The Gilgandra Cup
Gilgandra is a small town in New South Wales, Australia, in the state’s central west region. It is at the convergence spot for the Castlereagh, Newell and Oxley highways, so it is easily reached and a logical seat for Gilgandra Shire administration. The name is an Aboriginal word for a long waterhole, which may refer to the Castlereagh River that the town stands upon. The town has a proud history in many beloved Australian sports, even boasting a Sporting Hall of Fame to honour local heroes, and horse racing is no exception. The Gilgandra Cup is the highlight of the of the town’s equestrian sports.
The site of the town had been previously settled, with a post office established in 1867, a school opened in 1881 and the courthouse’s first hearing in 1884. Following its proclamation in 1888, Gilgandra’s first town blocks were sold in 1889. The Shire itself was constituted in 1906 and the town has been growing quietly since then. It is still often affectionately known as the Town of Windmills because of how many were erected in the days of yore. Today there are youth clubs, skateboard ramps and swimming pools for young people, as well as a technical college and an aero club that serves as a flight school. Some charming tourist attractions also await, including an observatory, quaint cafes, the Rural Museum, Cactus World which houses a huge range of cacti, and affordable accommodation. A World War 1 recruitment march to Sydney was begun here, and was named the Coo-ee March after the sound that marchers made as they moved through each town. The story is told in the Coo-ee Heritage Centre, while the Hitchen House honours other wars such as World War II, the Vietnam War and the Boer War.
Horseracing in Gilgandra
The Gilgandra Racecourse is managed by the town’s Jockey Club has a circumference of 1663 metres and has a slight incline to the finishing post, which makes its finishing straight of 160 meters more challenging that it might first appear. It is one of the hosts of the Melbourne Cup, and holds other racing events as well, with the Gilgandra Cup the highlight of the calendar. There are several traditions surrounding these event and adding to its general festive atmosphere, including a Fashions in the Field competition, free children’s activities and a Jockey Club luncheon that anybody is welcome to attend. In 2015, to mark the centenary of the Co-ee March, the Jockey Club also launched the 1800 metre Coo-ee Cup.
Putting money down on these horse racing betting events enhances the enjoyment for many fans, as they are forced to analyse the horses and their riders and get to understand them better. There are plenty of wagering options on the Gilgandra Cup and all other equestrian events held at the track, and lots of advice and tips to consider before placing any bets. Punters should be careful and start small, but they could be handsomely rewarded and should explore this exciting world, whether online, at their local bookie or even at the races.