Westlawn Finance chairperson Mike Dougherty (centre) with Mr and Mrs Hat – alias Jacob Andrews and Danielle Cunningham – in preparation for Westlawn Prelude Day.
Westlawn Finance chairperson Mike Dougherty (centre) with Mr and Mrs Hat – alias Jacob Andrews and Danielle Cunningham – in preparation for Westlawn Prelude Day. Adam Hourigan

Rearing to go to carnival prelude

THEY'RE off and racing.

The highly anticipated XXXX Gold July Racing Carnival gallops into action today with Westlawn Finance Prelude Day at Grafton opening the five-meeting festival of racing.

Months of planning, dreams and aspirations go on the line for the best equine and human talent, with fun, excitement, drama, fashion and entertainment aplenty for families and all racegoers.

Westlawn Finance chairman Mike Dougherty and “Mr and Mrs Hat” frocked up a day early yesterday as a precursor to the opening day's activities.

Unfortunately for affable Mr Dougherty, his stayer Cee Jay Clang suffered a tendon injury last week, thwarting plans to land the Grafton Cup Prelude.

“As the vet said, he's been back from the dead three or four times already, one more time shouldn't matter,” Mr Dougherty said philosophically. “I'm not bruised black and blue from another hiding (setback), that's racing.

“I'll be dressing in theme – black and gold – looking forward to what we all hope is a great day for everyone.”



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