Cup day pilgrimage
By JULIA ILES
IN the Scottish fashion of bag- pipes and kilts, tomorrow's Maclean Cup race meeting will herald the end of the 2006 July Racing Carnival. For 19 years the Maclean community has made the trek from its riverside township to the Grafton racecourse for a day of punting and partying. Tomorrow will mark the sec- ond year the meeting has been staged on Sunday, instead of Saturday. Festivities and draws for the Maclean Cup started
last night at the Maclean Dis- trict Bowling Club, the major sponsor of tomorrow's meeting. Bill McCarron will join around 100 others tomorrow for a leisurely ferry ride to the Grafton racecourse. "I haven't missed one since it started and will on Sunday go up on the ferry, it's one of the best trips and everyone is very friendly," he said. "I've had some good years and some bad, but over the years I have backed a few win- ners, which is always great." Clarence River Jockey Club chief executive Dale Thompson
said traditionally the Maclean Cup was more relaxed than the other major race days. "We get more families and a program is run by the Byron Bay Kidz Club that comes down and organises face painting, cricket and games for children," he said. "There is also a run- ning race on the track that usually has about 50-100 kids in it, which is always a lot of fun." There will be seven races, in- cluding the $25,000 Maclean Dis- trict Bowling Club Maclean Cup. Admission for adults is $10 and pensioners $6.