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Colac Racetrack
Picnic Bookies Always a Better Bet !

 
 
 

 

148 km south west from Melbourne, access via the Princess Hwy. Access the Colac Travel Map and to "Get Directions" click the icon on the map.

Long and steady climb from back straight to 800m mark before a downhill run around the turn and into the straight. Home run of 350m is almost flat. Track is loam soil, grassed with Victorian and New Zealand rye.

Distance to 1st turn
1000m - about 250m
1100m - about 350m
1200m - about 450m
1600m - about 200m
2000m - about 250m


History of Colac Turf Club

Colac Turf Club was formed in 1862 and is the home of a professional country racetrack used by the Colac St Pats for its once a year picnic meeting. The Turf Club has a colourful history with early participants willing to win at all costs. Leaving behind documentation of a ring-in, jockeys entering races under assumed names, and a horse winning a hurdle race in spite of racing around four of the fences ! This last incident seems like a case of lateral thinking on the part of the Stewards in the 1889 steeplechase. They reasoned that of the only two horses to finish the race the second horse had failed to clear two of the jumps (at least it tried) and, had the two horses successfully jumped all the fences the first horse called 'Native' would have won !
The cavalier attitude of those days is long gone. The club has survived over the decades and is thriving well in spite of a period of waning support in the 1970s. But the members and townsfolk rallied round when it was learned that the racecourse was to be closed and all races run at nearby Geelong to ease the fincancial burden. The interest has continued as was proved in 1983 when the racing's governing body tried to restrict the club to racing only on Saturdays. Once more both members and residents banded together to defeat the motion and were awarded two Friday race days on their programs.
The attractive club has kept up with the times and the old grandstand has been upgraded to include catering facilities. The betting ring is undercover and grassed viewing areas with a backdrop of trees create a pretty picture. The club bills itself as the 'Gateway to Western District Racing' and the hundred year old Colac Gold Cup event, run in February attracts good fields and crowds.

             
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