Punters Shy Away From Cushion Track In Queensland
It may be safer for horses and jockeys, but racing fans have still not shown much measure of acceptance of the $6 million Cushion Track that Queensland Racing installed at Corbould Racecourse Park.
Punters have voted with their pocketbooks when Friday night racing with a seven-race card brought in only $83,000 in wagers, compared to a meeting in December on the Course Proper in December that attracted $146,000.
The fact that the turf track carries the name Course Proper might speak volumes.
Many trainers categorically refuse to run their horses on the synthetic surface, leading to a high number of scratchings that had negative effects on turnover. Those who did choose to race had the opportunity to earn prize money against lessened fields rather than stand around idle.
The poor showing for the recent Sunshine Coast meeting does not bode well for Racing Queensland, as the organisation that reports being out of money and has taken the course to cut prize money to a massive degree.
The horses’ opinions do not figure into the equation, but it is hard to find an athlete in any sport that has a high opinion of synthetic surfaces under any circumstances, with many of them comparing artificial turf to asphalt.