Day At The Track
Search Results
81 to 96 of 2025

Scripts from 2016 Victorian Harness Racing Media Association Hall of Fame Night, courtesy of legendary trots scribe MAX AGNEW CARLOTTAS PRIDE – Hall of Fame inductee Clearly the finest trotter of her day in Australia during the 1950s, Carlottas Pride was bred by Victoria’s top breeder of that era, Eric Cochran, who leased the filly to trainer George Gath where she raced in the name of his wife Gladys throughout her wonderful career of 45 victories that included 16 classics and the major races of the day. In late December of 1955, she easily beat her own track record at the Melbourne Showgrounds, then at her next start when taken up to Sydney’s Harold Park, she set a new track record there.  A month later when floated by stablehand Ron Peace to Adelaide to defend her title in that State’s major trot, the South Australian Trotting Cup, she overcame her 96 yards handicap to win, setting yet another track record for the small Wayville circuit when driven by Norm Gath, younger brother of the trainer.    Another memorable achievement for Carlottas Pride was her taking on the top pacers in a Sydney Spring Cup, easily winning this major pacing event with second place to the outstanding pacer Maestro’s Melody, a placegetter in an Inter Dominion Pacing Final. The morning after one of the mare’s wins at Harold Park when driven by Neville Gath, elder son of George, early the next morning Neville was floating Carlottas Pride back to Melbourne and diverted across to Leeton where a cousin was to be married that day, planning to stable the mare for a few hours at the trotting track. He was surprised to discover there was a race meeting that afternoon, and when the club realised who it was coming in the gate, they invited Neville to put on an exhibition trot with the mare. To then, Leeton had never included a trotting race at any meeting.  After her trial, Neville was delighted to learn Carlottas Pride had easily beaten the track record for pacers there. A wonderful trotter that set track records wherever she went, we welcome Carlottas Pride into our Hall Of Fame for 2016, with Neville Gath to accept this honour on behalf of connections.   BEN CORAM – Hall of Fame inductee When Ben Coram attended a horse sale in 1933 near Dandenong, he knew little about trotting, though handling horses every day that pulled the milk carts he operated. He took an interest in an untried young pacer when it was led into the sale ring. Urged on by a mate to put in a bid and save a horse from the knackery, it was knocked down to Ben for 11 guineas, about 22 dollars. Sending the horse to a trotting trainer, the horseman soon after declared it was useless trying to get this one to the races, so Ben decided to train it himself, enabling them both to learn about harness racing. With Ben in the sulky, its first win was at Ascot, opposite the Melbourne Showgrounds. Obviously it did not impress greatly as when it later saluted for its third victory there, it returned a record 71 pounds with the on-course tote, equal to 142 dollars. Dan’s Son, with Ben in the sulky, went on improving until culminating its racing career by winning the 1938 Adelaide Inter Dominion on the small Wayville track. Flushed with this success, Coram came to enjoy further victories with other horses including the smart Miraculous. After the Melbourne Showgrounds opened in November of 1947, Ben, along with his sons Bruce and Lloyd, each drove with success there. More recently a grand-daughter of Ben, Georgie Coram, purchased a trotter at the Tabcorp Park Yearling sales, where among its wins has been one this past season at this very track.   Ben Coram – the man who saved an untried pacer from becoming dogs’ meat, and rewarded when later it became an Inter Dominion Champion – a worthy inductee into the Hall Of Fame – with Georgie Coram to accept on behalf of the Coram family.   ADAPTOR – Hall of Fame inductee A 1963 colt by Dick Adios, Adaptor was raced by Steve Touhey of Serpentine, and trained and driven by Jack Hargreaves from Korong Vale. The colt’s training track had been created in a large wheat paddock where Jack had also trained several well-known pacers including the darling of country harness, Faye Marie. From this background, Adaptor had 45 starts for 27 victories, a record that would surely have been improved upon had he not been such an unreliable horse away from a standing start. The strapper of the horse was the owner’s son, Brian, who played football in the Bendigo League for Golden Square, and the colours worn in Adaptor’s wins were the same as this footy team. Though winning several classics as a youngster, the season 1969 would be this stallion’s big year. He started it off by winning the Apollo Mile at the Melbourne Showgrounds setting a new world record for a three-furlong track of 2:00.4.  He then captured the Bendigo Cup from 24 yards behind after being slowly away.  Then, on March 10 at Sydney’s Harold Park behind the mobile, he won the third running of the Miracle Mile in 1:59.1, beating the Kiwi Twinkle Hanover. The champion staying mare Richmond Lass finished fifth in that event. Within three days of that victory, American interests purchased the five-year-old Adaptor for $120,000, plus a contingency of a further $75,000. This was the highest price an Aussie pacer had to then been sold to North America. He won several races in the USA going smart times. In one of these wins he lowered his best time to 1:58.2.  