IN a new initiative, the Southland Racing Club has upped the odds.
Club president Sean Bellew was the auctioneer last Friday when saddle cloths and strappers bibs for the upcoming season went under the hammer.
To add vibrancy and colour to the sport, 14 saddle cloths and bibs were auctioned, with each one to be branded with the winning sponsor’s name and colours.
Extra cloths and bib sets were also offered for when a racing field was larger than the average to give smaller businesses the opportunity to also take part, he said.
This was the first time, nationally, and possibly internationally, this concept had been offered to businesses, Mr Bellew said.
As part of the package, each sponsor’s number would also feature at every race day throughout the season depending on the number of horses racing, and during the Ascot Park Christmas At The Races the racing would also be shown on the big screen.
As well as being a tri-coded (greyhounds, gallops and harness) racing facility, Mr Bellew said the Ascot Park Racecourse was the second-most used course in Australasia.
With international coverage via Trackside, it meant races at Ascot Park could potentially be seen around the world, so having strategic branding on the strappers bibs and saddle cloths would also increase sponsors’ branding, he said.
After the season, the bib and saddle sets would be given to each sponsor as a souvenir.