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Gold is not the only thing that binds the two “BHRC” harness racing clubs, Bendigo and Bathurst together. There are many surprising similarities between the two regional cities and clubs: Edward Hargreaves discovered a 'grain of gold' in a billabong near Bathurst in 1851 sparking the NSW gold rush, while alluvial gold was discovered along the banks of the Bendigo Creek in 1851 and resulted in a major gold rush Bendigo with 110,000 residents and  Bathurst with  42,000 are both major regional centres, with Bendigo 150km and Bathurst 200km from their state capitals Bendigo and Bathurst both began night trotting racing a year apart: Bathurst 1953, Bendigo 1954 Both clubs hold a large number of TAB meetings annually  with Bathurst  running 50 race meetings and  Bendigo conducting 34 in 2015 Both were once the home of the famous Cobb and Co coach service. Cobb and Co’s first services began in 1854 between Melbourne and Bendigo. James Rutherford (also the breeder of legendary sire Globe Derby) shifted the headquarters and  10 coaches and nearly 100 horses from Bendigo district to Bathurst in 1862, where a massive coach building factory was built Juvenile stakes racing was developed by both clubs: The Bathurst Gold Crown commenced in1987 while Bendigo developed the Breeders’ Crown in 1998 before it was taken over by HRV to become the Australasian Breeders’ Crown. Bendigo marketing manager Brendan Baker and Bathurst CEO Danny Dwyer have developed a joint initiative where the two BHRCs will become sister clubs. They see many opportunities for sharing of ideas, tourism opportunities around the Bathurst Gold Crown and the return to Bendigo of the Australasian Breeders Crown semi-finals. Both cities also host major annual events including the Bathurst 1000 car race and the Bendigo Easter Fair Carnival. Both Brendan Baker and Danny Dwyer see many benefits to the clubs and the communities from the establishment of sister club relationships: Sister club signage that will be seen during Sky Racing coverage of races from both tracks Reciprocal membership rights Promotion of the clubs in monthly club newsletters, to members, owners, trainers and drivers In-house marketing to promote each venue. This could involve yearly joint race dates with accommodation options for people visiting each city either for harness racing or holidays The clubs to organise a Gold Crown Tour and a Bendigo Pacing Cup Tour Two chances for “Dual Club” meetings that race on the same dates. In 2016 it is May 18 and June 22. Promotion through the Harness Racing Australia website with press releases and stories. Cody Winnell Harness Racing Victoria

With the biggest name in Australian harness racing on his way, Saturday’s PETstock Bendigo Pacing Cup is the talk of the town. Lennytheshark’s nomination for the Group 2 $60,000 showcase has further elevated Bendigo Harness Racing Club’s calendar highlight, says marketing manager Brendan Baker. “Since we tweeted (that Lenny was coming) and put it on Facebook we have had good momentum and a number of people have called up chasing details,” Baker said. “People around the course and up and down the street are all talking about Lennytheshark. He’s the best horse in the country at the moment, so it’s been huge for the club.” Lennytheshark drew barrier five for the cup – the eighth race on a 10-race program – and is fresh from following his Inter Dominion win with victory in last month’s Good Form Victoria Cup. “To give the people from the Bendigo area, up to Swan Hill and Echuca – people will come a long way – a look at Lenny is a big plus for the club,” Baker said. “He’s turned into a real people’s horse, which is all steering in the right direction for the club and Bendigo.” But, Baker said, this was not the Lenny show, it’s the pacing cup, and the superstar seven-year-old was but one of many coveting the prize. “You’ve still got Franco Ledger, a C22, HectorjayjJay a C17, Im Corzin Terror who won the cup a few years ago,” he said. “They will not just hand it to Lenny on a plate. It is a Group 2 worth more than $60,000 and they will make him work for it.” Lords Raceway will also feature a grand contest in the seventh race, the Aldebaran Park 2016 Maori Mile. Introduced to the card as a $20,000 race in 2010, the mile’s importance has quickly snowballed. “It’s grown from strength to strength since its inception and we are very happy it was elevated to Group 1 status this year,” Baker said. And, with the winner also gaining an automatic invitation to the Great Southern Star’s elimination heats, the race carries a field befitting its status. “We’ve got last year’s winner in Maori Time back to defend her title,” Baker said. “Glenferrie Typhoon, Andy and Kate Gath’s horse, is in great form, and local hope Claudys Princess is racing well. There is the New Zealand horse Quite A Moment and Anton Golino’s Duchess Ella.” Off the track the club will also have many offerings for what Baker called “our biggest day of the year”. “All year round you build up to your pacing cup,” he said. “Last year was the first time for this new management team. We learned a lot. “There are a few areas we were lacking in, particularly children’s activities, and now there will be a kids’ zone and lots of food operators. It will be 34 or 35 degrees on Saturday and should be magnificent.” by Michael Howard Fields for Bendigo, Saturday 13 February 2016 Form guide for Bendigo, Saturday 13 February 2016  

