Moe Cup moves from a Thursday to a Friday

Gregor Mactaggart

THIS year’s Moe Cup will be run on a Friday.

The race that stops the Latrobe Valley has been moved from its traditional Thursday time slot by 24 hours to Friday, October 16, the day before the Caulfield Cup.

Racing Victoria last week released its race dates for the August to December 2020 period with the Moe Cup date among the key changes.

There will be no race meeting on Christmas Eve to allow industry stakeholders a two-day break from racing.

The rescheduling of the AFL Grand Final will see the Group 1 Underwood Stakes meeting moved 24 hours earlier to Saturday, September 26, with the Ansett Classic card at Mornington reverting to Sunday, September 27.

The Benalla and Coleraine Cups will be added to the schedule once the details surrounding the AFL Grand Final public holiday are released as the intention is to conduct both meetings on the holiday date.

Picnic and non-TAB meetings have been programmed for October, however Racing Victoria said a decision would be made closer to each event as to whether they proceed based on advice at the time around the ability for crowds to attend and the required COVID-19 biosecurity protocols.

Racing Victoria’s executive general manager of racing Greg Carpenter said the governing body did not want to make wholesale changes during the coronavirus pandemic.

“We are confident that our racing program will continue to attract the very best horses, trainers and jockeys to Victoria, where restrictions allow, which will help drive strong wagering and engagement results,” Mr Carpenter said.

“We are continuing to work on a return to crowds framework with the Clubs, based on the directives and guidelines provided by the Victorian Government. This advice will help us determine whether picnic and non-TAB meetings proceed as programmed because local community engagement is central to their success.

“On behalf of RV, I would like to thank our key stakeholders and Race Clubs for both their patience in these unique circumstances and their engagement in the consultation process.”