Day At The Track

Robert Reid Obituary

04:51 PM 09 Jun 2016 NZST
Comment (...) Tweet Share Email Print
Stock photo Harness Racing NZ 2.jpg
The Digital Birdcage

The Franklin businessman who bred and owned two New Zealand Cup winners; an Inter Dominion quinella; won 300 races; and netted more than $6 million in stakes passed away on Waiuku on Sunday (June 5).

Robert Reid was 82.

The retired market gardener bred and owned Luxury Liner and Christopher Vance to win the 1988 and 1991 Cups with his late brother Leo.

Luxury Liner also won the 1987 and 1988 Auckland Cups while Christopher Vance won that Group One feature in 1991. He also quinella-ed the 1991 Inter Dominion grand final with Mark Hanover (Mark Purdon) and Christopher Vance.

Tony Herlihy (MNZM) drove both Cup winners.

Mr Reid’s wife Janice said her late husband was born in Ngaruawahia and then relocated with his family to Franklin when he was just four. Ten years later he left school to work in local market gardens.

“He was a workaholic from the time he left school. Robert was destined to be a farmer. He harvested his first crop of vegetables when he was about 10 from their home garden.

“He later established Reid Brothers with Leo and started off with several crops before specialising in onions, pumpkin and squash.

“Robert talked his father into leasing some land off him, then when they proved they were capable they leased some more. Well before he was 20, Robert and Leo bought their first land. together which was the Kidd road base we still farm today. One great crop of carrots went towards paying for this property,” his wife said.

She said Mr Reid and his brother bought their first horse - Steads in 1961. Then Miranda Bay, a mare that was acquired for the “none too cheap” sum of $1000 guineas.

“It couldn’t run to save itself. Although that was probably his biggest ‘punt’, he definitely wasn’t a betting man!” Mrs Reid said.

She said her husband’s number one hobby was the horses and he would spend hours looking through stud books and bloodlines.

“It was about the only reading he did. We had many trips following the horses around Australia and New Zealand. The whole family has very fond memories of those times.

“Certainly, there were lots of proud moments with the races won, Robert said ‘it was a bit hard on the ticker’. His biggest achievement was having the first two horses home in the Inter Dominion grand final in Auckland in 1991.

“In his stable there were 50 horses than won 300 races. Robert was disappointed his brother Leo didn’t get to share the glory as he passed away just prior to the success of Luxury Liner and Christopher Vance,” Mrs Reid said.

Wiauku horseman, Steve Hunt, who worked for Mr Reid for 25 years up until January, said he was sad to hear of his former boss’s passing.

“I was his private trainer and early on I used to prepare his horses for trainers like Roy, Barry, and Mark Purdon, and also Tony Herlihy.

“He was a good friend of mine and very good to work for. He never ever told me what to do. He trusted my horsemanship. He was good to me and I will never forget him. He played a big part in my life,” Hunt said.

Mrs Reid said her husband had a heart bypass at 56 which bought him another 26 years of good life.

“He was proud of what he achieved and even in his hospital bed he wanted to know how the planting was going, and what the price of onions were doing,” she said.

Mr Reid’s funeral was scheduled for Graham’s Funeral Parlour in Tuakau at 10.30am today (Thursday).

He is survived by his wife of 56 years Janice, their four children, six grand children and one great grand child.

Robert Reid Winners (with broodmare in CAPS and wins and stake earnings):


Top Star 5 17,825

Country Star 10 45,532

Disco Girl 1 1,775

Proud Star 6 34,723

Top Vance 8 72,440

Christopher Vance 38 1,747,167

Mikes Pal 9 139,730

Disco Night 2 25,410

Christopher Too 2 16,450

Dynamite Girl 2 24,274

Operation Dynamite 2 9,365

Star Baron 1 4,065

Alert Motoring 8 147,813

Napoleon 11 124,515

Pacific Cruise 4 22,570

York Star 2 7,495

111 wins total and $2,441,149


Kiwi Lord 8 34,355

Julie Vance 7 73,168

Knight Vance 8 120,249

Motoring with Julie 2 10,136

Luxury Liner 37 1,721,984

Me An Roy 740,655

69 wins and $2,000,547


Vance Glory 13 119,365

Willy Run 7 31,850

Star Glory 8 50,625

Star Motoring 7 42,470

Major Danger 4 21,905

39 wins and $266,215


Jodi Vance 1 win and $10,635.


Miss Clevedon 13 79,930

Mark Hanover 18 700,597

Roy’s Advice 2 15,283

Mark Roy 11 249,916

Vance Lee 3 31,820

Clevedon Lord 3 15,755

Nippy Lord 4 25,810

Surdon 5 44,125

Miss Ardmore 5 62,180

OK Roy 1 4,420

Vice Regal 3 17,295

Hunter’s Valley 3 16,500

Miss O’Shea 2 11,860

Vicky Hanover 1 1,875

Upshot Harry 1 4,330

75 wins total and $1,281,696

STEADS 3 wins and $2,520

LE CHARLES 2 wins and $1,630


TOTAL STAKES $6,004,392.

Duane Ranger

Comment (...) Tweet Share Email Print

Read More News About...

Stallion Name

Next article: