ONE of the stars of the show at Wayville in 2017, leading reinsman Ken Rogers hopes to shine brightly when racing returns to the ‘retro’ venue next week.
Home of South Australian harness racing from 1925 to 1973, Wayville was revived for an award-winning extravaganza on October 27, 2017.
Attracting a sell out crowd reminiscent of the halcyon days of trotting in the state, the ‘step back in time’ program also gained valuable mainstream media coverage for the local industry, and more importantly, was a financial windfall.
Complete with food vans and an electrifying atmosphere, the evening began with Rogers capturing the first race when he partnered the Leah Harvey-trained Chasing A Win.
“Going into the night I was experiencing equal shares of excitement and nerves,” Rogers said. “I knew there was going to a huge crowd which added to both emotions.
“Plus there was the thought of driving on the tight track and the desire to get a winner.
“Once I was out there the nerves gave way to adrenaline when the crown roared as the field was let go for the first race.
“To win that first race and join some of the legends who have won there was pretty special.
“It’s too early to know my drives and draws, but I’m certainly hoping I can land another win this time around.”
With another massive crowd expected on Friday 13th, Rogers has no doubt the atmosphere will once again be “exhilarating”.
Along with general public sales, Harness Racing SA has been thrilled with the corporate bookings such Christmas break-up functions, which is destined result in another large attendance.
“Given how big it was last time we can only hope it is bigger this year,” Rogers said. “Those who came and had a good time will hopefully be back and those who missed out but heard about it will also want to be there.
“That kind of crowd cheering and chanting so close to the track is exhilarating and a tremendous experience.
“I was very fortunate to be a part of it last time and can’t wait to be a part of it again next week.”