Saturday 28th October 2023
After two years of being inoperative and a month after a successful soft opening, Charleville’s revered racetrack track is officially back in action. The grand reopening was on Saturday 28th October and was attended by government dignitaries, political leaders, representatives from Queensland’s racing world, local legends, and an enthusiastic crowd of both residents and visitors.
Early in the afternoon, The Warrego Racing Club saw the arrival of the Official party, including the Minister for Education, Minister for Industrial Relations, and Minister for Racing The Hon Grace Grace, and Nikki Boyd, Assistant Minister for Local Government, MP Anne Leahy and the Mayor of Murweh Shire, Shaun (Zoro) Radnedge along with fellow Councillors.
After the third race, emcee Kiaarn Holland from Sky Racing invited Minister Grace to officially reopen the track. A round of hearty applause followed the ribbon-cutting ceremony, with Minister Grace saying the government is proud to have supported the $4.5 million project. “We’ve had a brand-new track laid here and it is fantastic…The Palaszczuk government and myself as racing minister support country racing and it is going from strength to strength,” Minister Grace concluded.
The official opening was followed by the presentation of the keys to the city by Mayor of Murweh Shire, Shaun (Zoro) Radnedge, to colourful local identify “Rude Jude” and formally declaring the town to be renamed RudeJudesville, albeit temporarily.
One of the highlights of the afternoon was the Undie Dash for the Cash with the winner receiving $1000 prize money.
Considered one of the best racetracks in Western Queensland, over the last two years the track has overcome engineering challenges and is now fully operational with local jockeys and owners praising the rebuild.
“It is a spectacular track,” said Mayor of Murweh Shire, Shaun (Zoro) Radnedge of the newly refurbished racetrack. “Everyone’s done a spectacular job and we’re grateful for all the support.”
Festivities continued into the night with the Horn Dogs setting up and the bars open till late.
The mayor said that the racetrack brought so much more than racing for residents. “Racing is a major event in Charleville for lots of reasons. It’s a great place to socialise, have a few drinks with friends, and maybe meet some new ones. It’s an important part of county life, so its return is great news.”