By Sarah Templeton, Westlawn Wealth Management 7 July 2014
After a chilly start, Grafton turned on a glorious sunny winter’s day for the 2014 Westlawn Black & Gold Race Day.
With gates opening at 10.30am it wasn’t long before eager racegoers started streaming into the Grafton Racecourse. Among the early starters were the Yamba Backpackers – regulars at Westlawn Race Day – who enthusiastically departed the free bus just after gates opened and were spotted heading in the general direction of the Ramornie Bar.
Fun for the whole family
Westlawn Race Day isn’t just about having a bet on the horses and a beer at the bar.
Billed as a family day, there are always plenty of fun activities to keep the kids happy courtesy of the Byron Bay KidzKlub. With face painting proving popular again this year, there was a constant line up of youngsters patiently awaiting their turn with KidzKlub’s resident artist.
And just after 1pm, Prime Possum made a surprise visit to catch up with buddy Westlawn Wally and to mingle with his young fans.
Andrew Murphy of Ulmarra brought along his four children and was one of the many parents to enjoy the family-friendly atmosphere.
“It’s a wonderful day – the kids have all had a ball. Sometimes you can’t afford to do stuff like this so it’s great Westlawn has put this on to support the community,” he told the Daily Examiner.
Fashions on the Field
Another tradition of Westlawn Race Day is the Black & Gold fashions and again this year fashionable racegoers got into the spirit of the day’s Black & Gold theme.
With such a terrific turnout for the Fashions on the Field, it was a difficult decision for the Westlawn panel of judges to choose a winner.
Suzanne Campbell’s outfit earned her first prize while Amie Want was close behind in second place. Third prize went to Lucz Everson while the Spirit of Westlawn prize went to Katie Smith.
All winners and their guests enjoyed the corporate facilities for the running of the John Carlton Cup.
…and horses of course
Of course, among the Fashions on the Field, live entertainment and KidzKlub there was some horse racing too.
The Westlawn Grafton Prelude, run over 2,210 metres was taken out by Mullet Man with Glenn Lynch on board. For trainer Ruth Cooper, this was her third win in the Grafton Prelude.
She told the Daily Examiner that she expects the horse to run well in the Grafton Cup too.
“The field he beat today had city winners in it so he showed he is up to a race like the Grafton Cup,” Cooper said.
The other major race of the day, the 1,206 metre John Carlton Cup, saw the Peter Ball trained Villamill ridden by Jason Taylor first across the finish line
“It was a good solid win,” Taylor told the Daily Examiner. “She began well and I gave her a squeeze to get across on the rails behind the leaders.
“She appreciated the good speed on in the race and dashed clear. She started to feel the pinch inside 100 metres but had enough momentum to get to the line.”
For plenty of photos and videos of this year’s Westlawn Race Day, check out our YourWestlawn Facebook page.