SADDLE UP: Polocrosse events return to Warwick calendar
POLOCROSSE: Like most of the sporting world, Warwick polocrosse was hit hard by coronavirus closures earlier this year.
The cancellation of both Barastoc Interstate Series / Shell Cup Club carnival and Australian National Polocrosse titles, to be hosted in Ballarat, ‘crippled’ the Warwick Polocrosse Club, according to president Les Fraser.
“It was a hit definitely — both emotional and financially,” Fraser said.
“It was a big decision to not try and stage (the Barastoc Interstate Series / Shell Cup Club carnival), but it was right in the mix of coronavirus and we couldn’t see any way clear out.”
But the tide is slowly turning as Fraser confirms the Barastoc Interstate Series / Shell Cup Club carnival will return in 2021.
Typically bringing in around 850 competitors across the two events and 700 horses over the three-day weekend, Fraser said a lack of polocrosse events across Australia the past year could signal to a “huge rollout” come April.
“By the next National Championships in 2022, it will basically be four years without the National Championships and this is one of the few other places where state teams can compete against each other at a state level,” he said.
“It is one of the prestige events on the calendar.”
Not only is the return a welcome for the sport, but a needed boost for a “starved” Warwick events economy.
“The flown on effect to the district and community is huge,” Fraser said.
“Regional centres the likes of Warwick and Southern Downs rely on events to keep them going. We are a tourist destination but, compared to major tourist destinations, not as large.
“We rely on attractions and sporting events, whether it be polocrosse, football or golf.”
Subject to restrictions, the Barastoc Interstate Series / Shell Cup Club carnival will return to Warwick from April 16—18.
For more details, head to https://warwickpolox.com.au/barastoc-interstate-series-and-shell-cup-carnival-2021
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