Einasleigh is the name of a district and a small town in the shire of Etheridge, in the Australian state of Queensland. The small rural town was founded in the 1860s and began to prosper around 1900, when the demand for copper increased and was answered in part by what was found at Einasleigh. Today several traditions have become part of the small town’s friendly charm, and the annual Rodeo and Races are the jewels in the crown.
A Fully Festive Weekend
The Einasleigh Cup is the feature event on a card of 5 races, and while these are the main attraction for many they are by no means all that is going on. The Cup and the other sprints of the day are picnic races, meaning they are run by amateur Thoroughbreds and non-professional or retired jockeys. These events always focus on the social aspect of the races as much as on the actual sprints and punting, if not more, so it makes sense that there is so much going on in Einasleigh over the same weekend.
The Rodeo and Races take place over the Easter weekend, and besides the sprints and the ACBRA Einasleigh Rodeo, there is always plenty of action kicking off on the Thursday before the long weekend begins. This includes Sports Clinics for children; a Fishing Competition (which is fitting given the port town’s close connection to rivers); an Easter Egg hunt complete with parade and prizes; live entertainment all the way through and a talent quest and 3-course meal on the Friday night!
Einasleigh Cup Race Day
The Saturday of the weekend is all about the horse racing events, and other traditional activities that are linked to them. In addition to the rewards that the 5 races of varying lengths and classes have to offer, trophies for Most Successful Trainer and Most Successful Jockey are also given away. The Einasleigh Cup itself is an Open Handicap event run over 1,620 metres for a total prize purse of 12,000 Australian Dollars.
The betting is just as in-depth and potentially lucrative as in professional events, and Crown oaks day betting punters till need to look at all the same things – the recent performance history of the horse and the rider; the track and weather conditions; reliable tips and anything else they can get their hands on. Tickets for the Calcutta go on sale on Easter Friday night, and the draw takes place on Saturday morning. The iconic Fashions on the Field event is another highlight of the day, and enthusiasts of all ages can don their finest threads in the hope of winning fantastic prizes. All-day bar and catering services should keep spectators refreshed, and live entertainment should help them to party the night away.
Even More Action
The ABCRA Einasleigh Rodeo takes place on Sunday and includes Poddy and Bronc Riding; Bull Riding, Roping, Barrel Racing and much more. Free children’s entertainment and world-class bar facilities will make the event more enjoyable.
To finish the Einasleigh Cup weekend off on a really high note, visitors can usually enjoy breakfast in the Rodeo Catering area as well, followed by a last bit of fun with the Copperfield Annual Duck Derby. Everyone who has managed to purchase a duck over the weekend sets their contender off along the Copperfield River to see who wins. It’s an enjoyable final flourish to an action-packed weekend.