Well known Bendigo resident, former top class cricketer, footballer and now a member of the executive team of the Bendigo Bank Dennis Bice has been awarded Life Membership of the Bendigo Harness Racing Club. Dennis has been an active member of the BHRC for over 25 years He served nearly fifteen years on the BHRC committee with 5 year break when he moved to Queensland in his employment with the Bendigo Bank. On returning from Queensland, he was elected as a Vice President and then elected President in 2007. Dennis served BHRC as President for 8 years, stepping down in 2015. During this time Dennis led the committee and staff to many milestones which included: The Maori Mile for trotters was conceptualised, rising from Group Three to Group One status The Bendigo Cup was and now continues to be sponsored by Petstock Personal Digital TVs were installed on window dining tables at Lord's Raceway. The Race For Fun Club was launched with the Bendigo Advertiser He oversaw the celebrations for the 60th anniversary of the opening of Lord’s  Raceway The Veteran Driver’s Challenge, now in its 6th year,  was created BHRC being awarded HRV Club of The Year BHRC developed and implemented a five year strategic plan Investigations into alternate steams of income were investigated, with a staffing restructure aimed at increasing non-racing income initiated Other highlights of Dennis’s time as President included Being a member of the Country Clubs Association representing middle-tier clubs With his wife Brenda, sponsored events and racing at BHRC through their Yorkshire Park Stud venture. Being a driver behind the conceptualizing of and growing of the Aldebaran Park Maori Mile trotter’s race, from a Group 3 race to a Group 2 and in 2016 a Group 1 race. Dennis has a long family involvement in Harness Racing. His grandfather Stan Lyon was an owner/trainer, owning the FFA pacer Mystic Robert which won several races at the Royal Melbourne Showgrounds in the 1970s Graeme Lyon, Dennis’s uncle, is a trainer/driver with many successes including Inter Dominion final placed trotter Northsea Rover, and promising trotter MaybeToTheMax The Lyon family including another Uncle, Peter, have been involved in ownership of many harness racing horses. Brenda and Dennis are successful owners with a highlight being owners of Moonee Valley Cup winner Rare Courage, and recently have several fillies including Watch The Dream  racing. They are breeders and yearling sale vendors with Yorkshire Park Standardbreds at their property in Axe Creek. Dennis and Brenda will be guests at Lord’s Raceway this coming Wednesday, February 3, to celebrate the Life Membership. A race, the Dennis and Brenda Bice Pace has been named in their honour. Appropriately, nine of the ten starters are owned or trained in the Bendigo district.  

Arguably Australia's best trotter, Keystone Del will trial at Lord's Raceway Bendigo on Sunday morning. Harness racing trials start at 9 am, with Keystone Del scheduled to compete in trial 6. ​Entry is free, and breakfast is available from the track kiosk. Keystone Del has recently changed stables, with Brent Lilley training, and Anthony Butt driving the gelding at his first hit-out for the new connections. Keystone Del , 1'53.9 is the winner of 30 races and has earned over $770,000 in stakes. For Trial Fields, click  here:

