Ronnie Welby has been going to the Whanganui races for 40 years but says last Saturday he and his wife were treated like "third-class citizens".

"Just about every grandstand I went to I was turned away, they'd say 'are you a member?'," he said.

"We eventually found the public stand, which was the worst set up I've ever seen in my life.

"When we took our bets and wanted to go out the front we weren't allowed outside.


"We had to walk down to get outside in the torrential rain, when we got there there was no where for the public to sit. It was just horrible.

"We had a guts full, we watched one race and left."

Operations Manager Bret Field says they are putting in recommendations given to them by the NZ Racing Board.

"We're making some changes to improve the experience of our trainers, owners and our regular members."

He says the public in Whanganui have been a bit spoiled in the past.

"Any other race course in New Zealand the public would have to walk to see the races."

The club has seen 3600 visitors at this years Christmas Races up from 2200 last year.

"We're going through some growing pains.

"We've been letting people know we're making some changes, if he was a regular he would know that."