Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival Dates 2017: What You Need to Know

Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival Dates 2017: What You Need to Know | Track Mode Australia

The Sydney autumn racing carnival is a great opportunity for newbies to get acquainted with the Sport of Kings, with its less-frenetic atmosphere and fewer big races overall.

That doesn’t mean, however, that the autumn races are any less important. In fact, the richest weight-for-age race in the country is the $4 million Group 1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes. On the other hand, the Golden Slipper Stakes offers the biggest prize money in the world for 2-year-olds, with a purse worth $3.5 million.

Ready to roll? Here’s your guide to the most important races of the Sydney autumn racing carnival.

Longines Golden Slipper Day


What: A Group 1 race, the Golden Slipper Stakes is one of the biggest and most prestigious races in Australia. It is also the richest race in the world for 2-year-olds, with a stupendous $3.5 million in prize money and the Golden Slipper trophy. The trophy isn’t just a symbol, either: Last year’s was worth $23,000, plated with 24-carat gold, studded with 74 diamonds, and mounted on top-notch Italian marble. This race is run over a distance of 1,200 metres under set weight conditions.

The George Ryder Stakes is also run on this day, over 1,500 metres in weight-for-age conditions, and with a prize of $1 million.

When: Saturday 18 March 2017

Where: Australian Turf Club, Rosehill Gardens

Legends Day

What: This is day two of the Longines Golden Slipper Festival, a day “honours the achievements of those excelling in their field both on and off the track.” The headline race of the day is the BMW Stakes, a weight-for-age race run over 2,400 metres and with prize money worth $1.5 million.

When: Saturday 25 March 2017

Where: Australian Turf Club, Rosehill Gardens

The Championships, Day 1

What: The grand finale of the Sydney autumn racing festival is held over two Saturdays, and this is day 1. Headlining the day is the Doncaster Handicap, run over 1,600 metres and with a cash prize worth $3 million. Also contested on this day is the TJ Smith Stakes with $2.5 million in prizes, and the AJC Australian Derby and AJC Sires Produce Stakes, worth over $2 million and $1 million, respectively.

When: Saturday 01 April 2017

Where: Australian Turf Club, Royal Randwick

The Championships, Day 2 a.k.a. Longines Queen Elizabeth Stakes Day

What: Day 2 of the grand finale features as its main event the $4 million Longines Queen Elizabeth Stakes, the world’s richest 2,000 metre turf race. Also run on this day are the Sydney Cup worth $2 million, and the Queen of the Turf Stakes and AJC Australian Oaks, worth $1 million each.

Track Mode is a horse racing and fashion site founded and curated by Nina O’Brien. Subscribe to our newsletter to get exclusive race day fashion edits straight to your inbox! You can also find us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Google+.

Check out Your Autumn Racing Fashion 2017 Lookbook, and What’s On: Autumn Fashion and Beauty Trends You Need to Know About. You’ll find racing fashion inspiration to get you through the autumn racing carnival in style.