Liquor and Gaming NSW

Minister supports temporary closure of stand at Royal Randwick racecourse

Issued:Wednesday 31 August, 2011   [PDF,208kb]

The Minister for Racing, George Souris, has supported the actions taken by the Australian Turf Club in transferring the Randwick meeting on Saturday, September 3, to Warwick Farm due to a public safety issue.

This follows the discovery by engineers of a rusted cable holding up beams on the roof of the QEII Stand at Royal Randwick.

"The safety of the public is paramount and the Board of the Australian Turf Club took the only action open to it in transferring the meeting to Warwick Farm," Mr Souris said.

"I am advised that the discovery of the danger to public safety came about after some exploratory work on the concrete roof beams of the QEII.

"Engineers tested one beam which was easily accessible, found the problem and decided that it was unsafe to the public.

"I am also advised that the roof of the stand will have to be removed and all the beams and cables inspected and that could take up to a week".

Mr Souris said any future action, including the transfer of other meetings, will depend on what the engineers find once the roof is fully inspected.

"We won‟t know how the Spring Carnival, the jewel in the NSW racing calendar, will be affected, with the George Main Stakes meeting set down for September 17.

"The Australian Turf Club will decide on further action following the engineers‟ report and will keep me and the public apprised of the situation.

„However, I repeat that public safety is the only consideration and the QEII Stand will not re-open until that can be guaranteed," Mr Souris said.