Beanies for Brain Cancer month gets $41,000 head start at Mark Hughes Foundation Race Day

Beanies for Brain Cancer awareness month was kicked off in style at the Mark Hughes Foundation Race Day held at Newcastle Racecourse on Saturday, 1st of June 2024.

Proudly supported by The Burwood Inn, the event raised more than $41,000 to assist with continued research and awareness of brain cancer and provide support to impacted individuals and their families.

The Burwood Inn Licensee, Tony Dart, was buoyed by the results of the event and expressed his gratitude to all who attended.

“The total raised was in the vicinity of $41,000 and we could not have done it without the amazing support of our sponsors and guests,” Mr Dart said.

“We had a room full of generous guests, all there in the spirit of supporting the Mark Hughes Foundation, who got to enjoy the amazing hospitality of the Newcastle Jockey Club who never fail to deliver a great event.”

Newcastle Racecourse CEO, Duane Dowell, was also thrilled by the fundraising efforts, particularly given the inclement weather later in the day.

“The event goes to show what Newcastle Racecourse as a venue can deliver to help assist our local community,” said Duane Dowell.

“Our team were proud to host the Mark Hughes Foundation, supported by The Burwood Inn, and help them kick off Beanie’s for Brain Cancer month. It is an honour for Newcastle Racecourse to be involved in assisting our sponsors and their charity partners to raise these much-needed funds.”

The Mark Hughes Foundation was established by former NRL Player, Mark Hughes and his wife Kirralee in 2014, after he himself received a brain cancer diagnosis in 2013.

This year marked the third year running of the Mark Hughes Foundation Race Day at Newcastle Racecourse and was the official launch day of the Beanies for Brain Cancer season.

Speaking on the race day, Mark Hughes also expressed his appreciation for the funds raised throughout the day.

“The funds go directly into brain cancer research and to patient support, so it’s been an amazing day,” said Mark Hughes.

“Thank you to everyone the Newcastle Jockey Club. They always get behind my charity and behind the community, so I really appreciate the support they give us,” he said.

About The Mark Hughes Foundation

The Mark Hughes Foundation (MHF) is a non-profit, Heath Promotion Charity that Mark Hughes and his wife Kirralee began in 2014, after Mark himself was diagnosed with brain cancer.

They began the foundation when they realised how underfunded brain cancer was in Australia compared with other cancers. The lack of funding meant little research into treatments or cures for brain cancer had taken place, and as a result, not much had changed in brain cancer mortality rates over the past thirty years.

Since their first simple Beanie’s for Brain Cancer fundraiser in 2014 where a few hundred beanies were sold, the charity has since joined forces with the National Rugby League to create an annual Beanie for Brain Cancer Round. The Beanie campaign is now a nationally recognised fundraiser which has seen almost 1 million beanies sold.

About The Burwood Inn

The Burwood Inn is a 150-year-old corner pub in beachside Merewether with Licensee Tony Dart at the helm with Sandra and the Burwood team.

Tony and the team continue to sponsor and support the Mark Hughes Foundation Race Day and the local community despite the impact a fire had to their venue in June 2023.

The pub is currently undergoing a restoration with plans to reopen in September 2024.

– 06.06.2024 –

For further details, or to arrange an interview please contact CEO Duane Dowell


M: 0423 925 588

Click here for a copy of the full media release.