Geelong is set to share in a major $200,000 broadcasting and OH&S overhaul across a swathe of Victorian race clubs thanks to an initiative announced by Minister for Racing Denis Napthine today.
Dr Napthine said the joint investment from the Victorian Coalition Government and the racing industry would improve safety, integrity and broadcast facilities at 21 racing clubs across Victoria, with Geelong to receive more than $21,000 for works including the construction of a permanent broadcast facility and upgrades to the steward's room.
"Geelong is home to one of country Victoria's premier racing venues and with the winners of the previous two Geelong Cups going on to also win the Melbourne Cup, Geelong is quickly gaining a reputation among the world's most renowned trainers," Dr Napthine said.
"However, at the moment broadcasts are conducted from a temporary marquee. This funding will see the construction of a permanent broadcasting facility to better showcase the top-quality racing events Geelong has to offer."
Member for South Barwon Andrew Katos said the Geelong Cup was an important part of the Spring Racing Carnival and generated $7 million for the local economy.
"This will make a great difference on big days at Geelong, including the Geelong Cup, and will ensure the best possible broadcasts are beamed right around Australia and overseas," Mr Katos said.
Geelong Racing Club Chief Executive Paul Carroll said the new broadcast facilities would allow ThoroughVision (TVN) to better promote racing in country Victoria.
"TVN is an important stakeholder in the industry and this new broadcast booth will not only help promote the Geelong Racing Club but also the industry in general," Mr Carroll said.
Dr Napthine said Geelong would also be among a number of Victorian racing clubs that would receive upgrades to the steward's room, including installation of permanent viewing monitors and infrastructure cabling, as part of a program to improve OH&S and racing integrity.
"This funding is an example of the Coalition Government's commitment to racing in Geelong. It follows investments in developing a master plan for the racecourse precinct, revamping the Dual Choice Room and providing free entertainment for the 'Kids Summer of Country Racing' campaign," Dr Napthine said.