Eagle Farm Passes First Serious Test

The new Eagle Farm racing surface has passed its first major test with horses galloping on the course proper.

Eagle Farm, the state’s major track, has been out of operation for most of the past four years because of problems during its redevelopment.

A new base and grass were laid earlier this year and then given five months to settle.

Racing Queensland and the Brisbane Racing Club decided to allow 14 horses to gallop on the track on Tuesday morning with the pegs out about 15 metres.

The Tony Gollan-trained Coldstone and Galtero were the first to work on the track.

When they completed their gallops the two got a round of applause and cheers from the crowd gathered to watch.

At least two trials will now be held at Eagle Farm next Tuesday.

If the track comes through that test a full race meeting will be conducted on December 22 with another likely in late January.

The track will be used in the winter carnival but there will not be the usual three Group One meetings in a row.

Racing Queensland chief executive Brendan Parnell said while the track had done well on Tuesday there still needed to be caution before the green light was given for a race meeting.

“We want to test the full track with trials next week. (Tuesday)’s gallops were in the centre of the track which stood up well,” Parnell said.

Racing Minister Stirling Hinchliffe was at the gallops and praised the way the track had come up.

“The cheers when the first horses completed their gallops showed just how much people want to get back to racing here,” he said.

– AAP

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