Sandown Guineas Day will go ahead on Saturday as planned despite part of the Grandstand at Sportingbet Park Sandown being damaged by fire today.
The Fire Brigade arrived in time to stop the spread of the blaze to the main part of the Grandstand after a covered outdoor area of the northern section of the stand got damaged.
The Melbourne Racing Club will host the last metropolitan race day of the Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival with a nine race program featuring the Group 2 $300,000 Sportingbet Sandown Guineas (1600m), the Group 2 WFA $350,000 Deadly Design Zipping Classic (2400m) and the Listed $150,000 Sportingbet Sandown Cup (3200m).
Jake Norton, head of Communications and Racing, released a statement from the club saying that the meeting will go ahead as scheduled after the damage from the fire was well away from any horse area and will be cordoned off from the public on raceday.
“The fire at Sandown Racecourse in Springvale started in a covered outdoor area at the northern end of the Grandstand. The fire services were on hand immediately and gained control of the blaze. Everybody was evacuated safely and the safety officers have assessed the damage to the building ahead of racing this Saturday,” the statement read.
“Due to the location of the fire which was at the opposite end to any horse movement areas the race meeting on Saturday will go ahead unaffected.”
“The relevant authorities are investigating the cause. There will be a small area cornered off at the weekend, work to repair Sandown Racecourse for the remaining racedays will start immediately.”
The Darren Weir trained Stratum Star has been installed the $2.80 favourite for the Sandown Guineas with Ladbrokes.com.au ahead of Paul Messara’s three year old Rekindled Power at $3.80 and the unbeaten Lord Aspen at $4.80.
The Zipping Classic is also a tight betting affair with four of the nine runners under double figure.
Prince Of Penzance from the Darren Weir stable is the early favourite at $3.50 ahead of Spillway at $4, 2012 Melbourne Cup winner Green Moon at $5 and French stayer Au Revoir at $5.50.