MURRAY Mallee Racing will break from tradition when the first Mildura Cup Carnival is held in August this weekend.
The carnival will start on Friday and end on Sunday.
It will be the first time the two-day carnival is not held in May after changes to Racing Victoria’s annual race program.
An extra $10,000 in the Euston Club Resort Mildura Cup will also see prizemoney increase to $70,000 for the feature race of the carnival.
Murray Mallee Racing sales and marketing executive Sheree Keyte said the move was hoped to entice more people to Sandilong Park for the weekend.
“The idea of the change is to get closer to the spring weather and to get closer to the Spring Racing Carnival,” Ms Keyte said.
“The Spring Racing Carnival has a greater association with people that don’t have a heavy interest in racing because I think people actually start to think about racing at this time of year.
“By changing our carnival from May to August hopefully people can relate to it better.”
The $35,000 final of the Betfair Mallee Murray Racing Winter Series Sprint will be the highlight of the eight-race fixture on Friday.
Ms Keyte said there would be at least eight races on Sunday, with room for one more depending on nominations.
Ms Keyte said sales and bookings were also looking promising, with South Australian jazz band Shirazzamatazz set to entertain race-goers.
“They’ve been steady, with the change in dates and being a relatively new event to a degree, it’s hard to judge,” she said.
“Going on our May carnival the figures look very similar.
“We’d be hoping to get a couple of thousand people to the carnival so that would be a good result.”
For more of this story, purchase your copy of Monday's Sunraysia Daily 20/08/2012.