One of the country’s biggest race days, the New Zealand Cup meeting at Riccarton, Christchurch, has been postponed due to an unsafe track.

Riccarton Races : Abandoned | Cancelled | Tixel

The New Zealand 1000 Guineas is a set-weights Group 1 race held at Riccarton racecourse in Christchurch, New Zealand for three-year-old fillies over the distance of 1600m.

Riccarton Races : Abandoned | Cancelled | Tixel

Date: November 12, 2022
Location: Riccarton Park Racecourse     
Prize Money:        $400,000
Distance: 1600m

The NZ 1000, which complements the New Zealand 2000 Guineas a week prior, was first run in 1973 and is based off the English equivalent that is run at Newmarket every year in May.

Held on the final Saturday of Christchurch’s New Zealand Cup Week in November, the race offers a purse if NZ$300,000.

The New Zealand 1000 Guineas is one of the key events on the Kiwi racing calendar (which also includes the City of Auckland Cup) and routinely draws the best fillies in the country. The winner of the race invariably goes on to claim Filly of the Year honours.

Riccarton Races Abandoned 

The prestigious New Zealand Cup thoroughbred classic at Christchurch’s Riccarton racetrack has been abandoned, after slippery conditions almost caused calamity in the third event  of the day. 

Riccarton Races : Abandoned | Cancelled | Tixel

Saturday’s programme was to feature the Cup and 1000 Guineas – the climax of Cup Week – with 15,000 punters on course for the 12-race card.

But the meeting brought to a halt, when apprentice jockey Lily Sutherland and Harmonious slipped at the top of the straight in race three, prompting several inspections and running repairs to bring the track back to a usable state.

No horses or jockey were injured in the incident, but the risk was enough to end racing for the day.

“On the firm surface underneath, the fact that the grass is quite long and with a little bit of rain overnight, it just hasn’t dried underneath which means that there is an area of the track that is unsafe,” said leading jockey Lisa Allpress.

“There is more than just the one slip mark and there are quite a few out there.

Riccarton Races : Abandoned | Cancelled | Tixel

“We really tried [to save the meeting] and with daylight saving hours available, we might have been able to put the meeting back, but with the length of the grass and the amount of moisture in it, it just isn’t going to dry out.

Riccarton Races Cancelled 

One of New Zealand’s biggest race meetings of the season has been canceled at Riccarton today because of safety concerns after a horse slipped in the third race.

The New Zealand Cup and 1000 Guineas thoroughbred race meeting was supposed to be the climax of Cup week in Christchurch and attracted a sold-out crowd of 15,000 people on a scorching hot Canterbury day.

But trouble started when Harmonious, ridden by apprentice Lily Sutherland, slipped after losing its footing at the top of the straight in the third race. Also Harmonious did not fall, and no horses or jockeys were injured in the incident.

Riccarton Races : Abandoned | Cancelled | Tixel

But the incident raised concerns about the condition of the track, which jockeys labelled patchy, and after three separate inspections and two unsuccessful attempts at remedial work, the meeting was deemed unsafe.

New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing officials and those at Riccarton will work together to determine when the remaining races can be held, with either Sunday or Monday as the two most likely dates.

That will still cost the industry and club enormously in lost turnover, particularly if the meeting moves to a Monday.


Riccarton Racecourse is located within Christchurch, New Zealand. The exact postal address is 165 Racecourse Road, Sockburn, Christchurch, Christchurch, Christchurch, New Zealand.

Riccarton Races : Abandoned | Cancelled | Tixel

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By Rishabh

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