Bathurst Racecourse is a thoroughbred horse racing facility in Kelso, New South Wales, Australia. The racecourse operates under the management and supervision of the Bathurst Thoroughbred Racing Club.
The club rebranded in 2012 and is Australia’s premier provider and organiser of thoroughbred horse racing. The racecourse, also known as Tyers Park, is the centre for thoroughbred racing for the Central District Region and is a major supplier of races for the provincially trained and second-tier metropolitan gallopers. The racecourse is the ideal training facility for horses worthy of provincial or metropolitan participation due to its proximity to Sydney and its location.
Here is a brief insight into the history, physical attributes, and features of the Bathurst Racecourse.
Bathurst Racecourse History
The region of Bathurst has a long-standing history of horse racing and ownership. The area is known to have a strong economy, while a diverse agribusiness landscape comprising an abundant supply of grain, fruits, and cattle further strengthens the region’s capability to provide strength to horse breeding and racing.
Racing in the Bathurst region can be traced back to 1886, when The Barb, the winner of the Melbourne Cup, was trained and housed on Stephens Lane in Bathurst, only 1.5kms away from the present venue of Tyers Park. The stables where The Barb resided are still operative today as a group of market gardeners privately restored them to make them adequate for use.
Construction for Bathurst racecourse on its present site began in 1946. However, the inaugural race meeting at Bathurst Thoroughbred Racing Tyers Park venue was held in 1959. Since then, the facility has become the prime venue for horse training and racing and has a long and distinguished history of racing in the New South Wales Racing Industry.
Some of the most renowned horses trained at the Bathurst racecourse have won the Summer Cup, Cox Plate, and Villiers Stakes. One such champion was Rising Prince, who won the Summer Cup. Other champion runners trained at the Bathurst racecourse include Top of the Nap, winner of the Gosford Guineas, and Gold Circle, the winner of the Epsom Handicap.
Australia’s famous champion runner Tulloch was owned by a Bathurst-based family. The runner was housed at his owner’s Te Koona Stud, where he sired Dahma Star, the winner of the Christmas Cup in 1967, and Valide, the winner of SA Oaks in 1968.
Moreover, Bathurst Racecourse has also been home to Hugh Bowman, a champion rider who is also on the Tyers Park honour roll. The Bathurst Racecourse was upgraded and converted into a key regional training and racing centre in 1990-91.
A new grandstand was built at the racecourse in the 1990s. In 2011, Bathurst Thoroughbred Racing was formed after the merger between the Orange Jockey Club and Bathurst Turf Club failed. Before that, Bathurst Turf Club had conducted races at Tyers Park for over 50 years.
Bathurst Racecourse Facilities
Bathurst Racecourse is located on the northeastern end of Bathurst on Eleven Mile Drive. The racetrack is symmetrical, with a good run home. The track has a circumference of 1600 metres, while the home straight has a length of 390 metres. The track takes a downward course and features 1000 metres back straight from the 1400 metres starting chute leading to the home turn before gallopers face a straight uphill.
Racing takes place in a clockwise direction at Bathurst. The track particulars at the Bathurst Racecourse make it a key racing venue for lower-grade Hawkesbury runners. The representation from Warwick and Rosehill Farm trainers is increasing consistently in races conducted throughout the year.
In April 2021, a major government-funded renovation project was initiated at Tyers Park to revive thoroughbred racing in the NSW region. As a part of the project, four modern horse walkers were installed at the facility. Moreover, four stable blocks having 20 boxes each and a treadmill were added, while the training track was widened by three metres. As a result, the accommodation capacity for the racecourse was increased from 30 horses to around 80 horses at a time.
The training facilities at Bathurst comprise an inside grass training track, tracks and cinders, and a jogging track. The racecourse features shade trees and beautiful grass, a canteen, an enclosed dining bar, a viewing area, and a bar, making it a great place to visit on family days. The racecourse venue also features conference and convention facilities where different kinds of private and corporate events are held.
Bathurst Racecourse Fixture Calendar
As mentioned earlier, Tyers Park Bathurst Thoroughbred Racecourse is the key racing venue for the central district regions. It is a key venue for race meetings for the provincial and second-tier metropolitan trained runners. The racecourse features 12 race meetings annually, including the Bathurst Cup, held in mid-February, Soldiers Saddle run on Anzac Day. These races bring commended gallopers, owners, and trainers to Bathurst every year.