Next Wednesday (August 27th) will see the launch of the book "Against All Odds" which is an historical account of the life and times of the Manawatu Harness Racing Club.
The brainchild of Duncan and Denise Neilson, the book chronicles the establishment of the club in June 1893 and takes you through all its trials and tribulations through to 2014.
Having read the book , we can honestly say it is one of those books that once you have picked it up it is hard to put down.
It gives you an insight into a different world that most of the readers will have little idea of and even less understanding of.
The club was in existence for nearly seventy years before it had its own track and facilities at its present site and the problems associated with racing prior to that at Awapuni and Ashhurst are well covered.
Champions of today may have never raced at Manawatu Raceway but between 1940 and 1990 the club hosted most of the stars of the time from Johnny Globe through to Cardigan Bay to Blossom Lady.
The constant battle to stay afloat in the early days through to a crowd of 6500 people on the establishment of night trotting in November 1962 is well covered and give readers an insight into how lucky we are to have had such committed people involved in the club's development.
What also becomes apparent is how much things have changed within the trotting industry especially in the last 30 years.
Unfortunately Duncan Neilson passed away in April 2014 and didn't get to see this labour of love come to fruition but Denise should be very proud of the book she and Duncan have produced.
Copies can be purchased from the M.H.R.C. at