Travel restrictions in New South Wales and Victoria caused by the COVID-19 pandemic have seen management at the Darwin Turf Club make the decision to relocate this year’s Sportsbet Darwin Turf Club Gala Ball back to the Darwin Turf Club.

Darwin Turf Club chief executive Brad Morgan said unprecedented early numbers were now seeing a significant offset due to travel restrictions and the uncertainty created by recent outbreaks in southern states.

“Whilst it may be disappointing that crowds of up to 2000 people would not be attending, by holding the event at the Darwin Turf Club lawns, we remain confident of providing for a boutique experience for attendees that was much enjoyed by locals last year when the entire country was under restricted movements with border closures,” he said.

 “Our thoughts are with everyone in New South Wales and Victoria who were looking forward to attending this bucket-list event and experiencing our five-star entertainment and hospitality.”

Moving the ball will mean creating a more intimate space and will still feature quality entertainment, table service of a four-course meal, and a beverage package including spirits.

“As we did in 2020, we will still deliver a five-star night under the stars during Darwin’s beautiful dry season,” Mr Morgan said.

Ticket sales for the Great Northern Darwin Cup Carnival continue to be strong, and can be purchased through the website.