The Andrews Labor Government has announced a $4 million investment towards Ballarat’s Dowling Forest Racecourse’s new synthetic race track on Saturday morning.
Racing Minister Martin Pakula was in Ballarat to announce the investment from the Victorian Racing Industry Fund, which is part of a $10 million joint funding package with Racing Victoria.
“This major investment in a new synthetic track will ensure Ballarat remains one of Victoria’s leading racing and training centres,” Mr Pakula said.
“The government is getting on and delivering a new all-weather synthetic track to reduce stress on the turf track, especially during winter months, and provide even greater certainty for the racing industry.”
The new all-weather track will reduce stress on the turf track with works expected to start in the coming weeks and is due for completion in May 2019.
There will also be $20,000 from the club and Racing Victoria invested to upgrade the jockey’s room at the Ballarat Turf Club, which will include new furniture, scales and flooring.
Labor is also investing $29,000 towards the Ballarat Cup, which will feature a day of entertainment in late November, including a range of live acts and DJs and a new precinct known as the Yard, which will feature food trucks and drinks from the Sam Miranda Spritz Bar.
The club is contributing more than $40,000 to the race day, while Country Racing Victoria is providing more than $16,000.
The Central Highlands’ racing industry generates more than $96 million for the Victorian economy annually and helps sustain more than 950 full-time equivalent jobs in the region.