The event touted 'The Melbourne Cup of Camel Races' is tipped to draw a record crowd this weekend as cameleers and tourists descend on the remote outback Queensland town of Boulia.
Known as the longest and most prestigious camel race in Australia, professional teams from across Australia enter with hopes of winning the 1500m Quality Electrical Qld Boulia Camel Cup.
Just a few months after flood waters brought a welcome revitalisation to the dusty Boulia landscape, the small town of just 300 people is now bracing for a flood of a few thousand travellers.
Each year, caravans, RVs and campers travel to the edge of the Simpson Desert to experience what has become a 'bucket-list' event.
Organisers report last year's attendance was a peak not seen for years, with more travellers planning their outback driving adventure around events such as Birdsville's Big Red Bash and its own Boulia Camel Races.
"Every year more people are factoring our Boulia Camel Races into their outback travel plans and ticking us off their bucket-list," event organiser Rebecka Britton said.
"We've seen our crowds increasing 19 per cent year-on-year the last couple of years and it's great to see this year will be even bigger because it's a welcome boom for our local businesses.
"Camel racing week is definitely our peak tourist season in Boulia."
The 2018 races saw a spectacular anomaly for New South Wales jockey Chontelle Jannese, who won eight out of eight races she jockeyed, including big 1500 Cup Final, but she was quick to point out that the Cup Final glory belongs with the winning camel 'Uncle Bob' and his trainer Rod Sansom.
The duo play a central role within in the Oakfield Ranch Camel Racing Team, based in Anna Bay near Newcastle where they operate beach camel ride tours.
While the tours may be the business' bread and butter, their love and excitement is trading the beach sand for outback sand when they follow the Outback Queensland Camel Racing Circuit, from Bedourie to Boulia, finishing in Winton each winter.
Jockey, Chontelle resigned from her job as a case manager in disabilities and mental health last year, so that she could follow the outback camel racing circuit.
With a background in horse-riding, and now six years in to racing camels, Chontelle is part of a changing trend that has seen female jockeys, which were once a rarity, now increasing and often dominating the wins on the racing circuit.
Surrounding the racing action in Boulia is a full program of live music, novelty races, helicopter rides and new in 2019, camp oven cooking demonstrations with Ranger Nick.
This year the Boulia Camel Races dates fall immediately after the popular Birdsville Big Red Bash, kicking off on July 19.
Tickets can be purchased here.
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