DUNKELD Cup day oozed a fun atmosphere on Saturday with an estimated 7000 to 8000 people through the gate, despite the mostly mild weather.
There were plenty of colourful costumes including a racing car driver, Fred Flintstone, hippies, Crayola Crayons, a three legged man and plenty of ill fitting suits in gaudy colours from the Op Shop.
A minute’s silence was held before the eight-event card began, to remember the six people who lost their lives in a car accident on the way to last year’s Dunkeld Races.
The welfare of racegoers was well catered for with the ‘Uber Bus’ on hand to provide sunscreen and water and the Red Frogs organisation distributing donuts and lollies.
There’s nothing that can be done about bad luck, as one sober racegoer’s day ended just seconds after he arrived when he broke his ankle getting off the bus.
Those that decided to chance a bet had a good start to the day with crowd favourite ‘Tricky Glen’ winning the first race.
There was substantially less cheering at the finish line during the next race as a long odds horse came through and the bookmakers clawed back their losses.
Bookmaker Damian Gleeson said he was about even for the day after only one heavily tipped horse failed to place in the main race.
New Zealand horse ‘Pennon’ won the day’s main race and $25,000 in prize money.
The Fashions of the Field competition was hotly contested, especially in the Women’s section which required a gruelling five heats to narrow down the finalists.
Joanne Price, from Hamilton, was the ultimate winner of the women’s section and Cavendish’s Lauren Hyland took third place.
Inspector Don Downes said he was pleased with the behaviour of the crowd during the official event, with officers out in force along with numerous security personnel.
A number of tickets were handed out for offensive behaviour, but no serious incidents were reported during the day.
Hamilton bus operator, Des Trotter, also congratulated the crowd on its behaviour and thanked the more than 1000 people who took advantage of the shuttle service to Dunkeld, for the respect they showed for both the buses and the Trotters’ staff.