Eagle Farm closer to re-opening

Queensland racing officials have been conducting tours of the newly laid Eagle Farm racetrack and are hopeful a horse can gallop on the track before the end of the year.

Eagle Farm was closed in May last year to undergo remedial work after originally being shut for two years for major renovations in 2014.

Doomben has carried the workload for much of the past four years and has held up well.

But the industry is desperate for a return to the state’s biggest and most popular track.

Brisbane Racing Club and Racing Queensland staff took about a dozen trainers on an inspection of the track last week and BRC members have been invited to see the track in a walk-through on Thursday.

The secretary of the Queensland branch of the Australian Trainers Association, Cameron Partington, said the trainers were generally positive about the track.

Former Flemington track manager Mick Goodie has been helping with the Eagle Farm track and was on hand to answer questions.

“Mick Goodie is confident the track will succeed. Many questions were asked all of which had adequate answers,” Partington said.

“The front straight has been down a lot longer and has about 80 millimetres of grass depth, the section from crossing and around the back straight is much newer and only has about 40 millimetres grass depth.”

It is hoped a horse can gallop on it towards December with a trial after that all being well.

“There is no set date for racing return. This will be dependent on how quickly the newer part of the track catches up to the condition of the front straight,” Partington said.

It is understood, if possible, one meeting will be held before Christmas with at least two in February.