‘We need to race’ – Barraba set to host crowdless non-TAB meet

Barraba Jockey Club won’t be hosting a crowd on Saturday when they run their annual six-race Barraba Cup program. Photo: Dockerty Photography.

Despite being a community meeting and standing nothing to gain financially from racing on Saturday, Barraba Jockey Club’s committee will roll up their sleeves and host a six-race non-TAB meeting. 

Headlined by the $16,000 Barraba Cup over 1400m, there has been 60 nominations for the meeting and Barraba Jockey Club President, Leon Cummins, was just happy his club was able to race and help local participants. 

“We are virtually racing to look after owners, jockeys and trainers,” Cummins said. 

“There have been a lot of meetings here that have been washed out and now more meetings aren’t going ahead because of Covid, so we need to race.” 

Barraba might not attract the crème de la crème of country horses, and Cummins was okay with that, highlighting the need for community meetings now more than ever.

“It’s important to race, especially for those lower rated horses,” Cummins said.

“They can’t all get a run at those stronger meetings and hopefully this meeting supports those horses and gives them a chance to race and supports those local owners and trainers with a few extra dollars.”

Cummins said it wasn’t ideal not having a crowd on Saturday but following the drought and than back-to-back seasons impacted by Covid-19, the optimistic president was hopeful that 2022 and beyond would prove to bring better times to once-a-year country race clubs such as Barraba.

“We will just keep roiling on and look towards next year,” Cummins said. 

“We have a great committee, and they will all be working on the day. There will be barrier attendants, clerk of the courses and everyone else, and it is all voluntary.”

Nominations for the Barraba meeting can be viewed by clicking here and punters and racing fans will be able to have a bet on the day with Southern Cross Bet fielding on the meeting.