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Thread: Melb Showgrounds

  1. #21
    Senior Member Horse Of The Year Dot will become famous soon enough
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    Could fit one next door......

    It’s crown land, can we stake a claim.....

  2. #22
    Super Moderator Stallion Messenger will become famous soon enough Messenger's Avatar
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    I don't like tracks inside a gallops track but the stands would be attractive
    per un PUGNO di DOLLARI

  3. #23
    Senior Member Horse Of The Year Dot will become famous soon enough
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    No not inside the gallops track. Was looking at the land south of the railway line adjacent the Showground. Have the state government add that to a redeveloped enlarged Showgrounds precinct and a track fits.

  4. #24
    Super Moderator Stallion Messenger will become famous soon enough Messenger's Avatar
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    Ray Chaplin emailed me with the following:

    This provides probably Harness Racing’s last opportunity to establish its own City entertainment venue
    I wonder what Dale Monteith and his Board are doing about it
    There are those that makes things happen, those that watch things happen and those that wonder what happened
    It would be great if harness racing leadership could fit into the first and not the last category
    per un PUGNO di DOLLARI

  5. #25
    Super Moderator Stallion Messenger will become famous soon enough Messenger's Avatar
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    “The heartbeat (of returning the Showgrounds) is not gone,” he said.

    “The footprint of the Heritage buildings is the issue. As it stands, there is only room for about a 740m track and with today’s horses and the speed they go, the industry would really need something around the 900m mark to be viable.

    HRV Chairman Dale Monteith added: “That footprint is an issue the Racing Minister (Martin Pakula) is keen to pursue to a logical conclusion.

    “We would like to be at the Showgrounds … Melton is the workhorse of the industry and will always have an important role, but do we need something closer to town?”


    https://harnesslink.com/australia/ho...e-showgrounds/
    per un PUGNO di DOLLARI

  6. #26
    Senior Member Stallion Showgrounds is just really nice Showgrounds is just really nice
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    So, it only took two decades to work out Melton is 35 kms West of Melbourne. Its predecessors, Moonee Valley is 7km and the Showgrounds about the same. In its heyday Showgrounds trots were well served by public transport, the 57 tram, scheduled bus services and special trains from Flinders Street. A good thing because because car parking was somewhat of a raffle and many patrons were fond of the turps. Melton? I'd love to see a survey of where it's crowds, if crowds there are, are drawn from. Exclude those connected to horses, I am talking those who make a mindful decision to spend a few hours at the Melton trots. I don't think it would take long to do.

    It is interesting that HRV finally realises its Melton track, accessible primarily by car or Shank's pony. Or by rail to the new Cobblebank station followed by a vigorous half hour walk. The program for this year's Inter-Dominion includes rounds of heats at Bathurst and Newcastle in recognition, perhaps, if fans won't travel to Menangle for the races you must take the racing to the fans. The penny seems to have dropped with HRV as well. The only metropolitan track that seems to consistently pull crowds is Gloucester Park and you can walk straight down Hay St from the CBD to get there. In Qld it appears that a new track, co-located with the Greyhounds, is being investigated somewhere between Brisbane and Whoop-Whoop.

    I am presently sorting through half a century of old race books and Trotting magazines in my stables. A task akin to de-coding th Dead Sea scrolls and discovering King Tut's tomb, for sure. Amongst the artefacts I will soon discover a Trotting Register from 1972 which, on the front cover, featured an architectural rendering of a redeveloped Melbourne Showgrounds, complete with a state of the art half mile track. The track was completely encircled by grandstands, Colosseum style, to cater for the 20,000 or so punters that would turn up every Saturday night!

    When the Showgrounds finally was redeveloped the Trotting track, along with the Hunter, Mitchell, Cliff, Gibsonia and Wilson grandstands were demolished. Only the heritage listed Public Stand, which dominated the back straight and was highlighted beautifully on black and white TV by the string of 150 watt light globes under the front of the roof. It, along with other heritage pavilions, remain a stumbling block to any future redevelopment. As part of the last redevelopment the RASV sold off 8 acres from the site, which won't help the proposal.

    It is no surprise HRV came out with its interesting comments about the Showgrounds. It coincides with the RASV's announcement that the Royal Melbourne Show has been cancelled for the second straight year due to COVID-19 uncertainties. The Showgrounds website is all about functions and events, none of which are happening. I assume the Society's major source of income has been from the Victorian Government using it as a COVID testing station.

    I have absolutely no doubt the Royal Agricultural Society of Victoria would welcome the trots back to its Showgrounds. After all, night trotting was primarily the only activity that kept it viable for over three decades and it was as fond of the trots' money as Dracula was partial to drink of blood. As far as I am concerned Orandra Prince will remain the last horse to wIn a TAB race at the Showgrounds.

    Times have changed and all the industry participants have moved on, many of them to regional areas because they can no longer afford to train horses on valuable land on Melbourne's fringe. And the traffic!

    It's a lovely little throw away line from Dale Montieth but it but it will never, ever happen. I firmly believe Melton was was a mistake bothe in concept and execution. I am not alone with that view. However, the land HRV now owns at Melton is an extremely valuable asset. It begs the question, though, of how good would we be looking now had Graeme Cochran not been white-anted and Keysborough been developed? Maybe Melton will come good and I will be forced to eat my words.

  7. #27
    Super Moderator Stallion Messenger will become famous soon enough Messenger's Avatar
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    Trevor you would be happy to know that Ray Chaplin of EquineExcellence/Brand Focus fame presented the discrepancies between the Sydney Showgrounds (leased by the RASNSW) and the Melbourne Showgrounds to the Vic government
    Showing that partnering with GWS Giants and Sydney Thunder etc RASNSW has been able to maximize the use of the facilities and produce revenue, something that the RASV/Melbourne Showgrounds needs to do. Suggestion - restore harness racing
    You would also be happy to know that he included suggestions for the valuable Melton asset

    It is a long shot but I hope the Showgrounds are the ones that have you eat your words (no disrespect intended)
    per un PUGNO di DOLLARI

  8. #28
    Senior Member Stallion Showgrounds is just really nice Showgrounds is just really nice
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    I won't be going on a diet in anticipation of eating my words, Kev. Not unless we accept 700 metre tracks as the way forward or are happy to bowl over heritage listed buildings.

    Back in the late 70s, early 80s may be there was a proposal for the Melbourne Showgrounds to become Essendon's home ground. While that never grew wings it did become home ground for the Western Jets under 18 team.

  9. #29
    aussiebreno
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    The issue runs a lot deeper than location. Moonee Valley was a ghost town too by mid 00s.

  10. #30
    Super Moderator Stallion Messenger will become famous soon enough Messenger's Avatar
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    True Breno but location is a pretty big issue
    Moonee Valley was far from an ideal venue, inside a racetrack tells you straight away that one of our drawcards - proximity to the action, was not possible
    Say we start creating a bit of publicity for ourselves, pique people's interest then they find out the track is WHERE!
    This is why we need some serious reform:

    In year ended 2019/20 the Victorian market shares were Thoroughbreds 61.05%; Greyhounds 17.52%; Sports Betting 13.05% and Harness Racing a miserable 8.37%
    per un PUGNO di DOLLARI

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