Australia is known for its immense interest in horse racing and is home to nearly 400 racecourses in total. These racecourses exist all over the country, and are classed as either Metropolitan, Provincial or Country racetracks. Metropolitan racecourses are usually home to the big Group races and are often better quality than other racecourses. Provincial racecourses are usually located just outside major cities and can be home to Provincial Cup races that often have Group or Listed status. Country races, apart from certain Country Cup meets, are not usually covered by off course bookmakers or the TAB.
Racetracks in Victoria, South Australia, Tasmania and Western Australia are designed to be raced on in an anti-clockwise direction, while Queensland and New South Wales racecourses are clockwise.
The largest of Australia’s racetracks is Flemington Racecourse in Melbourne, Victoria. Flemington is home to the famous Melbourne Cup in November and the accompanying Melbourne Cup Carnival. Flemington is known for its ‘straight six’, which is its unique 1,200 metre or six furlong straight that allows sprint races to be run in a straight line. Flemington is also home to the Group 1 Newmarket Handicap, Group 1 Victoria Derby and the VRC Crown Oaks.