On behalf of the Andrews Labor Government, welcome to Victoria – the sporting and events capital of Australia and proud host of the 139th edition of the Stawell Gift.
First run in 1878, the Stawell Gift is Australia’s oldest professional footrace and part of the sporting folklore of this state. After a necessary break last year, Easter 2021 at Stawell is on track to be one of the best ever.
The Government has committed $1.22 million across four years to ensure the Gift continues to provide a substantial economic benefit and jobs in central Victoria.
In providing equal prize money for the men’s and women’s Gifts and with a new board of management headed by Stephanie Spence, the carnival is helping to level the playing field.
There is a new major sponsor in Powercor and Channel Seven will broadcast a stellar line-up of athletes with 2019 Gift winners Dhruv Rodrigues Chico and Lexi Loizou among the nominations.
When you’re not at Central Park this long weekend, I encourage you to explore the many natural wonders and charming towns of the Northern Grampians region. There is something for everyone here.
Special thanks to the board members of Stawell Gift Event Management, the Stawell Athletic Club, the Northern Grampians Shire Council and the Victorian Athletic League for their tireless efforts to deliver this wonderful carnival.
I wish all competitors the very best of luck over the next three days as we celebrate the return of an iconic Victorian event.
The Hon Martin Pakula MP
Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events