RENOWNED horse trainer and businesswoman Gai Waterhouse is set to grace the town for the Port Macquarie Cup on October 7.
Port Macquarie Race Club chief executive officer Michael Bowman believes the known names of racing go where the prize money is and where they believe they can win a race.
In 2014 the prize money was set at $15,000 for minor races but now the minimum has increased to $30,000.
“Where we had (previously) six $15,000 races, five of those are now $30,000, plus one that is $40,000, the sprint is worth $50,000 and the cup’s $100,000,” the ceo said.
Only one horse from Port Macquarie, ‘Don’t Nicme’ trained by Tas Morton is racing on October 7.
“Certainly we like to see all the visiting trainers turn up and contest the race but we always like to see a local win,” Mr Bowman said.
The Port Macquarie Cup is significant for the town as it creates a lot of publicity on a national scale as well as international.
“There are plenty of people sitting in pubs and clubs who know Port Macquarie because of the race track and the racing,” Mr Bowman said.
This year, the club expects a strong show of support as the Port Macquarie Cup has not been held since 2014, due to developments taking place to the race track.
“People are very keen, all the indications are that it is going to be a very big year for us and the weather forecast is good,” he said.
Over 100 casual employees are set to work on cup day.
Mr Bowman said the fashionista scene will continue to be very strong, with both males and females dressing to impress.
“I’ve noticed a change with even the young guys who 15 years ago wore jeans and they’re all suited up now,” he said.
The first race commences at 1.35pm at the Port Macquarie Race Club, situated on the Oxley Highway.
Entry to the races is $20 per person, with no unaccompanied minors admitted.
For more information visit www.portmacquarieraceclub.com.au