You can bet they had a good time

22:57, Jan 25 2014
Wellington cup
From left, Deanne Rutherford, Nicola Shackleton, Alena Burt, Dean Burt, Ashleigh Burt, Olivia Lacey and Janelle Cheeseman enjoy Wellington Cup Day at Trentham Racecourse.
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It's the first Wellington Cup for Leo Schlicht, 28, from Germany and Sergey Glagolev, 24, from Russia.
Wellington cup
Philippa Kibblewhite, 27, and Helena Lane, 21, both of Wellington.
Wellington cup
Baltic brass band Niko Ne Zna, from left, Kaito Walley, Ben Hunt, Daniel Windsor, Frankie Curac and Simon Grove. Front (L-R): Vlatko Materic and Darryn Sigley.
Wellington cup
Catherine Mooney, 21, of Lower Hutt, and Vi Huynh, 22, of Wellington.
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The horses get going for race 3 at Wellington Cup day at Trentham.
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Jockey Mark Sweeney on race 5 winner Moozoon.
Wellington cup
Jockey Mark Sweeney on Moozoon, number 3, in close competition with Jonathan Riddell on Miss Selby.
Wellington cup day
Race 7 winner A Touch of Ruby, ridden by jockey Craig Grylls.
Wellington cup day
Jockey Craig Grylls rides A Touch of Ruby to victory in race 7.
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Cup day crowds.
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The section winners from fashion in the field.
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Crowds enjoying cup day.
Wellington cup day
Christine Verrion-Clarke and Val Harman, both of Cambridge. Mrs Harman was crowned "Mature Lady of the Carnival".
Wellington cup day
2014 Wellington Cup Day Fashion in the Field winner Charlotte Morr, centre, with judges, from left Heather du Plessis-Allan, Julia Lilly, Natalie Chan and Sopheak Seng.

They came, they gambled, they showed off their finery and left a good account of themselves at Trentham Racecourse this year.

Twelve months after bankrupt property tycoon Terry Serepisos stole the show by getting into a brawl with another race-goer, Wellington Cup Day went quite smoothly.

It went so smoothly, in fact, that the only obvious glitch was on the track rather than off it, when the horse Chintz threw its jockey about 100 metres into race seven and carried on as if no one noticed.

About 14,500 people packed into Trentham to experience the jewel in Wellington Racing Club's crown, as well as the 21 degrees Celsius heat and beaming sunshine.

Race-goer Janelle Cheeseman said she had a flutter on a couple of horses but was under no illusion as to what the main attraction was.

"This is really just one big excuse for people to get hammered. The only reason a lot of these people are here is because there's the opportunity for day-drinking."


That may have been true, but police and ambulance staff were impressed by how the crowd behaved. By 5pm there had been only five arrests and 40 people treated for mostly minor problems such as cuts and bruises.

Race-goer Vi Huynh, 22, was impressed by the up-beat party atmosphere at Trentham this year.

A northerly breeze had kept temperatures quite pleasant but also presented a challenge to those wearing elaborate hats and fascinators, she said.

"Let's just say a lot of hairspray and clips went into mine."

Away from the track, Aucklander Charlotte Moor was thanking her lucky stars she made the effort to travel down after she was crowned the overall fashion in the field winner.

"I'm not a big fan of flying so we got in the car and made the 10-hour hike down here. It's been an amazing day," she said.

"There were some exquisite- looking girls on show here. The competition was very stiff."

Aside from the fillies and the fashion, the crowd also had a range of musical acts, including a Baltic brass band named Niko Ne Zna to keep them entertained.

Band member Vlatko Materic said a few race-goers had a bit of fun dancing to their unique style of music, even though they had not idea what it was.

"It gets a bit like the [Wellington] Sevens here, later on in the day," he said.

Sunday Star Times