When retired to stud there, he was given few opportunities, but did leave a handful of winners. Accepting the induction of Adaptor into the Hall Of Fame is the horse’s one-time strapper Brian, the son of the late Steve Touhey.   JACK McKAY – Hall of Fame inductee With the induction of Jack McKay into the Harness Racing Hall Of Fame, it is the second time we have two brothers involved – the first being Neville and Brian Gath, and now the late Jack McKay following in the footsteps of his older brother Bill who was inducted in 2010.   Both brothers trained at the Melbourne Showgrounds at one time, where they dominated the classics for two and three-year-olds, often with Bill driving the winners trained by brother Jack. Among the major clients Jack trained for in this era were three notable breeders – the Abrahams family of Meadowbrook Stud; Jack Campbell of Loddon Valley Stud, and the man they called ‘Minyip Jack’. Few trainers of any era have been able to match the number of classic winners Jack McKay trained, as they included such stars as the great Argent, inducted into the Hall Of Fame in 2009.  She later produced the outstanding colt Gyro for Jack. Other classic performers he trained as youngsters included Dale Spring, Chrome Gift, Explicit, Sheffield Globe, Pacing Gift, Alternative, Charltonian, and Receiver. Then there were Edict, Cute Bono, Harold Dillon, Kowtow, Clan Mactavish, and Geeteevee.  There are many who believe his best was either the filly Argent, or her son Gyro, while he also trained their close relatives Gyration and Sperry. Many might not remember that it was Jack who also trained Field Battery before it later sired Inter Dominion champion Minuteman. Jack was a man who was quietly spoken – though he did on one occasion speak up knowing it would get him into a spot of trouble with certain stewards when he told them they were getting it all wrong. Speaking his mind like that cost him a little holiday, but he believed it only right to point out why they were so wrong. He worked his horses hard, but no one turned them out fitter than J.P. McKay, and we welcome this fine horseman into the Hall Of Fame for 2016, with his daughter Jo Noonan representing the family tonight.   DON DOVE – Hall of Fame inductee A highly successful trainer-driver, Don Dove had something that most colleagues never had – his own sire. After making his mark early on as a driver, Don began training and driving the progeny of Dignus, a grand-son of Light Brigade he had purchased. Many of its 57 winners he trained and drove himself.      The most memorable of these of course was his best-ever pacer, a 1966 colt he named Monara. It won successive A. G. Hunter Cups in 1973 and 74, and many other races – so often with this brilliant beginner going to the lead and then Don playing cat-and-mouse tactics out in front before dashing this son of Dignus away and holding off all comers. Those who may remember the 1972 Inter Dominion Final when Don was having a little holiday, will agree Monara was something beaten into second place that night. Don won many races on his brother Eric’s trotter Just Money, along with Nelson’s Report, Lauries Legacy and Kara Miss, and filled in well when winning the 1965 Warragul Cup driving the great little Macaree, and the 1967 Victoria Derby driving Kelly Kid. When the Victorian Trainers and Drivers Association formed in 1968, he was elected to its first committee. Don is also the father of Trevor and Stephen, both well known horsemen of a few seasons back. In retirement, Don Dove moved to Queensland in 1998 and it was there he passed away in 2014 at the age of 86. Wife Betty Dove accepted on behalf of the family.   JACK & JOHN CAMPBELL – Hall of Fame inductees A year or so after night trotting opened in Melbourne in November, 1947, Jack Campbell, then a farmer near Charlton, recognised the urgent need to breed pacers to fill these ranks in town. In turning his farm into a trotting stud, he was told the best broodmares on either side of the Tasman were from the Pride Of Lincoln family in New Zealand, but the Lancaster family rarely ever sold these to rival breeders. Jack went to work on Mr Lancaster, and the seven mares that arrived by boat in Sydney from New Zealand for him included four from this famous family, creating a wonderful foundation for his band of mares. Jack himself raced three pacers back then that won the minimum of seven races in one season needed to go through the classes at the Melbourne Showgrounds in a season – these were Lassie Mactavish, Charltonian and Pacing Gift.  Jack Campbell was named ‘Victorian Owner of the Year’, back when you only got a letter from the Board to say you had won such an honour! Among the numerous classic winners Jack bred was Sheffield Globe, later to win two A.G. Hunter Cups, finishing second in another after dragging a flat tyre for most of the event. That great pacer Dales Gift was a son of Pacing Gift. He also bred Juniors Image, first past the post in a New Zealand Inter Dominion only to lose it in the stewards’ room. The best sire he stood was Noble Scott, six times No.1 sire in Australia. He enjoyed leasing out mares to battlers to get them started. One of these mares foaled the outstanding Achamar Chief. In 1972 his only son John married Kay, and his father elevated him to be the new studmaster, with the couple moving into the home on the family property then near Boort named Loddon Valley Stud.  