The Murwillumbah Racecourse is firming up for the Tweed River Jockey Club's Melbourne Cup day meet on Tuesday.
The Murwillumbah Racecourse is firming up for the Tweed River Jockey Club's Melbourne Cup day meet on Tuesday. Liana Turner

Racecourse primed, field set to delight at Murwillumbah

THAT famous first Tuesday in November is upon us.

From once a year punters to regular patrons, local thoroughbred racing fans will be heading to the little track among the cane fields when the Tweed River Jockey Club hosts its traditional Melbourne Cup meeting in a few days time.

Over the years, Murwillumbah racecourse has built up a well earned reputation for celebrating the day, and celebrating it in style.

The sartorial elegance on display has been known to rival Melbourne's, and with full on-course TAB facilities, plus a big local and interstate bookies' ring, you'd be forgiven for thinking you were at Flemington.

Together with the pageants and interstate punting, a local five-event card will be sure to keep patrons engrossed.

The first of the day is due to get under way at 12.55pm with the running of the Elders Real Estate Benchmark 50 handicap (1010m).

Most attention will be focused later in the afternoon on one of the feature events, race five, the Ellis Baxter Solicitor and Attorneys Benchmark 45 handicap.

The race will be the last on the card (4.15pm) and run over the stayer's test of 2000m.

The racing surface is on the improve and currently rated a Soft 5 after collecting about 8mm of rain during the week.

Though it should remain mainly dry and sunny in the interim, if there's moisture about, the top-weight General Assault will be hard to be beat.

He loves it wet, and won in Heavy going just a few runs ago on his home track of the Gold Coast, over 1800m.

In the likely drier conditions expected, the Beaudesert-based pair of Prince Morpheus and Star Strucked both look ideally suited.

Of the two, Prince Morpheus has shown a distinct liking for going over a bit of ground, and one of his two career wins was over 1800m.

He's also had a couple of runners-up cheques come his way in recent outings, inspiring confidence that he'll be there at the finish.

For more information on the day's festivities, visit the TRJC website at tweedriverjockeyclub.com.au.

All details of special bus timetables, covering Murwillumbah, the Tweed and Gold coasts can be viewed at the website. 

Gates open at 10am.