HRV Planning and Development Manager Rob Pongho at Ballan with club president Adrian Darcy.
Harness Racing Victoria (HRV) representatives are visiting numerous areas throughout Victoria to bolster grassroots harness racing communities.
For example, Ballan – a training club – was visited by HRV Planning and Development Manager Rob Pongho earlier this week to discuss improvements needed at the venue.
About 20 horses are trained in the area with some of the trainers that use the Ballan venue including Jen Micallef, Eddie Conroy, Larry Lynch and Tim McGuigan.
HRV plans to assist the club to top-dress the track, put up some fencing and day yards as well as plant some trees for shade.
Mr Pongho said the improvements would see trainers able to better utilise the facility.
“Lots of trainers say if they had some day yards they could leave a horse there as opposed to having to bring them to the venue each week, so the track would get more usage and it would make life easier for the participants,” he said.
“We need to ensure grassroots participants are looked after because all our horsemen and women play a vital role in ensuring the horse population and field sizes remain strong.”
Association of Victorian Clubs (AVCHRC) CEO David Brick said it was important grassroots clubs and trainers were looked after.
“It’s important from a grassroots point of view that assistance is provided to maintain these types of public training facilities,” Mr Brick said.
“There are about 20 horses trained in the area that use the facility. They’ve got access to not only the 800-metre harness track but also the former grass gallops track, which is no longer used for thoroughbred racing.”
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