The DLO Plumbing Veteran Driver’s Trot at Lord’s Raceway Bendigo will turn back harness racing’s clock with a driver’s list that could be right out of a Melbourne Showgrounds race book. The race features on the program next Saturday night, November 7 when the Bendigo Harness Racing Club celebrates the 61st year of racing at Lord’s Raceway. The Bendigo Club has assembled one of the best lists of ‘master’ drivers available in Victoria to compete in the DLO Plumbing Veteran Driver’s Trot, one of feature races at the Anniversary Cup meeting. It is certain to be a great spectacle on the big ten race card with the drivers’ list including well known reinsmen who have played a significant part in Harness Racing’s Inter Dominion history and Victorian racing in general over the past four decades. The veteran competitors driving records read like a ‘Who’s Who’ of major race wins with  Inter Dominion victories, Hunter Cups, Breeders Crowns, Oaks, Derbies, Country Cups and just about every other major race feature listed on their career records. Longlea master reinsman, Brian Gath who has more than 3000 wins to his credit, and dual Inter Dominion winning driver Jim O'Sullivan from Maiden Gully are in the star studded line-up at Bendigo. The wizard of Great Western Peter Manning, a perpetual state leading trainer who has also  topped the national rankings and super veteran Neville Welsh from Elmore who made his name on the tight Royal Melbourne Showgrounds circuit along with Tatura-based Russell Thompson will don driver’s silks along with Inter Dominion winning driver Cliff Powell (Elmore) and well known Bridgewater trainer-driver Colin Redwood (Bridgewater). Previous winners Dick Lee and Graeme Whittle will return. Noel Shinn, the winningest of the legendary Shinn family will drive along with first time competitor Bill Spiteri who first drove at the Showgrounds in 1962. Victoria’s Labor Government have put their weight behind the celebrations providing funding for entertainment through the Raceday Attractions Program. The main feature is the $10,000 SAMIOS Plumbing Supplies Anniversary Cup for C5-C7 Pacers. The 61st Anniversary Meeting also includes horse gearing demonstrations, meet the Clerks Of Course,  opportunities for Double Sulky rides with professional drivers and rides beside the starter in the mobile barrier. Kids will not be forgotten, with Pony Trot races, a Jumping Castle, Face Painting, free lollies and icy-poles and much more. The first race of the 10-race program commences at 6.30pm. Bendigo Harness Racing Club 2015 Anniversary Cup meeting, November 7 Previous winners 2012 Keith Pratt 2013 Dick Lee 2014 Graeme Whittle (2014 drivers pictured) Veteran Drivers for 2015: Brian Gath,  Dick Lee, Peter Manning, Jim O'Sullivan, Cliff Powell, Colin Redwood, Noel Shinn, Bill Spiteri, Neville Welsh, Graeme Whittle and Glenn Williams. Brian Gath (Longlea) A member of the famous Gath dynasty drove his first winner at the Royal Melbourne Show in 1960. Has trained and driven multiple champions from Corop McEwen, to Safari. Won the 1978 Melbourne Inter Dominion Pacers Final with Markovina and finished second with Franco Tiger (1992 and Shakamaker (2002). Has driven in Europe and the U.S.A. Ian (Dick) Lee (Weering) Multiple Derby winning trainer/driver, who spent time in Wales at Prestatyn Raceway in the 1970’s. Top horses include 4 times pacing Derby winner Rufus Youngblood, Bendigo Cup winner Rhodonite, Dullard Cup winning trotters Glenfield Girl and Game Ebony, and Hamden’s Pride. Trains at Weering in the Western District. Dick won the 2013 edition of the BHRC Veteran Driver’s Trot. Peter Manning (Great Western) Master trainer of juveniles before expanding to train a large team at Great Western. Leading Australian trainer in 2004/5.  His three training/driving daughters include world record setting driver Kerryn. Standout horses include Kathryn Dancer, Pelicanrama, the champion international trotter Knight Pistol and 1996 Australian 2yo Pacer of the Year, Sheza Mona. Jim O’Sullivan (Maiden Gully) Leading Australian trainer 1978 and 79. Trained and drove standouts including Margaret Shannon, Quite Famous and It’s Motor Power.   He is a dual Interdominion winning driver winning the 1987 Inter Dominion Pacers Final with My Lightning Blue and the 1989 trotting final with Yankee Loch. Trains locally at Maiden Gully. Cliff Powell (Elmore) Trains at Elmore. First winning drive at Bendigo was Convive. Cliff trained and drove Derby Royale to victory in the 1978 Inter-dominion Trotter’s final in Melbourne to end Maoris Idols unbeaten streak. Has trained and driven many top notchers including Our Grattan, Modern Man, Belgian Accent (Shepparton Cup) Bendigo Cup winner Taronga, and Paula Morley ( Keiser Stuhl and Echuca Cup). Colin Redwood (Bridgewater) First drove in 1954. A member of Bridgewater’s Redwood family, immortalized by the annual Redwood 2yo trotters’ classic at Maryborough, named for Colin’s father Hugh. Colin and brothers Noel and Albert all trained and drove successfully. Colin’s trotter Rock n Dale raced in two Interdominions, 1976-4th and 1978-8th, and won the NSW Easter Cup in both 1973 and 1974.  Other trotters of note include Mount Alm. He represented Australia at the 1996 World Amateur Drivers Championship in Italy. He is best known now as a trainer having prepared over 210 winners since taking out his licence in the mid-1970’s. Noel Shinn (Wallan) A member of the Shinn Family with a century of participation, Noel’s grand-father Hubert won races in four States and a Melbourne driving premiership in 1933/34. His sons were Bill, Frank and Reg. Noel son of Reg, has achieved the most Melbourne driving (158) and training (198) successes of any of the family Had the first triple Victorian Sire Stakes champion Colbruce, and Inter-dominion finalists Colbruce and Stormrider. Galarion  won 10 of only 14 starts. Noel drove all nine winning foals of broodmare gem Pilgrim. Bill Spiteri (Mt.Cotterell) Commenced at the Showgrounds in 1961, but drove his first winner Provoke at the old Ararat track in 1962. Frayne Again 1975 and Wise Ruler 1976 won successive Maryborough Cups. Lara General, Frayne Again were good Showgrounds winners. Frayne Again was sold to the US. Brigadier General and Tee Cee Country were other good winners for Bill. Currently racing Marios Dream. Russell Thompson (Tatura) Former Kiwi, based at Tatura. Russell trained and drove Banana Spring in 1971 to wins in the Central Victorian Championship and HR Boyd Cranbourne Cup. Holy Smoke was a star of the stable in 1987-88 when it won the Victorian Sires Stake and Nyah Cup. Champion trotting relatives Son Of Flair and A Touch of Flair won Victoria Trotting Derbies, while Mighty Maori won the rich Vicbred 4yo Trot. Neville Welsh (Elmore) The 2012 Gordon Rothacker Medallist, and Hall of Famer who has driven winners in every decade since the 1950s. Began his career driving trackwork at a very young for father Lew first at Beaufort, then Sydenham, and drove his first winner Sea Witch at Horsham, aged just sixteen. His career highlights include the 1971 AG Hunter Cup aboard Son of Nancy and the 1974 National Drivers Invitation at the Melbourne showgrounds on Truant Armagh. Most notable however were his record breaking premierships in 1970/71 and 1971/72 where he drove 81 and 84 winners for the season respectively. Still drives his team sharing duties with son Clinton. Graeme Whittle (Bacchus Marsh) A hobby owner/trainer/driver who had some good horses and a lot of success at the Showgrounds and Moonee Valley. Some of his good horses were Tweedsmuire, (1977 Stawell Cup), Joueur (Echuca Cup), Slow Coach and recently Melpark Sunrise won the  Tontine for Trotters.  Graeme trains at Bacchus Marsh. Graeme won the 2014 edition of the BHRC Veteran Driver’s Trot. Glen Williams (Bacchus Marsh) Trainer and drove initially with father Les, at Digger’s rest and Woodvale, then Sebastian and Bacchus Marsh. Glen drove Truscott Boy early in its career, and won two VL Dullard Cups on top trotter Bundanoon Prince. Recent winners include Kadabra Dynasty.  

