Auckland Cup Week turns five

Wednesday 3 March 2010, 12:53PM

By Cathy Campbell Communications



On Saturday 6 March, thousands of New Zealanders from around the country will converge on Ellerslie Racecourse to celebrate first day of New Zealand’s richest sporting event, Auckland Cup Week.

Featuring three action packed racedays, two of New Zealand’s richest races, three fashion competitions, a music festival, a parade and the finest thoroughbred racing talent in the country, Auckland Cup Week is Auckland’s biggest party.

With tickets selling fast to the fifth Auckland Cup Week and a big crowd expected across all three race days, Auckland Racing Club CEO Chris Weaver is hoping for the biggest Auckland Cup Week yet.

“The Auckland Racing Club team is proud with the changes we’ve made to the summer racing calendar at Ellerslie over the past five years and Auckland Cup Week has always been seen as the grand finale.

“When we launched Auckland Cup Week, we had a vision to create Auckland’s ultimate entertainment experience. We’ve refined that experience and now with three racedays showcasing some of the finest thoroughbred talent in Australasia, fashion, glamour, live music and fun for everyone, we’re truly offering that ultimate experience,” said Weaver.Â

The excitement starts this Saturday with Telecom Derby Day, featuring the country’s richest race and the richest Derby in the Southern Hemisphere the $2.2 million Telecom New Zealand Derby. This race will see a field of New Zealand’s top three-year-old’s racing for $15,000 per second!

In Telecom’s second year as sponsor of Derby Day it announced an exciting new event on Auckland’s social calendar: the Telecom Carnival. Held in the Ellerslie infield, the carnival will feature top Kiwi band The Black Seeds, along with DJs Tim Phin and People of Paris keeping the infield crowd entertained.

Telecom Derby Day also features Mercedes Prix de Fashion, the national Fashions in the Field final with the crème de la crème of raceday fashion on show. The $100,000 first prize package includes a Mercedes-Benz CLC 200K Coupe as well as a number of other luxury prizes. Â

Auckland Cup Week continues on Sunday 7 March with the Parade of Champions down Broadway Newmarket at midday in association with Auckland City and the Newmarket Business Association. Featuring winners of past and present, fashion and entertainment, the Parade of Champions is a showcase of the colour of Auckland Cup Week.

The action continues at Ellerslie on Wednesday 10 March with Stella Artois Auckland Cup Day. Featuring Auckland’s own iconic race, the $1 million Stella Artois Auckland Cup, it’s the perfect excuse for a half-day off!

The Stella Artois Auckland Cup is a gruelling handicap run over 3200m with a history dating back to 1874. The perpetual trophy is a magnificent and priceless silver cup that Queen Victoria commissioned her Crown Jeweller to make in 1889, which adds to the heritage and prestige of the great race.

The fashion competition of the day is Stella Artois Cup Couture, where judges will looking for the best-dressed duo oncourse, in an attempt to find the couple who best represent the glamour and prestige of New Zealand's iconic race.

Auckland Cup Week at Ellerslie culminates on Saturday 13 March with SKYCITY Diamond Day, it’s ladies’ day and the perfect way to celebrate the end of the week with a glamorous twist!

Two Group I races provide the action on the track, the Group I $200,000 SKYCITY New Zealand Stakes and Group I $200,000 Diamond Stakes showcasing the country’s best two-year-olds.. Â

The fashion stakes are also hot with the PANDORA Diamond Darling offering an exciting end to the week. The 14 'best-dressed' ladies on course will each draw a horse in the Group I Diamond Stakes and the finalist whose horse comes in will take home a glittering prize package from PANDORA, SKYCITY and Nicolas Feuillatte valued at $10,000!

For tickets and hospitality options visit or for more information on the Telecom Carnival