WHILE funding for fencing replacement at the Bathurst Showground will go a long way towards bringing long track racing back to the venue there's still a long road ahead in order to make that happen.
The replacement of the exterior fencing is part of a $3 million upgrade, funded by the NSW Government, which will also help restore the historic pavilions at the site.
With harness trainers based at the Showground set to move out in the future, as the Bathurst Paceway begins the construction of their training facility, it gives the Panorama Motorcycle Club an opportunity to get racing up and going at the venue again.
Panorama Motorcycle Club president Bruce Morgan said the construction of the fence gets one of two major hurdles out of the way, but the formation of a committee is still needed to making racing a reality.
"The last time we ran the event the track inspector said he wouldn't be able to pass it the next year because of the quality of the fence. It was only just holding together," he said.
"We spoke to the Showground trust about that so they've gone ahead and done all that, which is great.
"The existing fence was reasonably safe the last time we used it but that problem, I believe, has gone away now."
That previous event was the 2017 Australian Long Track Masters, a successful weekend of racing which brought more than 150 competitors to Bathurst.
But a lot of work had gone into making that happen, including the removal of the blue metal dust used by the Bathurst Harness Racing Club, and its subsequent replacement after the event.
When horses make the shift to their new training facility that will no longer be a concern.
However, a committee still needs to be formed to try and get long track off the ground, and Morgan said that could still be some time away.
"This event we used to hold, we ran it for about 15 years, and it takes 12 months to organise. It was the same people organising it each year and it was very finely tuned. We haven't had it for about three years now and if we need to get a new committee together," he said.
"One person can't run that event. You need that committee together, and the previous one we had was fantastic. They worked really hard and we had our own jobs to do, but over the three years those guys have found other interests.
"When we did the track before we had to take around 300 tonnes of blue metal off the surface then put it back for the trotters, but that's something that won't have to be done anymore after they move out to the new facility."
Morgan said he'd love to see another big event make its way to the Showground after a tough run in 2020.
"The Showground trust lost the show this year and possibly next year, and we couldn't run our event because of the fence and now we've got a problem with getting the committee together so we'd love to get it back," hes said.
"I've been pushing to make it happen. The Showground is probably the best long track facility in Australia."