Bendigo trots are the place to be on Saturday night as the club holds a special evening to raise funds for Kez’s Hideaway, a retreat for women living with the challenges of breast cancer. Gates open from 5pm for the 10-race card with a special Lady Drivers Race featuring some of harness racing’s female participants donning pink driving pants to show their support for the cause. Reinswomen Monique Burnett, Amanda Turnbull, Ellen Tormey, Kate Gath, Donna Castles, Tanya Cavallaro, Kerryn Manning, Jodi Quinlan, Lisa Miles and Rebecca Bartley will all compete in the Kez’s Hideaway Lady Drivers Pace, Race 3 at 6.32pm. “The Bendigo club in conjunction with the OTIS Foundation are very proud to be supporting the Kez’s Hideaway Memorial Race Night,” Bendigo Harness Racing Club Sales and Marketing Manager Brendan Baker said. “Here at BHRC we think it is very important to support local causes and organisations.” Karlee Thorpe, the Bendigo Bank OTIS Ambassador, will be a guest speaker on the night, which will also feature the OTIS Foundation Pace (Race 4 at 7pm). A special auction will be held with money-can’t-buy experiences, including a mobile barrier ride at the trots and a double-seater sulky ride on the night! “We’re really looking forward to seeing the lady drivers race where all drivers will be wearing the OTIS Foundation/Paul Gray Builders/Kez’s Hideway Pink Pants,” Baker said. “Local builder Paul Gray is the driving force behind the build of Kez’s Hideaway, in memory of Paul’s late wife Kerri Gray.” Fantastic race night packages are still available by phoning Tracey on 03 5449 3205 or 0447 599 859. Alternatively you can email for more details. Harness Racing Victoria Related Links Fields for Bendigo, Saturday 29 August 2015 Form guide for Bendigo, Saturday 29 August 2015

