Clubs & Courses
Rangitikei R.C.Clubs & Courses Index
The Rangitikei Racing Club is one of New Zealand’s oldest “Racing” Clubs and this proud Club held its 150th anniversary celebration in 2007.
Racing was a popular pastime in the Rangitikei district from the early 1850’s and in 1859 James Bull Snr opened a store and later a hotel there – which is how the township of Bulls got its name. His son Jim Bull Jnr. bred and raced many good horses, specialising in jumpers. Jim’s sons Lindsay and Leighton were first class amateur horsemen in their day, with Leighton becoming a committeeman of the Marton Jockey Club. The family tradition has in turn been carried on by Leighton’s son Jim Bull, who enjoyed a long and distinguished career in racing administration highlighted by his time as the President of the New Zealand Racing Conference. Jim Bull himself won the Rangitikei Gold Cup on three successive occasions in the mid 1980’s with his very good galloper Magnitude. Since his passing the Bull Family have kept the tradition going with sponsorship from James Bull Holdings and Aberdeen on Broadway.
The Rangitikei Racing Club established the Bulls racecourse around 1878 and raced there until 1969 when the Club shifted its activities to Awapuni. A few years ago the Rangitikei Racing Club decided to sell the old racecourse to local trainer Stewart Mitchell who has since sold the course to Raymond Connors. The Bulls track is now a private training centre for Raymond and other trainers in the district.
Today the Rangitikei Racing Club conducts two race meetings each season at Awapuni, with the Rangitikei Gold Cup, which was first run in 1875, held at the Club’s May feature meeting. A few years back the Rangitikei Racing Club faced an uncertain future, with the cost of maintaining their Bulls training track and contributing to the cost of developing the facilities at Awapuni proving to be a burden on the Club’s limited finances. The sale of their racecourse and the development of the RACE concept has strengthened the Rangitikei Racing Club’s position. The Club was rewarded with another Saturday date in 2013 held in November.
Entry to Awapuni Racecourse is free for all Rangitikei Racing Club meetings
The colour, atmosphere and excitement of a day at the races provides an entertainment experience unlike any other. There is no better way to be part of the action than to become a member at one of the Racing clubs that race at Awapuni. Join today and you and your guest will be able to come racing at Awapuni racemeeting throughout the year. Membership at Awapuni can also entitle you to rights at Wellington Racing Club racemeetings.
Membership Options Include:
- Race Premier membership $175
- RACE (full) membership $100
- Country Club Member & Guest $40
- Country Club Single Member $30
- Under 30 Member $30
Hospitality packages are on offer at most meetings throughout the year. This is an opportunity to entertain guests, clients, staff or friends in style, with first class facilities and uninterrupted views of the course.
The package will include:
- Buffet luncheon
- Cash bar or all-inclusive beverage package
- Complimentary tea and coffee
- Racebook per guest
- Private tote facilities
- MC to host the day
Members and patrons need to be aware that Awapuni Racecourse as part of its obligation under the Sale of Liquor Act operates a total ban on BYO alcohol anywhere on the Awapuni racecourse grounds.
The policy was introduced after discussions with the New Zealand Police and local liquor licensing authorities. On-course patrons may still bring picnic hampers with food and non-alcoholic drinks on any day. All patrons and their possessions will be subject to searches before entering the racecourse. Patrons with prohibited items (alcohol) will be asked to dispose of the alcohol or have the items confiscated.
Patrons who refuse to participate in searches may be denied entry. Patrons found with BYO alcohol on the grounds will have the alcohol confiscated and may be evicted from the venue.
Rangitikei Racing Club
PO Box 52
Palmerston North 4440
T: 06 356 4940Racing Manager: Kim Treweek
M: 021 814 632
In 2007 the Rangitikei Racing Club celebrated its 150th Anniversary with the richest and most prestigious racemeeting the Club has ever conducted. As a result of the success of this meeting, the RACE (Inc) Awapuni Partnership of Clubs has allocated the Rangitikei Racing Club the high profile May licence to conduct its Gold Cup Raceday.
The feature race on the programme, the Listed Rangitikei Gold Cup, will be run for a stake of $50,000. Total stakes on offer will be $125,000, which will provide strong incentive for the best horses, trainers and jockeys to travel to Awapuni for the day.