Auckland Thoroughbred Racing (ATR) has today announced a date change to Barfoot & Thompson Auckland Cup Day 2022 in what is shaping up to be an Auckland Cup Week® like no other.
Originally scheduled to be held at Ellerslie on Saturday 12 March, 2022’s event has been shifted to Sunday 13 March to accommodate New Zealand Bloodstock’s (NZB) National Yearling Sales Series which has now been confirmed for 7-12 March.
ATR chief executive Paul Wilcox says the move, a “once-off”, was about both parties working together for the common good and will result in an Auckland Cup Week® he hopes will be well-supported by both the thoroughbred industry and local community.
“A couple of weeks ago NZB announced they would be shifting their stellar sale to March as a direct result of uncertainty surrounding the ongoing pandemic and border restrictions.
"Since then, our talks with them have determined that opening NZB’s sale on Monday 7 March is a better move for buyers and vendors and that moving Barfoot & Thompson Auckland Cup Day to Sunday 13 March also works for our industry participants who would have otherwise faced a logistical nightmare needing to be at both events at the same time.”
“We hope that having the sale during Auckland Cup Week® 2022 will be mutually beneficial to both parties whereby attendees, many of whom will be attracted to Auckland’s “new” and one-off week-long celebration of the thoroughbred, will support both parties who, like many other businesses, have had to make huge adjustments and sacrifices in recent months.
“While we know a Sunday isn’t traditionally privy to a party, it’s also our hope that after a long few months locked up, Aucklanders will be up for the challenge come 13 March which is also planned to be the last day we race at Ellerslie before we close the track for approximately 18 months to install a StrathAyr track.
In commenting on the moves, NZB’s managing director Andrew Seabrook says that “the rationale behind moving the sale forward by one day is to allow our Australian friends who want to attend ‘Super Saturday’ at Flemington or the Randwick Guineas on Saturday 5 March, extra time to travel to Karaka for the sale on the Monday.”
“It will also give our domestic buyers involved in Vodafone Derby Day at Ellerslie on the 5th of March a chance to complete their final inspections on the Sunday of that same weekend.
“We are very thankful to have received support from Auckland Thoroughbred Racing, New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing and the TAB in making this shift and are looking forward to another quality year of selling at Karaka.”
Wilcox also acknowledges Cup Day sponsor, Barfoot & Thompson’s Peter Thompson, for his understanding and support of this move.
“Peter and the team at Barfoot & Thompson have been long-standing supporters of the Club and racing in Auckland and this decision could not have made if it weren’t for his understanding and continued dedication to our product.”
Anyone who has purchased a ticket to Barfoot & Thompson Auckland Cup Day 2022 is being contacted directly by ATR with regards to ticketing transfers or refunds which will be given in full.
In terms of the day itself, all the original races and activities that had been planned for the Saturday at Ellerslie will be transferred to the Sunday.
The confirmed dates for Auckland Cup Week® 2022 at Ellerslie are:
Saturday 5 March – Vodafone Derby Day ft.
Group I $1,000,000 Vodafone New Zealand Derby
Group III Haunui Farm King’s Plate
Group III McKee Family Sunline Vase
Listed FastTrack Mufhasa Stakes
The Ned Prix de Fashion – the national fashions in the field final
Sunday 13 March – Barfoot & Thompson Auckland Cup Day ft.
Group II $500,000 Barfoot & Thompson Auckland Cup
Group I Sistema Stakes
Group I Bonecrusher New Zealand Stakes
The confirmed dates for NZB’s 2022 National Yearling Sale Series at Karaka are:
Book 1 Sale: Monday 7 - Wednesday 9 March, commencing 11am (NZT) each day
Book 2 Sale: Thursday 10 - Saturday 12 March, commencing 11am (NZT) each day
Please note that the 2022 edition of the Karaka Million held here at Ellerslie will remain at the current date of 22 January.