Thursday trial for Qld midweek meetings

Mark Oberhardt

An experiment that could lead to a major overhaul of midweek racing in Queensland will begin this week.

For the next five weeks the main Queensland midweek meeting will be run at Doomben on a Thursday in a twilight time slot.

Meetings will start at around 2.30pm and finish shortly after 6pm (AEST).

For about three decades Queensland's main midweek meeting has been run Wednesday afternoons but in recent years interest has waned.

The experiment will test whether Thursday twilights will draw bigger crowds and turnover.

The Wednesdays will be Northern Showcase meetings at centres such as Rockhampton, Mackay and Townsville.

A Racing Queensland spokesman said the Thursday trial was important for the entire industry.

"It will give us an idea of how Thursday twilights will be accepted by punters not only on course but also off course," he said.

Doomben is expected to get lights within the next five years and the trial will also give an indication of how twilight-night meetings would be received.