THE Invercargill Harness Racing Club will host a day of harness racing at Ascot Park Raceway in Invercargill next Thursday, October 29.
The meeting is a twilight event, starting at 3pm and would feature the running of several of the region’s premier harness races which were not held at the conclusion of last season, due to Covid-19 restrictions in place at the time.
The annual Diamonds Day harness race meeting, one of the premier events on the Southern Harness Racing calendar, was scheduled for Sunday, April 26 but could not be held.
Instead, the major group three races scheduled for that day, the Alabar Southern Supremacy Stakes Final, the Macca Lodge/Nevele R Stud Southland Oaks Final and the Diamond Creek Farm Classic, would now take place next Thursday.
The Southern Belle Series Final, originally scheduled for Winton on April 18, was another casualty of the Covid-19 crisis, and it would also be run on this date.
The Oaks and the Supremacy were traditionally races for 3-year-olds and the Diamond Creek Farm Classic was for 2-year-olds, while the Southern Belle Final was normally for 4-year-olds, but the races would field horses which would have been eligible on the dates the races were originally scheduled.
The races would be the culmination of several of the major harness race series in the south and, despite the delay, there would be some colossal clashes between some top stars of the track looming at the Ascot Park Raceway in Invercargill.