Harness Racing Appeals & Disciplinary Board Racing Appeals & Disciplinary Board Result of the appeal held before the Harness Racing Victoria Racing Appeals and Disciplinary Board on 10 April 2015. Graeme Lang Against a $500 fine imposed by the stewards under Rule 168(1) at the Bendigo meeting on 19 March 2015. Appeal dismissed. HRV RAD Board Panel: Brian Collis QC (Chairman), John Denahy Appellant Representative: Joe Beder HRV Representative: Kylie Harrison TRANSCRIPT OF PROCEEDINGS RACING AND DISCIPLINARY BOARD BRIAN COLLIS QC, Chairman MR JOHN DENAHY EXTRACT OF PROCEEDINGS GRAEME LANG DECISION FRIDAY 10 APRIL 2015 MS K HARRISON appeared on behalf of the HRV Stewards MR JOE BEDER appeared on his behalf of Mr Lang  The Board has considered the evidence given at the stewards inquiry held on the 19th of March as per the transcript of that inquiry which has been tendered. We’ve considered the video footage of the race and we’ve considered the evidence and submissions this day including the documentary evidence. Mr Graeme Lang is 82 years of age, he has been involved in the harness racing industry for at least 60 years and is held in high esteem in the harness racing industry generally. We’ve been taken to his record since the year 1980 and it has been pointed out that on occasions when he has been charged with dropping his foot from the sulky rest that that has not resulted in any charge of improper driving and the he has been dealt with by way of caution or by way of moderate fines to say the least and in so being dealt obviously the stewards were not satisfied that there was any intentional act in those occurrences. The horse Katmandonny is a horse of moderate performance. In the concluding stages the Board is satisfied that Mr Lang did maintain a balanced posture and whilst maintaining that balanced posture his left foot did come down from the sulky rest. We are not satisfied on the evidence that there was any contact caused to the hind legs of the horse Katmandonny but we are satisfied on the balance of probabilities that the opinion of the stewards that his foot to leave the footrest in those circumstances was improper driving within the meaning of 168(1) of the Australian Rules of Harness Racing was a reasonably held opinion and therefore we dismiss the appeal with the finding of conviction. Further notwithstanding Mr Lang’s long and excellent record as the Board has found that he was guilty of improper driving on this occasion and as the penalty imposed by the stewards was the usual penalty for this offence we dismiss the appeal as to penalty also. Graeme Lang driving Katmandonny - The race in question The Racing Appeals & Disciplinary Board (RADB) is established under section 50B of the Racing Act (1958). The RADB is an independent Board established to hear and determine appeals in relation to decisions made under the rules to impose penalties on persons and to hear and determine charges made against persons for serious offences. Harness Racing Appeals & Disciplinary Board  

