Just as early November in Melbourne means Melbourne Cup, in early May the small outback Queensland town of Quilpie has its very own dose of Cup fever.
Running this year on May 5, the Brown and Hurley Quilpie Cup is shaping up to be one of the premiere events on the Outback racing calendar with over $50,000 in prizemoney and trophies for the horses and over $5 000 in Fashions on the Field prizes.
On Cup eve, Friday night 4 May, festivities will commence with the Brown & Hurley Quilpie Cup Calcutta to be held at the Quilpie Club from 6.30pm. The Calcutta is always an evening of fun and furious bidding, topped off with live music.
Cup Day traditionally kicks off at Bulloo Park, the home of the Quilpie Diggers’ Race Club, with the President’s Shout at 11.30am. This event welcomes all race patrons with complimentary drinks and canapes to ease everyone into the Cup spirit. The six-race programme featuring follows with the feature race the Brown & Hurley Quilpie Cup being the focal point.
Not to be outdone by the equine component of a good day at the races, the Haulmark Trailers Fashions on the Field has become legendary for its major millinery prize, bespoke jewellery commissioned by the Quilpie Diggers Club. Every year master jeweller Alan Thomson creates an extraordinary piece in the gems of the Outback; Quilpie boulder opal, Argyle diamonds, Queensland sapphires and Broome pearls. Needless to say, the competition is fierce as Quilpie fashionistas parade in elegant racewear which would be perfectly at home at Flemington.
The day concludes with on course dinner and dancing into the night with live music.
Detailed programmes will be issued as the date draws closer but please message the Quilpie Diggers’ Race Club Facebook page with any queries.
The Quilpie Cup is a scheduled Racing Queensland event with full national broadcasting and presents a fun day of racing with a six race program.
DATE — May 2018
TROPHIES — $50,000 in prizemoney and trophies for the horses over $5 000 in Fashions on the Field
Friday preceding Cup
An entertaining prelude to the next-day’s events is a Cup Calcutta. An auction of each horse is conducted at a Quilpie hotel/club to the attendees at the Calcutta, who have the opportunity to bid for horses.
Saturday Race Day
The day attracts horses, trainers and jockeys from the country racing circuit and hundreds of spectators from a wide region. The day’s activities are:
- President’s Shout welcomes all race patrons with complimentary drinks and canapés
- Six-race program – feature race the Quilpie Cup, each race called and keenly followed by betters and spectators
- Fashions on the Field – major millinery prize is the Jewel of the West. This is a statement piece of jewellery displaying the boulder opal local to Quilpie and coveted on the FOTF circuit. The bespoke jewellery is designed and created by master jeweller Alan Thomson and highlights gems of the Outback (Quilpie boulder opal, Argyle diamonds, Queensland sapphires and Broome pearls.)
- An open bar and catering; music and lively conversation
- The day concludes with on course dinner and with live music.
- Race Day Book lists all details of the day’s racing; sponsors and highlights to watch.