Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival

After the autumn racing action in Melbourne and Sydney during the early months of the calendar year, the top class thoroughbred events move up to Queensland during the cooler months for the Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival.

Part of the wider-spanning Queensland Winter Racing Carnival that begins in late April, the Brisbane Winter Carnival officially consists of five Group 1 race days from May – June at Doomben Racecourse and Eagle Farm Racecourse.

Leading up to the majors are Eagle Farm’s Victory Stakes Day in late April and the Gold Coast’s AD Hollindale Stakes Day in early May. After the Brisbane classics are run and won, the last of Queensland’s Group 1 meetings is the Tattersall’s Tiara Day, which we cover in this section despite Tatt’s owning rights to events on the card.

That brings the Group 1 Brisbane race meetings up to six and in total there are eight elite level races to enjoy across the Sunshine State’s major racing carnival. Queensland’s richest race is the $1.5 million Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap (1400m) held in early – mid June.

Brisbane Racing Carnival Key Races

Doomben 10,000

The $700,000 weight-for-age Doomben 10,000 kicks off Group 1 racing in Brisbane for the winter.

  • Track: Doomben
  • Distance: 1200m
  • Conditions: Weight-for-age
  • Status: Group 1
  • Prize Money: $700,000
  • First Prize: $448,000
  • Sponsor: James Boag
  • First Run: 1933
  • Reigning Champion: Music Magnate (2016)

Doomben Cup

The Doomben Cup is a weight-for-age race and the key staying showdown for gallopers during the winter in Queensland.

  • Track: Doomben
  • Distance: 2000m
  • Conditions: Weight-for-age
  • Status: Group 1
  • Prize Money: $650,000
  • First Prize: $416,000
  • Sponsor: Hardy Brothers
  • First Run: 1933
  • Reigning Champion: Our Ivanhowe (2016)

Kingsford Smith Cup (Formerly BTC Cup)

The Kingsford-Smith Cup is the race formerly known as the BTC Cup, now run at Eagle Farm in late May over 1300m as a lead-up to the Stradbroke Handicap.

  • Track: Eagle Farm
  • Distance: 1300m
  • Conditions: Weight-for-age
  • Status: Group 1
  • Prize Money: $700,000
  • First Prize: $448,000
  • Sponsor: Darley
  • First Run: 1964
  • Reigning Champion: Malaguerra (2016)

Stradbroke Handicap

The Stradbroke Handicap offering $1.5 million in prize money is Brisbane’s richest race and takes place at the tail-end of the carnival on the same day as the JJ Atkins and Queensland Derby.

  • Track: Eagle Farm
  • Distance: 1400m
  • Conditions: Open Handicap
  • Status: Group 1
  • Prize Money: $1.5 million
  • First Prize: $1 million
  • Sponsor: UBET
  • First Run: 1890
  • Reigning Champion: Under The Louvre (2016)

Major Race Days

See below for the full breakdown of the major Race Days held throughout the Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival 2017.

BTC Cup Day

Feature Races – Doomben Racecourse:

  • $500,000 Group 1 BTC Cup (1200m)
  • $175,000 Group 2 Champagne Classic (1200m)
  • $125,000 Group 3 Rough Habit Plate (1400m)
  • $125,000 Group 3 JRA Cup (1200m)

The first official Group 1 race meeting held in Brisbane each year, the line-up at Doomben in mid-May is headlined by the $500,000 Group 1 BTC Cup (1200m) for the sprinters. The weight-for-age classic has been dominated by upset results over the years, while the most famous BTC Cup winner to date is Black Caviar (2011).

The major support race on the card is the Group 2 Champagne Classic (1200m) for two-years-old horses heading towards the Group 1 JJ Atkins (1600m) run later in the carnival at Eagle Farm on Stradbroke Handicap Day, while the Group 1 Queensland Derby (2400m) hopefuls face off in the Rough Habit Plate.

Doomben Cup Day

Feature Races – Doomben Racecourse:

  • $650,000 Group 1 Doomben Cup (2000m)
  • $175,000 Group 2 The Roses (2000m)
  • $175,000 Group 3 BRC Sprint (1350m)
  • $300,000 Group 3 Fred Best Classic (1350m)

The second Group 1 race meeting of the carnival, the day’s namesake race is the lucrative $650,000 Group 1 Doomben Cup (2000m) run under weight-for-age conditions. The key lead-up race to the Doomben Cup is the AD Hollindale Stakes at the Gold Coast a fortnight earlier, the double last completed by Streama (2014).