Leading Summer of Glory player Christen Me scored an all-the-way win in tonight's harness racing $50,505 Group 2 Petstock Bendigo Pacing Cup. The Cran Dalgety trained Kiwi superstar cleared out late for reinsman Dexter Dunn in the 2650m race, clocking a 54.1-second last half after being unchallenged in front mid-race, scoring a 14.1-metre win over runner-up Smudge Bromac. First-up since finishing second to Terror To Love in a stirring Cranbourne Pacing Cup on December 6, Christen Me – the winner of last year's Miracle Mile in Sydney and the reigning Hunter Cup champion – will be hard to beat in the Victoria Cup on January 31. Dunn was typically cool throughout tonight’s contest despite concession reinsman Zac Phillips pulling the first surprise off the arm and dashing to the lead from gate seven aboard outsider Hall Of Famer. The son of Christian Cullen quickly assumed the front with Hall Of Famer snaring the leader’s back. Im Corzin Terror and driver Alex Ashwood got mobile early and worked around to find the breeze before more moves came as the pace slowed. Chilli Palmer (Chris Alford), first-up from a spell, eased back to last early and the slow speed didn’t suit his cause. However, the son of Elsu was the eye-catcher of the race, launching home out wide in the home straight to just miss second in a photo-finish. His late splits will be super and many punters will pencil him into their black book. Smudge Bromac (Nathan Jack) produced a big run in second, the nine-year-old David Aiken trained entire the first of Aiken’s four cup runners over the line (Cold Major fifth, Wartime Sweetheart sixth and Jaccka Clive ninth). Bendigo Cup Finishing Order 1: Christen Me 2: Smudge Bromac 3: Chilli Palmer 4: Im Corzin Terror 5: Cold Major 6: Wartime Sweetheart 7: Uncle Wingnut 8: Jaccka Clive 9: Hall Of Famer Group 2 Petstock Bendigo Pacing Cup by Cody Winnell Courtesy of Harness Racing Victoria

Maori Time produced a harness racing scintillating track-record run to end Keystone Del’s winning streak and take the $32,275  Aldebaran Park Maori Mile at Bendigo tonight Saturday the 17th of January. Trained and driven by masterful educator of squaregaiters Chris Lang, Maori Time, a five-year-old mare by Pegasus Spur out of Sundonna, took off at the 800m employing catch-me-if-you-can tactics – and her rivals couldn’t. She had led from the pole draw but when she hit top gear mid-race, no one was going to nab her. A 28secs third quarter saw Maori Time skip clear as Keystone Del began to paddle as he pursued the frontrunner. Elegant Image (Kate Gath for trainer Andy Gath) tracked the winner and finished on well for second, Keystone Del (Blake Fitzpatrick for trainer Nicole Molander) battling away in third place. The winner’s mile rate of 1:55.6 set a new track record over the 1650m trip at Bendigo. Stoned I Am ran well for fourth and Realmein was a nice fifth after not having much luck in the last lap. by Cody Winnell Harness Racing Victoria

