VRC welcomes green light from Government for Cup Week crowds

10 October 2021 Written by VRC

The Victoria Racing Club (VRC) welcomes today’s announcement by the Victorian Government that up to 10,000 patrons have been approved to attend Flemington for Lexus Melbourne Cup Day on the first Tuesday of November, in line with the State Government’s plans for the safe reopening of events across Victoria. 

Up to 10,000 patrons will also be present on Kennedy Oaks Day on 4 November and VRC Mackinnon Stakes Day on 6 November if the 80 per cent double-vaccination threshold has been passed in accordance with State Government requirements.  Current State Government advice is that patrons will not be able to be on course for Penfolds Victoria Derby Day on 30 October. 

VRC Chairman Neil Wilson said the Club is very pleased the Melbourne Cup Carnival will be a key platform for the reopening of events across Victoria, and is grateful to be in a position to host racing fans at Flemington for three days of Cup Week.  

“The Lexus Melbourne Cup is Australia’s original major event, with a global audience reach of 750 million people, and is a significant driver of economic activity for Victoria,” said Mr Wilson. 

“Although patrons won’t be present for Penfolds Victoria Derby Day, we will deliver an off-course experience via our Network 10 broadcast and digital channels fitting of the most important day of racing on the Australian calendar. 

“We are delighted that the ‘race that stops a nation’™ will herald the re-start of our city.” 

VRC CEO Steve Rosich thanked VRC members, partners and owners for their patience and understanding over the past 18 months, and said the Club would now work closely with the Victorian Government and health authorities to secure a deeper understanding of the event parameters for attendance. 

“We are ready to host a COVID-safe event with crowds across three days of the Melbourne Cup Carnival that utilises our numerous hospitality venues and expansive grounds, marking a major step in the reopening of our city and the state of Victoria,” said Mr Rosich. 

“We will now work with the Victorian Government to fully understand the event requirements for the VRC and attendees, and we will execute our plans accordingly. We will share further information with our members, partners, owners and the public as soon as possible and by 15 October at the latest.” 

Mr Wilson added, “The VRC sincerely thanks the Victorian Government, Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events Martin Pakula, Racing Victoria and the broader industry for their support of our event plan and their endorsement of the Melbourne Cup Carnival as a major event for Victoria and Australia.”