The 2012/13 harness racing season was capped off with the announcement of Majestic Mach as the Queensland Horse of the Year tonight.
The Grant Dixon-trained gelding won the award for his stellar three-year-old season winning the Group 1 Queensland Derby, the Group 2 Nursery Pace 3YO colts and geldings Final and QBred Final 3YO colts and geldings as well as three Group 3 events.
In the eyes of the industry media and administrator voting panel, the gelding beat other Horse of the Year nominees Forever Gold and Devil Dodger. Majestic Mach’s owners Solid Earth Pty Ltd managed by Kay Seymour accepted the award at the 2013 Queensland Harness Awards Night on Sunday, October 13 at the Tattersall’s Club with a host of industry stakeholders.
The star three-year-old also took home the Queensland 3YO Horse of the Year title as well as the QBred Achiever of the Year. The performance of Majestic Mach and stablemates Charming Allie and Joys A Babe ensured that owner and breeder Solid Earth Pty Ltd secured the Queensland Breeder and Owner of the Year titles also.
Hosted by Racing Queensland, the night recognised the season’s achievements in the harness racing industry.
Grant Dixon was the recipient of the Queensland Trainer of the Year, also taking home the Albion Park, Gold Coast and Redcliffe Harness Racing Clubs’ Trainers Premierships.
Mathew Neilson was awarded the Queensland Driver of the year, also claiming the Redcliffe Drivers Premiership.
The 2013 Queensland Harness Awards winners include:
- Queensland Horse of the Year – Majestic Mach
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- Queensland Trainer of the Year – Grant Dixon
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- Queensland Driver of the Year – Mathew Neilson
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- Queensland 4YO & Older Horse of the Year – Forever Gold
- Queensland 3YO Horse of the Year – Majestic Mach
- Queensland 2YO Horse of the Year – Hezarealgem
- Queensland Breeder of the Year – Solid Earth Pty Ltd
- Queensland Owner of the Year – Solid Earth Pty Ltd
- QBred Achiever of the Year – Majestic Mach
- Chairman’s Award – Narissa McMullen
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- Hall of Fame – Chris Garrard and Wayne Wilson
- BOTRA Pegasus Award – Warren Cummins
- BOTRA Junior Driver Encouragement Award – Lauren Jones and Trent Moffatt
- BOTRA Rising Star Award – Narissa McMullen and Adam Sanderson
- Trotting Horse of the Year – Mister Malakye
- Trotting Drivers Premiership – Grant Dixon
- Trotting Trainers Premiership – Neville Ryan
- Redcliffe HRC Horse of the Year – In Default
- Redcliffe HRC Drivers Premiership – Mathew Neilson
- Redcliffe HRC Trainers Premiership – Grant Dixon
- Gold Coast HRC Horse of the Year – Jaxon Fella
- Gold Coast HRC Drivers Premiership – Grant Dixon
- Gold Coast HRC Trainers Premiership – Grant Dixon
- Albion Park HRC Horse of the Year – Montana Pablo
- Albion Park HRC Drivers Premiership – Grant Dixon
- Albion Park HRC Trainers Premiership – Grant Dixon
For the first time in years, Racing Queensland once again inducted two nominees into the Hall of Fame. Both Chris Garrard and Wayne Wilson were inducted for their many years of service to the industry.
Chris Garrard is one of Queensland harness racing’s most prominent personalities. Initially a hobbyist with a trainer-driver licence, ‘CJ,’ as he is commonly referred to, has drastically increased his involvement in the sport over the last three decades and he now wears many hats with pride.
His sponsorship contributions through his various businesses have seen him acknowledged as one of the industry’s major benefactors. He is an active owner and breeder, and races a team of pacers under the care of his son Daren Garrard.
He has also played a key role in the committees of Albion Park and Redcliffe, where he is the patron. With a family history that goes back generations, Chris Garrard has a deep passion for harness racing.
Wayne Wilson began broadcasting the trots soon after his arrival in Brisbane in the late sixties and early seventies. He became the voice of Queensland harness racing in 1976 until his retirement at Village Kid’s Inter Dominion in 1986 when he took on the full-time role of the metropolitan gallops caller.
The recipient of many media awards and more recently, an induction into the Hall of Fame at the 2013 Queensland Thoroughbred Awards, Wayne modernised the harness broadcast and was one of the leaders in his field.
He has given the Queensland harness industry some great promotion over many years through radio and television and still to this day, retains a love and active interest in the harness industry.