Work begins on Eagle Farm track upgrade

Thursday, 23 October 2014

The horses have moved out and the machines have moved in at Eagle Farm as the state’s premier race track and the spiritual home of racing in Queensland prepares for a multi-million dollar facelift. Racing Minister Steve Dickson and Treasurer Tim Nicholls today announced Evergreen Turf as the successful tenderer for the $10 million upgrade of the track.

“Eagle Farm is the showpiece when it comes to the Queensland racing industry and I’m pleased to announce Evergreen Turf will deliver the first major upgrade to the Eagle Farm track in 149 years of racing,” Mr Dickson said. “Work begins this week and will deliver up to 100 jobs over the duration of the entire project, which will deliver a world class racetrack and deliver on the Government’s promise to rebuild the racing industry and grow the economy.

Treasurer and Member for Clayfield Tim Nicholls said the upgrade of the course proper was another milestone in the State Government’s commitment to rejuvenate the State’s racing industry. “We’re restoring confidence in the racing sector, and shoring up an industry that employs 30,000 people, with this long overdue refurbishment,” Mr Nicholls said. “A state of the art surface will help drive interest from trainers and owners, which translates into wagering growth and improved patronage on race days, and provides a flow on effect to tourism and local businesses.”

Racing Queensland Chief Executive Darren Condon said the new racing surface would further improve the quality of the state’s thoroughbred racing product with new prize money allocations recently kicking in. “Evergreen was responsible for the turf racing surface at Pakenham in Victoria and upgrades at Hawkesbury in New South Wales, as well as a number of sports facilities around the country,” Mr Condon said. “The new racing surface uses the latest in drainage technology, which is designed to ensure racing continues under extreme weather events. The improved cambering of the track will also significantly enhance its racing performance.”

BRC Chairman Neville Bell said the track upgrade would deliver a first class racing and training facility for the racing industry of Queensland. “The Brisbane Racing Club is privileged to be the custodian of the Eagle Farm course proper, a location where Queensland racehorse owners aspire to win a race and Queensland punters want to bet on,” Mr Bell said. “The upgrade of the course proper is the first phase of a major redevelopment of the track and infield areas of Eagle Farm, with ensuing stages to include flood mitigation works, a 1,000 vehicle car park, tunnels and 400 new state-of-the-art horse stables.” Further information will be provided on these sections of the project in the near future, however today’s announcement marks an important milestone in the execution of our Master Plan, which will see significant investment in the Eagle Farm and Doomben racecourse precincts,” he said.

The project to upgrade the Eagle Farm course proper will include:

91,000m2 of grass to be stripped
91,000m2 of kikuyu turf to be laid in its place
65,000m2 of course proper
25,000m3 of sand to be imported
19,000 l/m of drainage pipes
A state of the art irrigation system