Thoroughbred and harness racing venues in Northam, Narrogin and Geraldton are set to benefit from the latest round of grants from the State Government’s $25million Regional Racecourse Infrastructure Grants Program.
The Northam Harness Racing Club is the major beneficiary in this round of grants, with Racing and Gaming Minister Ljiljanna Ravlich announcing approval for a grant of $892,900 to upgrade racetrack facilities at the Avon Valley club.
The funds will be used to construct a new stalls complex, provide a new parade ring and install security and separation fencing.
“The club’s current race day stalls are white-ant infested and offer little protection from harsh weather conditions,” Ms Ravlich said.
“The new stalls complex will be a barn-style construction and will provide 110 undercover stalls.
“The complex will be fully lit for night racing and include a swab box, vet’s room, horse urinals and a wash-down bay.”
Importantly, the complex will incorporate design features aimed at addressing some of the environmental issues associated with the racetrack’s close proximity to the Avon River.
Work on the construction of the complex is expected to commence once local shire approval has been secured.
This latest grant brings the total of funds provided to the Northam Harness Racing Club under the Government’s Grants Program to almost $1.2million.
“The Carpenter Government is a strong supporter of harness racing in Western Australia and we are very pleased to be able to assist the Northam Harness Racing Club in this way,” the Minister said.
In other good news for country racing, the Narrogin Race Club and the Narrogin Harness Racing Club have received a grant of $20,000 to assist the two clubs to undertake their merger plan.
“The two clubs share a dual code racing facility in Narrogin and have reached agreement to merge their activities into one club to be known as Narrogin Racing Inc,” Ms Ravlich said.
“The clubs are to be congratulated on the merger, which will see thoroughbred and harness racing in Narrogin managed under a single administration.”
In a boost for harness racing in the Mid-West, the Geraldton Harness Racing Club has been awarded a grant of $9,862 to improve its racing surface.
This follows on from a major redevelopment of the Geraldton dual code racecourse completed under a $1.4million grant approved in 2005.
Under the guidance of Racing and Wagering Western Australia (RWWA), the Government’s Racecourse Infrastructure Grants program has now delivered in excess of $20million in grants to regional thoroughbred and harness racing venues since it commenced in August 2005.
“I am very pleased with the way RWWA is managing this important project,” the Minister said.
“Richard Burt and his team at RWWA have ensured that the Government’s funds are being well spent and I thank them for their good work.”
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