Also on the program is the Group 2 The Roses (2000m) for three-year-old fillies heading towards the following month’s Group 1 Queensland Oaks (2400m) at Eagle Farm, and the possible Stradbroke Handicap types running in the BRC Sprint.

Doomben 10,000 Day

Feature Races – Doomben Racecourse:

  • $750,000 Group 1 Doomben 10000 (1350m)
  • $250,000 Group 2 BRC Sires’ Produce Stakes (1350m)
  • $150,000 Group 3 Grand Prix Stakes (2200m)
  • $150,000 Group 3 Glenlogan Park Stakes (1350m)
  • $175,000 Group 3 Lord Mayor’s Cup (1600m)
  • $175,000 Group 3 Premier’s Cup (2200m)

The third Group 1 race day of the Brisbane Winter Carnival each year, the major race on the card is the $750,000 Group 1 Doomben 10,000 (1350m). The weight-for-age event offers the most prize money of any of the Brisbane races so far and many notable horses have won the event including dual champion Apache Cat (2008-09).

Plenty of other Group races support the Doomben 10,000 in late May including the two-year-olds continuing their journey to the JJ Atkins the next month via the Group 2 BRC Sires’ Produce Stakes (1350m).

More Doncaster Mile-bound runners face off in the $175,000 Group 2 Ajax Stakes (1500m) before the Golden Slipper race continues with a ballot exemption into the classic on offer to both the Magic Night Stakes and Pago Pago Stakes winners on this card.

Queensland Oaks Day

Feature Races – Eagle Farm Racecourse:

  • $500,000 Group 1 Queensland Oaks (2400m)
  • $250,000 Group 2 Eagle Farm Cup (2200m)
  • $175,000 Group 2 QTC Cup (1300m)

Moving on from the Winter Carnival action at Doomben, Queensland Oaks Day is the first meeting held at Eagle Farm Racecourse, which is considered Brisbane’s premier track. The day is highlighted by the three-year-old staying fillies contesting the $500,000 Group 1 Queensland Oaks (2400m), most notably won by Chris Waller’s super star Winx in 2015.

Two Group 2 races are the other features on the program with the weight-for-age Eagle Farm Cup worth a quarter of a million dollars, and the QTC Cup run under quality handicap conditions.

Stradbroke Handicap Day

Feature Races – Eagle Farm Racecourse:

  • $1,500,000 Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap (1400m)
  • $600,000 Group 1 Queensland Derby (2400m)
  • $600,000 Group 1 JJ Atkins (1600m)
  • $400,000 Group 2 Queensland Guineas (1600m)
  • $300,000 Group 2 Brisbane Cup (2400m)
  • $200,000 Group 2 Dane Ripper Stakes (1400m)

The biggest and best day of the Queensland Winter Racing Carnival each year, Stradbroke Handicap Day features a bumper three Group 1 classics.

Queensland’s richest race is the $1.5 million Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap (1400m), the feature famous for the talent rich fields it attracts as well as its history of upset results. The three-year-olds face off in the $600,000 Group 1 Queensland Derby (2400m), the key lead-up for which is the Grand Prix Stakes with the double last achieved by Hawkspur (2013). The last of the Group 1s is the $600,000 JJ Atkins (1600m) for the juveniles run over the mile where Sydney visitors have a dominant recent record.

As well as all that the Queensland Guineas, Brisbane Cup and Dane Ripper Stakes all have big prize money on offer as the key support races on the program.

Tattersall’s Tiara Day

Feature Races – Eagle Farm Racecourse:

  • $500,000 Group 1 Tattersall’s Tiara (1400m)
  • $200,000 Group 3 Tattersall’s Cup (2200m)
  • $175,000 Group 3 WJ Healy Stakes (1200m)

Tattersall’s Tiara runs in late June two weeks after Stradbroke Handicap Day and is not officially part of the Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival. It is host to the last Queensland Group 1 race of the season with the fillies and mares facing off in the Tattersall’s Tiara worth half-a-million in prize money. The fillies have a gun record over their older rivals in the race and the Dane Ripper Stakes is the key lead-up, the double most recently achieved by Cosmic Endeavour (2014).