Colac Christmas Races cancelled

OFFICIALS have cancelled Colac’s Christmas race meeting tomorrow due to hot weather.

The cancellation is another blow to racing in Colac, which has not had a race meeting for two-and-a-half years due to track upgrades.

Colac’s first race meeting will now be the Colac Gold Cup on February 14.

The Bureau of Meteorology predicts the temperature will reach 39 degrees in Colac tomorrow, and the CFA advises the day will have an “extreme” fire danger rating, as well as a total fire ban.

Officials had previously opted to start the race day early, until Racing Victoria decided to cancel race meets at Flemington, Wangaratta, Colac and Yea.

Turf club staff are contacting people with marquee bookings to advise them of the cancellation.

RV chief Bernard Saundry said the decision to cancel thoroughbred racing across Victoria tomorrow was in the best interests of all participants, staff and patrons.

“The weather across Victoria tomorrow will be extreme and we have taken a view, after examining the latest forecast, that it is in the best interests of all that we not conduct any race meetings,” Mr Saundry said.

“We have a responsibility to protect the health and safety of all participants, both human and equine, along with staff and patrons, in extreme weather conditions such as that forecast tomorrow,” he said.

“It’s an unfortunate situation for clubs and patrons who were preparing to gather and celebrate Christmas at racetracks across Victoria, but we are not prepared to take any risks in these extreme conditions.”

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