PHOTOS: Rain stays away long enough for successful derby
ALTHOUGH it was overcast, cold, and the light showers never really shifted, Gayndah Jockey Club conquered the weather to ensure the 150th Queensland Derby would not need to be held over for another year.
The drizzle started early, but by the conclusion of the six local races, less than 4mm had fallen.
"A lot of work went into the track," Gayndah Jockey Club president Jason Waldock said.
"It held up really well."
Mr Waldock said it was a "big thing for the club" to finally host the derby after weather forced the races to be cancelled last year.
He noted the 1900m race was the longest it had been in 15 years, a big vote of confidence in the track.
Mr Waldock was grateful to all the sponsors, the crowd for bracing the "miserable" weather, and the "great" committee he had behind him.
He ended the day neither in the red nor the black.
"I would like to (have a punt), but I haven't had the chance," Mr Waldock said.
Former Gayndah Shire mayor Bill Mellor, who manned the results board in the betting ring all day, said he was "a bit emotional" talking to some of the old hands around the track about derby's legacy.
He said he enjoyed his elevated perch up until late in the day.
"Once you get to races eight and nine, you have to bend your knees (to write on the results board), it's no good for an old fella like me," he said.
Member for Flynn Ken O'Dowd and State Member for Callide Colin Boyce were both in attendance on the day.
Mr Boyce said country races like Gayndah's were "terrific social events ... all the locals turn up."
Mr Boyce was involved in one of the highlights of the day, inadvertently walking into the Fashions on the Field ring and thus entering himself under the rules of the day.
He was unlucky not to place.