Day At The Track

Passing of Colin Campbell

06:27 PM 23 Feb 2019 NZDT
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Colin Campbell,Harness racing
Colin Campbell with his beloved mobile barrier

Despite the celebration of Chinese New Year at the track, there was an understandable air of sadness at Gloucester Park last night as news of the passing earlier in the day of former WA Trotting Association starter Colin Campbell spread.

Colin Campbell was the WATA’s starter at Gloucester Park, and the leading country tracks, for the best part of 40 years before his retirement.

Colin first became involved in harness racing in the sixties helping his father, hobby-trainer Keith, with a small team and Colin drove his first winner behind Gallivant at York on 17th April 1968.

Colin drove 23 winners between 1968 and 1977 including four in the city with his biggest success coming in the 1969 Navy Cup at Richmond Raceway with Codicil.

The 1969 Navy Cup will long be remembered for the disqualification of Slick Deed which was the first horse past the post but failed to survive protests by the drivers of the second, third and fourth horses.

Colin loved to tell the tale of the 1969 Navy Cup.

Colin Campbell’s achievements as a driver paled into insignificance to those as a starter and he started the 1982, 1989, 1996 and 2004 Perth Inter Dominion Grand Finals along with more than 45,000 minor races.

A knockabout bloke he was warmly regarded by all drivers for his skill as a starter which was combined with an infectious sense of humour and a measure of irreverence.

Drivers in last night’s Governor's Cup wore black armbands as a mark of respect for the passing of one of harness racing’s true characters.

Deepest sympathies are extended to Colin’s widow Lorraine and all members of the Campbell family on their sad loss.

Alan Parker

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