Day At The Track

Newcastle Derby Sponsors achieve milestone

11:12 AM 29 Apr 2014 NZST
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Mark Colin Packaging and will bring up ten years of continuous sponsorship of the Newcastle Derby this Saturday night. They have supported harness racing in the region for some time having sponsored the Inter City pace at Maitland for a number of years. Owner Barrie Sponberg, who passed away several years ago, had a strong link with harness racing particularly in the Hunter Valley area. John Downing was instrumental in initially getting Mark Colin packaging as sponsors of the inter City Pace and then sowing the seed for the Newcastle Derby sponsorship.

Barrie had purchased horses off John and his wife Helen and they became close friends. The Hunter based Carmody family were also good friends with Barrie and they bred a number of horses that Barrie or his family raced. Barrie raced a number of good horses over the years including Star of Darkness who won 15 of 30 races including a NSW sires stakes 2YO fillies final at Harold Park in 1992. Negi Negi was another good horse. The ill fated pacer Howard Ino who won the first Newcastle Derby sponsored by Mark Colin packaging in 2004 defeating the mighty Karloo Mick was owned by Barrie's partner Janet and two of his daughters Anita and Lisa, Mary Rando was also part owner, and her husband Joe Rando trained many horses for Barrie. The club runs the Barrie Sponberg Memorial for the two year old division on Derby night each year.

The Mark Colin Packaging Newcastle Derby is the feature 3YO event at Newcastle and is worth $20,000. Each year the company brings over 100 guests to the paceway for the night and they have booked into the Apollo International Hotel and are sure to make a big weekend of it.

The first race on Saturday night will jump at 5.12pm

Courtesy of Harness Racing NSW











Nancy O'Grady | Executive Assistant | Harness Racing New South Wales |


22 Meredith Street Bankstown NSW 2200


T: 02 9722 6600| F: 02 85805792 | E:| W: &








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