An Introduction From The CEO
I wish everyone involved in the industry a happy and safe Easter. On Easter Sunday, the Warragul Club hosts the final Cup for the Country Cup Season. The race will determine whether Arber or Savesometimetodream is the Choice Hotels Country Cups Champion.
Once again congratulations go out to Barry Bottams, Mark Kemp and the Mildura Club for another successful Carnival.
Initial figures I have received indicate that on course wagering through the tote were similar to last year - at approximately $250,000 over the three nights ($140,000 on Final night).
On course bookmakers also held strongly, so overall the numbers are pleasing given that the increase in betting by punters on mobile devices while on course is not included in the above numbers.
became the first ever female to drive the winner of the Pacing Cup when Im Blue Double Dee saluted at $29 from favourite Flaming Flutter.
Amazingly and drove seven winners on Final night between them. Shayne also drove four winners on heat night for a total of eight for the Carnival.
I also pay tribute to the Sunraysia Daily for its outstanding coverage during the Carnival. HRV appreciates the efforts of Sports Chief Matt Taylor and Darren Davis.
Great Southern Star (GSS)
I would like to say thank you to several people now the dust has settled on the GSS: Pryde's Easifeed has been an excellent sponsor for the two years of the event and I pass on my appreciation to Peter Pryde, David Owen and Grant Bole for their support;
The Women's Cancer Foundation - in particular Board Member Duncan McPherson OAM. Duncan's energy has assisted in the growth of the GSS and the connection with the Ovarian Cancer Institute has lifted the profile of the event;
The female drivers who enthusiastically wore the teal pants through the month of March to raise awareness of Ovarian Cancer;
All those who attended the night and contributed $85,000 toward the Women's Cancer Foundation;
Congratulations to connections of Keystone Del who took home the lion's share of the $400,000 on offer for the GSS. Finally, for a two minute look at the highlights of the big night, click here. Royal Children's Hospital (RCH) Appeal
i) Race for the Appeal
Thanks go to HRV staff member Jess Tubbs who last Friday night pulled together a highly successful Sulky Race as a fundraiser for the RCH.
Young Nathan Fino has Down Syndrome requiring regular treatment at the hospital and the Fino family is raising funds for the RCH Appeal.
At Melton, Victoria's leading drivers sprinted up the home straight carting the sulky behind carrying a young child, including Nathan. It was a great thrill for the youngsters who ignored the rain and had a ball.
The winning combination was "driven" by Katie Alford. Ironically Katie's Dad Chris was tailed off, displaying a distinct lack of speed!
Click here to watch the race.
ii) Drivers at Appeal
I would also like to thank industry leaders , and who will be taking part in the RCH Good Friday Appeal on Channel 7. They will be answering phones and be interviewed at approximately 2.15pm.
I appreciate the effort these three will make to represent our sport on this important day.
A new concept in harness racing will be launched next month with the introduction of 'Hot Shots'.
Hot Shots is a collaborative initiative between HRV, Sky Racing, Harness Racing Australia, Harness Racing NSW, Racing QLD and Racing and Wagering WA.
Over eight Tuesday nights commencing on May 6, harness racing will take centre stage on Sky Racing with a dedicated exclusive coverage of speed racing from four States over a two hour period between 5pm and 7pm.
Races will be over approximately 1000 metres featuring distinctive colours, eight horse fields with a Hot Shot race every few minutes on Sky Racing 2.
A detailed launch of Hot Shots will take place shortly. Hot Shots has its own twitter feed @HotShotsRacing. Summer Carnival
In releasing the race dates for the 2014/15 season, HRV has determined that it will conduct its major Summer Carnival in late January/early February, to include the SEW-Eurodrive Victoria Cup and the Del Re National Food Group Hunter Cup in successive weeks.
The Carnival will also include the time honoured Victoria Derby. Following the Victorian Carnival (not yet branded) will be the Inter Dominion Heats in mid-February before moving to Sydney for the Inter Dominion Final in early March.
HRV thanks the Ballarat Club, which was consulted along the way, for agreeing to shift its Cup to mid-December. HRV is now able to promote a major regional carnival of the Group 1 Cranbourne and Ballarat Cups in successive weeks.
is closing in on being the third driver to reach 5,000 winners. At Mildura on March 30, he brought up win number 4,500 behind Hayabusa Flyer;
drove his 500th winner at Melton last Friday behind Weallwantano;
Haydon Gray drove his 100th winner on April 3 at Maryborough behind Courageous Emm.
HRV Receptionist Jenny Mugavin completed 10 years' service in March.
Did You Know?
HRV will be racing at Tabcorp Park on the night of Anzac Day. It is a big night that will include the 2YO Colts & Geldings Semi Finals of the $300,000 APG Series, as well as appropriate recognition of this significant day. Copyright Â© 2014 Harness Racing Victoria, All rights reserved.