The Brisbane Racing Club has bucked the national trend and stayed on budget with its Melbourne Cup week meetings.
Crowds and betting turnover were reportedly down at many racetracks across Australia.
BRC chairman Neville Bell was happy with the Melbourne Cup week crowds at the club’s tracks but believes the days of huge numbers are past.
Bell said the crowds for Eagle Farm for Derby and Melbourne Cup days were on budget with the final day at Doomben on Saturday also on target.
“We budgeted for 8000 people on Cup day and we got just on it. All of our corporate functions were sold out but we didn’t get any more walk-ups than expected,” Bell said.
“The days of the BRC attracting crowds of 15,000 to Cup day are long gone. It doesn’t mean less people are interested, it is just that there are so many more options off course these days.”
“Crowds were down Australia-wide so it was pleasing to hold our ground. Our crowds for most of the year have been slightly up and the idea is to increase on that.”
Bell said the BRC’s biggest days were now the Exhibition Wednesday and Stradbroke Handicap days.
“But like clubs Australia wide we have to keep working to attract people to our venue,” he said.