Inter Dominion future assured
The immediate future of the Australian and New Zealand harness racing industry's flagship event, the Inter Dominion Pacing Championship, has been secured with the announcement today of hosting rights for the iconic event for most of the next decade, and possibly beyond.
With the final series in the current three year tender set to commence this week in Perth, the Inter Dominion Event Committee (IDEC) announced today that the event would next year commence a long term rotation taking in the eastern states of Australia and both islands of New Zealand.
IDEC has endorsed a nine year, 3-rotation plan proposed by co-hosts Harness Racing Victoria (HRV), Harness Racing New Zealand (HRNZ) Club Menangle (NSWHRC) and Harness Racing NSW (HRNSW).
The initial 3-year rotation will begin with Victoria hosting the Grand Final on 15 December 2018 followed by New Zealand, expected to be in Auckland, on 13 December 2019, and then New South Wales on 4 December 2020. There will then be two repeats of the rotation, with Christchurch replacing Auckland as the New Zealand venue in the second rotation.
In an agreement between the co-hosts and IDEC, the rotations proposal will be evaluated in terms of prizemoney, format and the addition of other eligible members into future rotations following the second year of each rotation phase.
In making the announcement, IDEC Chairman, Mr Ken Spicer, acknowledged that the winning submission was a non-conforming bid, but praised the architects of the proposal for their foresight.
“The co-hosts have developed a unique proposal which delivers certainty for this iconic event for at least the next nine years, and beyond if other eligible bodies join the cycle in the second and third rotation phases,” Mr Spicer said.
“The confidence that long term certainty of location, format and prizemoney levels provides the industry cannot be overstated, and for that the co-hosts should be applauded”.
Speaking on behalf of the co-hosts, HRNSW chief executive Mr John Dumesny said all parties were keen to ensure the Inter Dominion maintained its status as the flagship event for harness racing in Australasia.
“The Inter Dominion has been part of the very fabric of harness racing in Australia and New Zealand for more than 80 years. The Carnival’s history is littered with the feats of many of the greatest pacers to have graced our tracks,” Mr Dumesny said.
“It is important this tradition continues and I am grateful to the co-hosts for working collaboratively to frame the proposal.
“Further, on behalf of the co-hosts, I graciously thank the IDEC members for accepting the proposal which retains the traditional aspects of the Inter Dominion. Aspects which I expect will be appreciated by the industry and fans alike as it stands this great race apart from all other Grand Circuit races.
“Details of the individual Inter Dominion Carnivals going forward will be advised by the co-hosts in due course, but now is the time for all harness racing enthusiast to enjoy the fabulous Perth Inter Dominion Carnival.” Dumesny concluded.
Mr Spicer also praised the efforts and success of the last two years when the Inter Dominion has been staged in Perth and said he felt the 2017 series would also be outstanding.
“Both Racing and Wagering Western Australia (RWWA) and Gloucester Park Harness Racing (GPHR) have provided an excellent spectacle these past two years and I wish them the very best for another successful Carnival which kicks off with the first round of heats this Friday night”.
For further information please contact IDEC Secretary, Mr Andrew Kelly on +61 488 358285.