Celebrations will be aplenty as the Bendigo Harness Racing Club marks the 60th Anniversary of racing at the Lord’s Raceway. The 2014 Anniversary Cup – to be run on November 15 - commemorates the opening of the Lord’s Raceway track on the November, 17 1954. This was a major event for district as no registered trotting meeting had been held in Bendigo for nearly three decades. The track was named after A A Lord, President of the M&CTA and member of the Trotting Control Board, who gave great financial assistance to the Club. The famed Argus Newspaper wrote at the time the night “will usher a new dream raceway into Victoria’s network of provincial harness racing tracks ... Lord’s will be the first half mile tack to be lit in Victoria. Official circles predict that new records will come from: Times Attendance (Country) Bookmakers and Tote Turnover (Country) All over nominations and acceptances.” Argus Sportswriter Bruce Skeggs also wrote “Lord’s raceway is the finest trotting circuit I have ever seen. It is a perfect half-mile designed on classic American standards.” The meeting drew a record crowd of more than 14,000 people, which was a provincial trotting record, with press report of the time stating: “There was a traffic jam from Bendigo to Junortoun, a distance of three miles and cars travelling bumper to bumper moved along at a snail’s pace or were standing still for a long period”. Seven races were conducted, with the fastest rate of 2:09.8 and prizemoney ranging between 75 and 100 pounds.  Another highlight was a record 103 pounds winning dividend paid on James Dillon in the main event. These were odds of 412/1 for two lucky five-shilling tickets. The Anniversary Meeting will highlight a number of special features on the night. One lucky patron will win a Diamond Ring valued at $2250  supplied by Sens Jewellers via the Bendigo Advertiser Coupon Entry. There will be live music throughout the night by the “Rocking Donkeys”, kids’ entertainment, pony trot races and a range of other prizes and giveaways. A $2 entry will also see patrons have the chance to win great prizes in the “Movember Parade”, with proceeds going to the Movember Foundation, supporting men’s health. A new initiative also sees some lucky patrons given the chance to get up and close to the excitement of harness racing by winning double sulky rides with some of our leading drivers, and the chance to sit beside the starter in the mobile. Another feature of the night will be the running of the All Seasons Hotel Veteran Drivers’ Challenge.  Drivers who have played a significant part in Victorian and Australian Harness Racing history headline the field. Graeme Lang, Peter Manning, Jim O’Sullivan and Neville Welsh have all won either Australian or Victorian driving and training premierships. Group Races won by the drivers include Hunter, Victoria, Bendigo, Ballarat, Echuca and Geelong, Kilmore, Sydney Easter Trotters’ and Dullard Cups, Oaks, Derbys and Breeders’ Crowns. Another special aspect to the evening is four drivers who drove at the original Opening Night of Lord’s Raceway in 1954 have been invited to attend as special guests of the Club. They are Ted Zimmer - who drove a winner on the historic card - Bob Birthisel, Des Rothacker and Norm Mannix. HRV Media

When Bulla harness racing trainer Kerry O’Riley entered Ourboyjay in Saturday night’s Goldfields Catering 2YO Pace at Bendigo, he was under the impression his gelded son of Village Jolt would be a fair show of recording a second win at career start number seven. The pacer scored an impressive win at Yarra Valley two starts back in a 2C0 event before a luckless eighth of 11 at cricket-score odds in the Tatlow Stakes at Tabcorp Park Melton when he got carted back at a vital stage. But O’Riley was shocked when he realised who his competition would be in Saturday night’s $6,505 race -- none other than Australasia’s best two-year-old Follow The Stars and his highly rated stablemate Linda Lovegrace. Both Follow The Stars and Linda Lovegrace are trained by Mark Purdon and will be using Saturday’s race as a hit-out ahead of the rich Breeders Crown series. For good measure, another Kiwi in My Field Marshall – who has won three from six and hails from the smart Tim Butt camp in Christchurch – will also line up on Saturday night. “It’s a lot stronger a field than I thought it might be,” O’Riley chuckled. “Let’s just hope he can run a personal best on Saturday night. It’d be the stuff of fairy tales to think you could beat Follow The Stars.” But Daryl Douglas, who drives Ourboyjay, is somewhat more upbeat about the horse’s chances, according to O’Riley, even if it was just Douglas’ natural optimism shining through. “Daryl’s always pretty optimistic but he said to me, ‘If you’re not in it, you can’t win it’,” O’Riley said. While simply hoping for a positive run this weekend, O’Riley believes Ourboyjay will develop further next season. “He’ll make a better three-year-old and he hasn’t much luck as a two-year-old,” he said. “He locked wheels in the Vicbred semi-final and got knocked over on the top turn and then in the Tatlow he got caught behind a tiring horse.” Cody Winnell - Harness Racing Victoria   Related Links Fields for Bendigo, Saturday 09 August 2014 Form guide for Bendigo, Saturday 09 August 2014  

