In response to further submissions from stakeholder groups, Racing and Wagering Western Australia advises that the Western Australian Oaks [G3], to be run at Ascot on 1 April 2017, will revert to the traditional distance of 2400m.

To ensure continuity of the lead‐up programme into the Oaks, the Ascot 1000 Guineas [LR] and Natasha Stakes [LR] will also return to their previous distances of 1800m and 2200m respectively.

In addition to the above, the timing of the lead‐up races to the WATC Derby [G2] for colts and geldings will again provide a two‐week interval between the Melvista Stakes [LR] and Derby.

The WA Oaks and WATC Derby will remain scheduled seven days apart.

RWWA Manager Thoroughbred Racing said “it is apparent the extent of the initial consultation process on this issue did not meet the expectations of our stakeholders and the appropriate outcome is to return the WA Oaks to 2400m in 2017.”

“A more formal consultation process around race programming for all sectors of the industry is currently being established and will be communicated to industry within the next week.”

Trainers are advised that the above race programme amendments are not reflected in the January edition of Racing Ahead, however are printed overleaf and available on our website at


David Hunter
Manager Thoroughbred Racing