24.9°C 03:00 pm

Thousands enjoy St Pat's

Monday, 10th March, 2008

Hot weather couldn't keep the masses away from the city's premier social event on Saturday, as St Pat's races again drew thousands of locals and visitors to the race course. The 43rd annual race meeting proved as popular as ever despite the lingering effects of the Equine Influenza crisis.

St Pat's Race Club President Margaret Corradini said that they were very pleased with the turnout under the conditions. Club Vice President Andrew Schmidt said it would take a few days to have final crowd numbers, bookmakers turnovers and takings, but that the day went well.

"The club was delighted with the response of the general public in light of the lingering effects of Equine Influenza which cut our starters back by over 40 horses and the hot and dusty conditions braved by the large crowd," he said. "The racing was of the highest calibre."

Last year's winner Nozi took out the Outback Cup again and Menindee's Norms Boy won the Outback Sprint. In the fashions, Adelaide's Jessica Blair took out the honour of being named Colleen of the Course from a field of more than 50 contenders. Mr Schmidt said that hot conditions on the day put bars and staff under pressure but that extra security employed by the club worked very well and reported that the crowd was very well behaved.

A committee of less than 20 organise the event each year, which is made possible by about 100 volunteers. "Everybody works extremely hard," Ms Corradini said "The volunteers are worth their weight in gold." The club will hold a review of all race day activities on Thursday. Next year St Pat's will be held on March 28.

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