Racing in Gosford has a long and proud history. Planning for the racecourse dated as far back as 1910, when the ‘Gosford Horse Race Group’ acquired enough of the land around, what was then called ‘Red Weed Flat’, to begin work on draining and building up the swampy land.
Malt Mary was the name of the horse that won the very first race at Gosford Race Club on Tuesday, 11 November, 1913, the same day that marked the official opening of Racing in Gosford. Now more than 100 years on, The Entertainment Grounds plays an important and symbolic role in the Central Coast community.
After two years of extensive work, the new race track was ready for its first meeting. Special trains were brought in to transport officials, VIPs and patrons from Sydney and Newcastle. The horses were unloaded on what is now the number 2 platform at Gosford Railway Station and they were led or ridden over to the race course via Faunce Street hill.
Each year the track would host 12 fixtures, with at least five races on the card, each initially for a stake of around A£100. Competing horses, riders and trainers would travel to Gosford by train.
The 1920 Gosford Cup provides a glimpse at how times have changed with the winner, Carben, collecting a purse of 200 sovereigns and a ladies wrist watch valued at 30 guineas, presented by the Directors of the club.
The Gosford Cup is now a listed race taking place in January each year and offers prizemoney of $150,000
Gosford Race Club also has a proud family history, dating back from those humble, hard-working origins. Current Chairman Michael Cusick has a longstanding history with the club via his family.
Michael is the third eldest of five children to father Malcolm who held the position of Chairman of the Club for 35 years. Michael’s late grandfather Alton was an iconic committeeman in the group who instigated the development of the Gosford Race Club back in the 1900s.
This long and wonderful history is set to continue as the Gosford Race Club continues to evolve to embrace the changing times as The Entertainment Grounds, the Central Coast’s premier function and events precinct.