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The Kurow Jockey Club's annual day was not all about the $25,000 Kurow Cup, or any of the other seven races - it was a big day for the community in the Waitaki Valley, Kurow Jockey Club president Simon Williamson said.
''It's the biggest day in the Waitaki Valley,'' he said. ''It's a community day. And a lot of the people here aren't racegoers, they're holidaymakers camping around the lake having their annual day out, really.
''It's huge - it's for the community, it's a get-together ... everyone comes out and talks to their neighbours and their friends. It's a great family get-together; there's never any trouble; everyone brings their barbecues and their chilly bins.''
''The fields are good, the trainers have always supported us as well. We take great pride in our track, it's come up as a good three today, which is perfect for racing on ... which means it's got a bit of sting out of the ground.''
Surveys of racegoers showed that 17% of those who attended were at races for the first time - ''and 100% of them enjoyed their time and said they would come back again''.
''For thoroughbred races that's a great story in itself, isn't it. That's how you attract people to the game.''
His son was home from Australia, and his daughter was home from England.
''All my family's home,'' he said.