Flame sparks a golden summer

By ALEX NOLAN

An exciting new race that dangles a $1.145 million carrot in front of the winner and significant prizemoney increases has laid the platform for what promises to be a memorable 2021/22 TAB Golden Greys Summer Carnival at Albion Park.

The fire will be sparked on December 2 with the running of the inaugural Listed Queensland Flame, which will decide who fills Racing Queensland’s slot in the TAB Phoenix at The Meadows on December 18.

A Queensland representative in the rich event not only provides them with an opportunity to share in the massive prizemoney on offer but also acts as a great advertisement for the Golden Greys.

The 2021/22 Carnival benefits from the following feature prizemoney increases:

  • Group 1 Gold Bullion was $235,000 (now $300,000)
  • Group 2 Golden Sands was $60,000 (now $113,000)

Racing Queensland chairman Steve Wilson AM said the feature increases, made possible by an overall $4.6 million uplift in prizemoney, come on the back of another growth year for the code.

“The increases will continue to position Queensland greyhound racing as a significant player in national group and feature racing theatre whilst also ensuring the vast majority of the injection is dedicated to general prize money,” he said.

Group racing gets under way at Albion Park on December 16 with the rescheduled Group 2 Sennachie @ Stud Queensland Derby and Group 2 Orson Allen @ Stud Bogie Leigh Futurity Finals, which went back a week to accommodate the new Flame.

The carnival rolls on through the holiday period with the Christmas Stocking and Middle-Distance Challenge (December 23) and the New Year’s Trophy (December 30).

Excitement builds again with the Group 2 Golden Sands (600m) accompanying the ‘Golden Oldies’ Masters 5th Grade feature on January 6.

The meeting on January 20 is highlighted by the Group 3 Golden Ticket, which offers the overall winner a free pass into the Group 1 Gold Bullion and, also features the Australia Day Trophy and Clem Jones Cup.

It all comes to a thrilling conclusion on February 3 with the running of the Group 1 Gold Bullion and Group 3 TAB Gold Cup.

Racing Queensland CEO Brendan Parnell said the carnival kick-starter, the Queensland Flame, would provide Queensland greyhounds a chance to compete under the national spotlight.

“The race will set the stage as the perfect opening event for the highly anticipated TAB Golden Greys Summer Racing Carnival,” he said.

“Initiatives such as the Golden Ticket and Gold Bullion continue to go from strength-to-strength with strong local and inter-state support.”

And, as per usual, the Brisbane Greyhound Racing Club has numerous exciting activities and entertainment planned for patrons planning to attend.

Some of the acts set to entertain the crowds at this year’s carnival include the Daisy Dukes, Scott Whatman, a Fleetwood Mac tribute and Midnight Oil Tribute.

The Christmas race night on December 23 will provide entertainment for the whole family, including children’s entertainment and a visit from the big man in the red suit.

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