VRC hopeful of Melbourne Cup Carnival crowds this year

The Victoria Racing Club is hopeful of having crowds of up to 11,500 people across the four days of the Melbourne Cup Carnival.

The Club advised members of their hopes on Wednesday having lodged plans with the appropriate Victorian State Government authorities for a crowd plan across the Carnival.

VRC chief executive Steve Rosich said the VRC hopes to find out by October 15 whether their hopes for those crowd numbers are achievable.

He said 11,500 spread out over Flemington was well below capacity but a much better scenario than the zero crowd on course for was year’s Carnival.

“We’re very lucky at Flemington to have large expanses both inside and outside that will easily accommodate that crowd in a COVID safe way, but we’ll need to utilise the whole course to do that,” Rosich said.

“The ongoing process is liaising with the State Government departments on that plan.

“We’re hoping to have a view on that plan as early as next week, if not the following week, and our is to communicate to our members and the broader market by the latest October 15 of our plans and take those plans to market.”

Rosich said the vaccination rates across the broader Victorian community would play a key role on whether a crowd, which is at the upper end of the VRC’s hopes, was achievable.

“We respect and understand that opening up a major event that is the Melbourne Cup Carnival to crowds is a privilege and is dependent on what’s capable of being conducted in the broader community as well,” Rosich said.

The VRC is investing in limited infrastructure to accommodate their plans, but Rosich said the Club was being prudent.

“We’re only trying to invest where appropriate, but we need to invest to be ready,” Rosich said.

“There’s a little bit more that will take place over the coming weeks, but we’re trying to minimise that expenditure and commitment for as long as we can.”

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