March 7, 2023

On the back of the exciting Ladbrokes Territory Treble announcement last month, the Darwin Turf Club is pleased to announce a new $50,000 bonus to be called the Darwin Double, for any 3 year – old who is successful in winning both the Darwin Guineas and the Ladbrokes NT Derby in the same year.

In its previous format the treble had become an increasingly ambitious target set for 3YO’s with the bonus only ever being achieved twice over the last 40 years with the most recent winner being Ventilago in 1996, some 27 years ago.

But for the very first time, the Darwin Double which incorporates any horse successful in winning the $75,000 Darwin Guineas (Saturday 8th of July) and the $135,000 Ladbrokes NT Derby (Saturday the 22nd of July), will now go on to receive a $50,000 bonus and presents connections with a very real opportunity of celebrating an added windfall.

Darwin Turf Club chairman Richard O’Sullivan says that whilst the new concept still represents a significant challenge for any 3YO, it opens up an opportunity for entrants to race for the bonus in their own age category and in turn, making the Darwin Double a very real chance of being realised in 2023.

“Once again we have reviewed the concept and continually evaluate and examine ways in which these bonuses become more achievable to which will provide further opportunities for owners and trainers by way of incorporating attractive potential returns upon their significant investments to the industry”, O’Sullivan said

“This new concept still provides a challenge, but based on past data, is far more achievable and has the prospect of adding another exciting bonus scheme to the Darwin Cup Carnival.”

Since 1981, the Guineas/Derby double has been won some 14 times and includes winners in more recent years such as Host of the Party (2013) Finke (2016) and Poets Landing (2019)

In future years the Darwin Turf Club will look to potentially incorporate a further bonus scheme to incentivise 3YO racing for those horses who have competed in the Darwin Double and stay on to be a part of top end racing. 

“This is a concept consistent with our strategy of enabling incentives to drive the investment into 3YO’s coming to Darwin and extend their careers here in the Territory, thereby strengthening our racing stocks during the wet season and beyond.” O’Sullivan added.

The Darwin Cup Carnival kicks off on Saturday July 8th and culminates in the running of the Great Northern Darwin Cup Carnival on Monday August 7.