OVER 1000 punters arrived track-side at Ferguson Park this afternoon for the Cox Plate Day races.

The main hall and marquees were packed as the crowd gathered to watch the six local horse races and take a punt on the big meeting at Moonee Valley.

Bookmaker Richard 'Nugget' Turnbull said betting early in the day was initially "light on but starting to build".

"I haven't given up on a big bet yet," he said.

"But they always get into it here."

A bookmaker for six years Mr Turnbull said Cox Plate favourite Winx was 'a good thing'.

"But there's a lot of on pace bias there today," he said.

"The English raider Benbatl is the next in the market and could set a cracking pace to get away from her.

"That horse is a bit better runner than any she's faced in the last three years."

In spite of there being no official fashion parade at the meeting there was no shortage of Gladstone ladies turning out in style for the occasion.