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The Scone Cup carnival will reach new heights this year with $1.8 million on offer over two days and organisers predict it will just be the start of things to come.

The Listed $175,000 Scone Cup (1600m) will be run on May 13 with the $175,000 Listed Dark Jewel Classic (1400m) for fillies and mares the feature on May 14 which will be the major Saturday meeting for NSW.

Scone Race Club president Noel Leckie said the vision was that the two races would soon gain Group status.

“As well as the Dark Jewel we will have a 1400-metre race for two-year-old fillies and an 1100-metre race for three-year-old fillies on the Saturday, both worth $130,000,” Leckie said as he launched the carnival in Sydney on Monday.

“The carnival is the perfect lead-in to the big races in Brisbane.

“We are hoping the Cup and the Dark Jewel will gain Group status and owners and trainers will support the two days.

“The major studs in and around Scone are getting behind the races with sponsorship and we are excited to be offering $1.8 million over the two days.”

The Inglis Guineas (1600m) will this year be worth a minimum $250,000 plus any unclaimed Inglis bonuses.

The 2010 running of the race had a purse of $770,000 due to bonuses not won in the leadup.

Scone is the first country club to be given a major Saturday date in the absence of a Sydney metropolitan meeting while provincial Hawkesbury hosts its own Saturday two weeks earlier.

The Inglis Scone yearling sale will be held either side of the race meetings on May 12 and 15.

The most famous graduate from the sale is dual Group One winner Hot Danish, a $32,000 yearling who earned more than $2.3 million and was retired last month due to injury.

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