Racing NSW increase Wagga Town Plate prizemoney to $150,000

ON THE UP: Mark Pegus accepts his trophy for winning this year's Wagga Town Plate with the Lee and Anthony Freedman-trained Santa Ana Lane. Picture: Kieren L Tilly
ON THE UP: Mark Pegus accepts his trophy for winning this year's Wagga Town Plate with the Lee and Anthony Freedman-trained Santa Ana Lane. Picture: Kieren L Tilly

NEXT year’s Wagga Town Plate will be worth a record $150,000.

Racing NSW revealed further prizemoney increases on Wednesday and have increased Wagga’s feature sprint to $150,000.

The Wagga Town Plate (1200m) is one of five country feature races to receive the cash injection, alongside the Wellington Boot and Port Macquarie, Goulburn and Tamworth Cups.

It will put the Town Plate alongside the listed $150,000 Wagga Gold Cup as Murrumbidgee Turf Club’s richest race.

MTC chief executive Scott Sanbrook described the increase as the ‘most significant’ in the race’s rich history.

“This would be the most significant prizemoney boost in the history of the Town Plate,” Sanbrook said.

“That’s a big achievement, considering the longevity of the race which was run on the very first Wagga Cup day in 1873.

“The club has worked hard over the past five years to build the stature of the Plate and we are very fortunate that Racing NSW has now earmarked the sprint for the $150,000 stature.

“It’s quite remarkable to think the race was worth $65,000 in 2012 and is now more than double that.

“It provides another very rich carrot to dangle in front of the top trainers come carnival time.”

The announcement comes just a day after The Daily Advertiser reported that both Town Plate and Gold Cup days have been awarded country showcase status, where every race on both days will increase to a minimum of $30,000.

Racing NSW chief executive Peter V’Landys AM believes the Town Plate is a deserved recipient of the increase.

“These are well-established country feature races. The increase will provide impetus for the clubs to further develop these race meetings and build their recognition not only within racing, but to their local community,” V’Landys said.

The Town Plate jumps $40,000 from $110,000 this year.