Nestled in the lush, tropical surrounds of Fannie Bay, minutes from the Darwin city centre, is the Darwin Turf Club, the Territory’s premier horse racing destination. The Club is famed for the running of the Great Northern Darwin Cup, the crescendo of an eight-day dry season racing event, and its surrounding month-long carnival. And with 39 race days per year, the trackside action never stops.
Since the turn of the century the Great Northern Darwin Cup has become the biggest sporting and social event on the Northern Territory’s calendar, with an impressive 20,000 people attending on Great Northern Darwin Cup Day each year. As one of only a few dirt tracks in operation on the provincial circuit, the picturesque racecourse in Fannie Bay is the venue that oversees several illustrious racing names vie for the million-dollar prize money and famed trophies.
Amid the thrill and excitement of the races visitors will find thousands of locals celebrating alongside them, proudly showcasing their home state with their unique style and world-famous hospitality that can only be experienced in the Top End.
There’s plenty to see, do, eat and enjoy at the Darwin Turf Club, and there’s never a dull moment. At the Ted Bailey Grandstand, guests can enjoy a three-course luncheon on premium race days or, if they prefer, a casual bite to eat at the trackside favourite eatery, Ted’s Bar. Additionally, tables of six can be booked on a race day in the Grandstand, which offers air-conditioned comfort with the best views of the course.
Throughout the Great Northern Darwin Cup Carnival, the dining options are tailored to suit a range of tastes and preferences. With à la carte options, three-course luncheons or buffet style alternatives for larger groups, the Club ensures its guests are well and truly looked after.
As is custom for horse racing events, the fashion and style of the carnival is an attraction in itself. Collars and enclosed shoes are required, but due to the climate a jacket is optional. Put on your Sunday best and come out for a day of fun, food, fashion and, of course, racing!
Being so much more than one event, Darwin Racing hosts at least three race meets a month throughout the year. With fantastic feature days full of entertainment, including family days, live music and fashion events, there is bound to be a reason for you to head trackside.
Visit the website or call to find out what’s on this week.
Dick Ward Drive, Fannie Bay 0820
Tel: +618 8923 4222
Images courtesy of Darwin Turf Club