Day At The Track

Cranbourne & Cobram track upgrades

10:05 AM 08 Jul 2008 NZST
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The Harness Racing Victoria (HRV) Board has approved the allocation of funding for major upgrades to the Cranbourne and Cobram harness racing tracks during the 2008-09 financial year.

HRV's Development Fund will provide the majority of funding for a $530,000 facelift at Cranbourne and a $500,000 upgrade at Cobram.

Each track will have the camber on their turns increased significantly to 12.5 percent, the gradient in their straights increased to four percent and innovative spiral turns added to reduce stresses on the horse and provide a smoother transition into the bends.

At present, the 1008-metre Cobram track only boasts a four percent camber on the turns, while Cranbourne's 950-metre circuit, which is located inside the thoroughbred track, fluctuates between seven and eight percent camber around its bends.

HRV Chief Executive, John Anderson, said the improvements would ensure both tracks satisfy HRV's preferred-standard criteria and further cement Victoria's position as the national leader in the quantity and quality of elite tracks it provides.

"Of our 19 TAB race tracks, this will bring to 14 the number of preferred-standard tracks now upgraded in Victoria," Anderson said.

"Cranbourne is the premier harness racing venue in the state's south east, while Cobram is a key border venue in Victoria's north east and thus these strategic upgrades will ensure both tracks remain pivotal to the sport's future success.

"Harness Racing Victoria is committed to providing safe, fair and competitive racetracks for not only our participants to compete on, but for punters to wager on nationally.

"These enhancements will do just that at Cranbourne and Cobram, ensuring that we maximise the value and appeal of both venues with modern design technology so that each remains at a standard equal to the many elite tracks across the state."

Work is scheduled to commence at Cobram later this month, with racing to resume in late October ahead of the club's popular annual Melbourne Cup Day feature.

The Cranbourne works will commence in the week after this year’s Cup meeting -- to be run on Saturday, November 29 -- with racing to return in early March ahead of the annual tri-codes meeting at the Cranbourne Racing Complex.

Shaun Kelly, HRV Communications Manager

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