Harness Racing Victoria was saddened to hear of the weekend passing of Bill Hanson. Bill was an immensely popular harness racing man, whose enthusiasm and affability was infectious to all he met. Bill was a life member of Harness Breeders Victoria and he and wife Margaret were principals of Homevale Stud at Fern Hill. The stud stood many stallions and in 1990 purchased the legendary Maori’s Idol for stud duties, where he stayed until his death in 2006. Bill was an inaugural inductee into the VHRMA Hall of Fame in 2009. Officials from Bendigo and Mildura harness racing clubs spoke glowingly of Bill and his association with the sport. Mildura Club Manager Mark Kemp said Bill and Margaret would never miss a Mildura Cup Carnival. “They’d roll into town on the Monday and catch up with friends and they’d stay the whole week. Then they’d go home after the cup night on the Sunday,” Kemp said. “They formed very strong bonds with many up here in Mildura over the years.” Bill and Margaret would sponsor the Mildura Trotters’ Cup for several years and in 2013 the race was named in their honour. Mildura HRC will honour Bill at next Tuesday night’s Mildura meeting by naming a race after him. Bill also had a long and loyal association with the Bendigo Harness Racing Club, where he was a life member. Bendigo harness racing stalwart Des Rothacker, a long-time friend of Bill, said he would be missed. “He was very committed,” Rothacker said. “He requested Maori’s Idol be buried at the track. Just as you go into the club you can see a placard on the fence there about Maori’s Idol. That was at Bill’s request and the club was only too pleased to do it. “He had a lot of friends here. He donated a free service to one of his stallions for many years. “He enjoyed life and was a very good bloke and very good friend.” HRV CEO John Anderson said: “The industry is saddened to hear of Bill Hanson’s passing. He was a great friend of harness racing in Victoria and will be sorely missed. HRV sends its condolences to Margaret and family.” The funeral service for Bill will be held at the Thomas J. Scott Memorial Chapel in Piper St, Kyneton, on Friday, July 11, at 2.30pm. A burial at the Tylden Cemetery will follow. by Cody Winnell Harness Racing Victoria

Bendigo musician and advocate for homelessness Luke Owens is the new Young Ambassador for the Bendigo Harness Racing Club. Luke Owens, 21, the winner of the 2013 Pride of Australia Young Leader Medal, set up Bendigo for Homeless Youth in 2012 and managed to raise about $500,000 in just nine months. To date he has raised approximately $3 million for Homeless Youth and charities.  He is a co-founder of United for Change and among his other projects are  working with Haven Home Safe to build a $6 million housing development for low-income earners and with the Father Bob Maguire Foundation. Mr. Owens  is commencing his teaching studies at La Trobe Bendigo this year. Bendigo Harness Racing Club president Dennis Bice will formerly announce Mr. Owens appointment as the Young Ambassador for the BHRC at the Club Pacing Cup Eve Cocktail Party tonight at All Seasons Hotel and the 50th Bendigo Pacing Cup at Lord’s Raceway on Saturday night. Mr. Owens will take centre stage at the Pacing Cup singing the national Anthem before the 50th running of the feature Group 2 race. For more information contact: DAVID ALDRED (Bendigo Harness Racing Club) 54493205 |

Terang trainer/driver Matt Craven who represented his state in the Australasian Junior Driving Series a number of seasons back, has enjoyed his best harness racing season ever mixing both training and freelance driving.

Further heats of the Empire Stallions Vicbred Super Series were held at two venues in Victoria on Wednesday June 19 - Yarra Valley hosting the 3rd Heat for Three Year Old Colts & Geldings and the 3rd and 4th Heats for Four Year Old Entires & Geldings all over 2150 metres in the afternoon, while Bendigo presented the 5th & 6th Heats for both Two Year Olds over 2150 metres at the night session.

Few horsemen were busier than Mark Purdon yesterday.

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