Until then, his father had often sent out a mare or two to an outside stallion to secure new blood, but with young John now in charge, he began breeding their mares to their own stallions. Among the best pacers John has bred was the much travelled Flashing Red, winner of two New Zealand Cups and an Auckland Cup. Rip Van Winkle was a star in Australia in its day, while Exotic Strike won the APG 2YO Final, and Turbo Tyson was a multiple classic winner in Tasmania.     Jack and John Campbell – breeders of hundreds of winners in Australian harness racing, and worthy inductees to our Hall Of Fame.  We invite John Campbell to accept their award.   ELEVATED TO LEGEND STATUS – POPULAR ALM Since the Victorian Harness Racing Hall Of Fame began in 2009, only two horses have been elevated to Legend’s status – Maori’s Idol and Globe Derby, both standouts in the history of the sport. Tonight, a third great horse will achieve this rare honour, when we salute the brilliant Popular Alm. In-bred to Adios, this magnificent looking colt with a soft and silky bay coat, was bred at Bendigo by Arthur Pearce and his wife Gwen, and driven to its early victories by son-in-law John Mamouney. The horse they call ‘Poppy’ was then sold to clients of the Knight stable at Kilmore.  Popular Alm was surely the fastest and most brilliant pacer of them all, setting a world record for a one-mile trial at Moonee Valley in 1983 when stopping the clock at 1:53.2. Many to attend the gallops on a Saturday afternoon at the ‘Valley’ would stay around to watch this horse perform, and he never let them down, often winning by wide margins. One can only wonder what a horse like ‘Poppy’ could pace on a track like today’s Tabcorp Park. On two occasions, sickness and injury, upset plans for Inter Dominion campaigns.   His racing career also looked over when he broke a leg on the training track.  After having screws inserted in the leg, there were many well-wishers during his months of recovery, including many get-well cards posted to the Knights from children. Like a true champion, Popular Alm did return to the racetrack for two further events – winning them both for reinsman/trainer Vin Knight, with hardly a dry eye in the crowd at Moonee Valley.   Popular Alm retired having won 49 races and pocketing $710,883 for his happy owners. At stud he could not match his racing record, though three of his offspring did win in fast times. To represent the owners of this remarkable pacer is John Green, one of the original syndicate members when the horse was sold to the Knight stable. VIDEO: Re-live Popular Alm's 1983 Winfield Cup win at Moonee Valley (2/12/1983)

November 16, 2016, Louisville, Kentucky---The University of Louisville Equine Industry Program announced today that Jeffrey Gural, a long-time New York real estate magnate, Standardbred breeder and owner, and, more recently, harness racing track owner and operator in New Jersey and New York, has been selected at the recipient of the John W. Galbreath Award, given each year since 1990 to a person or persons who have led successful equine enterprises. "The Galbreath Award recognizes people who have built successful enterprises that serve the industry and act in a positive way to build marketing initiatives that encourage participation in the horse industry by others," said Tim Capps, the director of the Equine Industry Program. "Jeff Gural's love of horses and of the game of harness racing has driven his desire to sustain the sport and make it a better place, first for fans, then for participants. He's a believer in the sport, and has invested a lot of his money and time into making it more vibrant and more deserving of peoples' attention." Gural became part of New York's complex and challenging real estate industry as a birth-right, growing up in the home of Aaron Gural, who made the commercial real estate business in New York his passion from the late 1930's onward. Aaron Gural would build a large real estate management company which would become, arguably, the city's largest in terms of square footage under management, running more than eight million square feet of real estate. His son, Jeff, found his way into the same business with his father, but not before earning a degree in civil engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic University, a private school located in Troy, New York, known as an incubator of promising engineers but not horse racing enthusiasts or participants. "I got interested in harness racing as a young guy, going to the New York tracks, in particular Roosevelt Raceway on Long Island. We would gather a bunch of guys and go out and bet and drink beer and have a great time," says Gural, who admits he fell in love with horses along the way, without recognizing at the time that they, and the industry, would become one of his chief passions. Gural began his real estate career in 1966 when he went to work for the Morse-Diesel Construction Company, joining his father's firm in 1972. "Of the things I'm grateful for, one is being born in a real estate family and another is the things I learned from my father, one of which is that to be successful in commercial real estate you need to have a long-term perspective, be in it for the long haul. Gural would become the head of Newmark Frank in the late '70's, then lead it through both national expansions and international efforts that would result in a strategic partnership with Knight Frank, a London-based company in 2006. That would bring them into the international real estate business in a major way, and would lead to their acquisition by BGC Partners, a public company traded on NASDAQ. While at age 74, Gural still manages the buildings the company owns