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Despite some mixed responses to the concept leading into the first Rapid Racing meeting at Flemington, Victoria Racing Club official Leigh Jordon says he is rapt with the field sizes the new twilight fixture has attracted.

Sunday’s meeting will feature seven races between 4pm and 7pm with 30 minute gaps between races, all run on Flemington’s straight course.

The meeting also incorporates a jockeys’ challenge with a team of metropolitan riders against a team representing the country with a running point score based on the top four placegetters in each race.

There will also be an individual point score for both jockeys and trainers.

Four of the seven races attracted full fields of 12 plus emergencies while two had 11 acceptors on Thursday.

The opening race for two-year-olds has nine acceptors with Jordon delighted with the numbers taking into account some recent field sizes.

“Really in this current environment where field sizes are pretty low, I’m rapt with the acceptances,” Jordon said.

There has been mixed response from varying participants leading into the meeting in which jockeys on the metropolitan team will ride horses with odd-numbered saddlecloths.

Jordon said the meeting was about trying something different in a shorter, sharper format.

“It may not suit some people but from our perspective we were looking at what we can supply that was for three hours, that’s a tight entertainment product that we can offer our on-course fans and off-course fans,” Jordon said.

“…The idea is, we’re up against basketball, T20 cricket, all these other entertainment and leisure options. Racing has got to move and change and be able to compete so we can offer something different and something the fan might enjoy.

“It’s probably about engagement. We’ll monitor what people are saying and how they react to it. How many we get there on the day. That sort of thing.”

 
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