday’s Gundagai TAB meeting, unfortunately without success. 

Matthew Stephen’s Olympian was our only runner to make the trip to last Saturday’s non-TAB meeting at Adaminaby, where he also failed to flatter. 

Matthew has our only nomination in for next Sunday’s Goulburn Cup meeting, that being Intimate Kingdom in the class one (1400m) event, and I hope he gets to run after his very strong late-finishing fourth at Queanbeyan two weeks ago over the same distance. 

Today racing returns to Wagga Wagga for an eight-race program with four runners from Luke Pepper’s stable and one from Mike Gatty’s stable taking part in proceedings. 

Mike’s Rush To Judgement lines up in race three, the maiden plate over 1400m, and Luke’s Not On Monday and Total Image, a last-start winner, jump in race four, a class one mile. 

Luke’s Magic Franco is back from a spell in race six, a class two sprint and Gregory’s Fortress takes on a maximum field in race seven, a benchmark 60 (1400m) handicap. 

I was delighted to see Jessie Whipp back in the race-day saddle this week. She had two rides at the city mid-week meeting held at Gosford on Wednesday, both mounts for Mark De Montfort’s stable, but both were unable to find a placing in their respective events. 

I’m even more delighted that Jessie will be returning to her home track at Moruya tomorrow for several rides and we’ll all be cheering her on. 

Until next week, good luck and good punting.

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