THE world’s best jockey Hugh Bowman could be riding in the Corey Brown Cup to be run on Wingham Cup day in June.
Bowman, who steered the mighty mare Winx to 26 wins, along with fellow leading hoop Tye Angland, could join Brown in the race.
The Corey Brown Cup will be run for the first time this year. This is in recognition of Brown’s second Melbourne Cup win last year.
Brown, who was the special guest at last week’s launch of the Manning Valley Race Clyv, said he will be a definite starter and added he’s determined the win the race named in his honour.
Manning Valley Race Club chairman Greg Coleman said Bowman and Angland have been mentioned as possible starters in the race. He has spoken to Bowman previously as the Grafton Carnival and he expressed a desire to ride at more country meetings.
Bowman is from Dunedo.
“He’s more country than Corey (Brown),’’ Mr Coleman laughed.
The cup will carry a minimum prizemoney of $20,000 although this could be increased. This will be discussed by the club’s board soon. Mr Coleman assured the cup will now be a regular fixture on the club’s calendar. It follows the naming of the Corey Brown Pavilion at the Bushland Drive track by Taree-Wingham Race Club after Brown’s 2009 Melbourne Cup win on Shocking.
Meanwhile Mr Coleman confirmed the crowd at last week's Harrington Cup was a record for the meeting.
“We had 600 more paying customers than last year and that doesn’t include members and those who came through race day packages,’’ Mr Coleman said.
Takings in the Winning Post Function Centre bar increased $3000 on last year while the barbecue takings were up $1600.
Mr Coleman said good weather and strong support from the Harrington community contributed to the turnout along with the fact that Brown was there along with his Melbourne Cup trophies. Brown mixed freely with the public, Mr Coleman added.
“He had his photo taken with everyone from young kids to grannies,’’ Mr Coleman said.
“Nothing was too much trouble for him.’’
Mr Coleman said the race club will continue to engage the community, with the next major meeting to be in April when the Gloucester Cup is run. This was previously under the auspices of the Krambach club.
He added the club is well placed following what was a relatively smooth integration between the Taree-Wingham and Krambach entities. Mr Coleman said the club had a strong and enthusiastic board and will consider a number of innovations in the coming year to increase the profile of racing in the area.