Minister for Racing Martin Pakula today announced a joint funding package of almost $228,000 for the world’s most prestigious greyhound race, the Melbourne Cup.
The Andrews Labor Government is providing almost $42,000 to support the meeting at Sandown Park tonight, courtesy of the Victorian Racing Industry Fund’s Raceday Attraction Program.
The Sandown Greyhound Racing Club is also contributing almost $116,000, with Greyhound Racing Victoria providing $70,000.
The greyhound racing industry in Victoria employs around 3000 people and contributes $315 million annually to the state's economy.
The Cup attracts some of the best greyhounds from around the country and it is the final event of the three-week Superdogs series that carries $1 million in prize money.
The race was first held in 1956 with total prize money of £500 – equal to about $15,500 in today’s money. The event now offers $600,000 in prize money, with the winner taking $420,000.
Last year the Cup meeting attracted 4500 patrons and the club is expecting a crowd of about 5000 this year.
Sandown is a family friendly venue which offers free entry to all its meetings. In keeping with this family theme, there will be face painting, games trailer, obstacle course, jumping castle and a fireworks display.
Patrons who book a dining package will be automatically entered into a reverse draw competition where the last person drawn will win an overseas holiday.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Racing Martin Pakula
“We’re proud to support the Melbourne Cup at Sandown because it supports jobs and delivers economic benefits to local communities.”
“We’re working to ensure the greyhound industry is able to flourish in an environment where integrity and animal welfare are paramount.”
Quotes attributable to Sandown Greyhound Racing Club CEO Greg Miller
“We are grateful for the generous support of the government for our premier night of racing and we’re expecting a record turnout to see the greyhounds in action.”
Reviewed 19 August 2020