A crowd of hundreds enjoyed some fun in the winter sun at Cessnock’s Jungle Juice Cup race day on Tuesday.
Newcastle Jockey Club chief executive Matt Benson said it was an exciting day of racing at Cessnock.
“We’ve dodged a bullet with the weather, and we’ve got a great day of racing and allied activities to entertain everyone, including the kids,” he said.
Mr Benson said the Cessnock racecourse had recently been renovated, and its new advisory committee will hold its first meeting on July 19.
“It will give a local voice in promotion, connection and engagement with the community,” he said.
“We’ve got some exciting plans for Cessnock, it’s a great facility.”
First held in 1981, the Jungle Juice Cup is Cessnock’s biggest race meeting of the year and draws punters from across the Hunter and beyond.
Nowra couple Nathan Button and Brooke Strahan travelled to Cessnock just for the day, and entered Fashions on the Field competition.
Mr Button impressed the judges in his op-shop outfit to take out the men’s section, while Ms Strahan was runner-up in the women’s section.
“We love getting dressed up for the races,” Ms Strahan said.
“It’s a bit of extra fun,” Mr Button added.
Isaac Mordue, who lives about 500 metres from the racecourse, was runner-up in the men’s section, having entered it for the first time.
“My friend entered last year, so I thought I would have a crack,” he said.
The weather didn’t look promising at the start of the day, but the sun was shining by lunchtime, and a couple of afternoon showers brought a spectacular double rainbow over the course.
The main race was won by Ultima Chance, trained by Goulburn’s Scott Collings with Dubbo jockey Greg Ryan on board.
Race favourite Three Sheets, ridden by legendary Cessnock jockey Robert Thompson and trained by Jeremy Sylvester, finished second by two-and-a-quarter lengths.
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