FEMALE athletes will reap the benefits of a significant prizemoney increase at next month’s Ballarat Gift Carnival.
Ballarat Athletic Club has doubled the prizemoney for the Ballarat Women’s Gift to $5000.
The boost for the 120-metre event is in response to increased women’s registrations with the Victorian Athletic League.
The club is hoping the injection of prizemoney will lift the number of entries to at least 60 for heats at the Eastern Oval on Saturday, February 8 ahead of the semi-finals and final on Sunday, February 9.
Club president Shane Woodrow said the growth in women’s participation on the VAL circuit had been most encouraging.
“We reviewed the prizemoney offered for the Mars Ballarat Women’s Gift and believe the increase is a positive response in women’s athletics.”
The City of Ballarat is also backing the event.
Woodrow said the increased prizemoney put made the women’s gift one of the richest on the VAL circuit.
Stonnington is the richest with $15,000, the same as its open gift, while Stawell’s women’s 120m handicap carries $6000 in prizemoney.
“It is important for Ballarat to keep the women’s gift as one of the sought-after events on its program,” Woodrow said.
“We trust this will see some of Australia’s elite female athletes competing.”
The Ballarat Women’s Gift prizemoney pool has fluctuated over the past decade, with the 2010 edition of the race also worth $5000.