and operates on a daily basis, he is the practical and spiritual leader of American Racing and Entertainment LLC, which operates "racinos" at Vernon Downs and Tioga Raceway in western New York, and perhaps harness racing's most glamorous facility at the Meadowlands in northern New Jersey. "I have two Standardbred farms in New York, and a lot of horses, which I love being around and watching them," says Gural. "They have a calming effect on me!" Not so calming are the operations of the three tracks, which have been upgraded and are marketed more than their competitors. While the "Great Recession" was damaging to the horse industry in general, its impacts on the racing industry were particularly visible through sharp declines in foal crops, drops in wagering at virtually all tracks, and cuts in race days across the country. Gural stepped in as the owner of the two New York tracks---one senior manager at a New York track in their area credits Gural with making a bad situation tolerable. "He saved New York harness racing upstate without question. He was the indispensable guy, the person who made the difference." As notable were his efforts at the Meadowlands, where he decided to lease the operation from the state, then leave the old plant behind and build a new facility, smaller but more promotable and usable than the prior facility. Had he done just that he would have satisfied many concerned harness industry participants who were looking for ports in the storm. However, .................. Gural has been a strong advocate for cleaning up the sport, "making it something people can believe in again," as he puts it, and that has rubbed a number of people the wrong way. Gural has suspended trainers and owners for repeated drug use and other bad habits that he feels are not appropriate at a time when horsemen need to put on a quality show that emphasizes the best in horse care and management, and a good show, besides. "We spend real money on marketing, on telling people why this is a good game to participate in, so we need to make sure that what we tell them is fair and accurate," says Gural, whose tone can be charming (he's a major philanthropist in New York) or blunt, but rarely both. As a self-acknowledged liberal Democrat, he knows and has known leading Democratic politicians for years, but acknowledges that the current political climate is mixed for gaming efforts, having backed a visible effort to bring a casino to the Meadowlands only to see it fall in popularity to the point he and fellow supporter Paul Fireman announced in late summer that they were backing away from the idea for the moment. It is taking a longer time than he would like to get the stars aligned in his harness world, but he's been going down this road for awhile, so attempts to be philosophical: "We have to change in order to survive; having said that I continue to believe that change---positive change---is a possibility, and a necessity," says Gural. The Galbreath Award will be presented at the Speed Art Museum, adjacent to the College of Business, on Thursday evening, November 17th. Tim Capps Director, Equine Industry Program University of Louisville

The horse who has captivated a nation attracted the audience’s applause one more time when Lennytheshark was crowned harness racing 'Victorian Horse of the Year'. The David Aiken trained, Chris Alford driven, Martin and Kevin Riesley owned seven-year-old was awarded the major equine honour at Sunday night’s 2016 Gordon Rothacker Medal celebration at the Crown Palladium. The award was reward for Lennytheshark’s outstanding 2015-16, in which his successes included winning the Perth Inter Dominion and Good Form Victoria Cup, in addition to second placings in the Miracle Mile and Len Smith Mile. “It’s quite humbling to be up here,” part-owner Martin Riesley said. “The horse has done a fantastic job. “After the season, you have a look at the horses who have gone before and won these awards and it really puts it into context how special it is.” Gammalite, Popular Alm, Shakamaker and Sokyola are but some of the superstars of the trots whose company Lennytheshark rightly shares, having on the night also officially received the Harness Racing Australia Horse of the Year award. “It’s an absolute credit to the whole team that goes behind Lenny,” Mr Riesley said. “The way that David (Aiken) and the whole Aiken team manage him from the time he spends in the water walker to our vet Simon Robinson, Patrick Ryan when the horse was coming back – he spent I don’t know how many kms just walking – and the whole team has just put in an awesome effort.” And it’s also a family affair, not only for the owning father-and-son, but for many who have been adopted into the wider Lennytheshark family. “It’s not only our immediate family, staff at our work, cousins, distant cousins who you don’t even know come out of the woodwork. I went to Flemington races yesterday, I was on the bus and someone wanted to come up and talk about Lenny with me who I didn’t even know. It’s just fantastic and we all enjoy it.” Lennytheshark, who will soon head to Perth to defend his crown, won the honour ahead of fellow Victorian Horse of the Year nominees Ideal For Real, Rocknroll Magic and Keystone Del. The winners of the horse of the year categories were as follows: Two-year-old pacing filly: Petacular (trained by Michael Stanley) Two-year-old pacing colt and gelding: The Storm Inside (Emma Stewart) Two-year-old trotting filly: Kyvalley Kyrie (Brent Lilley) Two-year-old trotting colt and gelding: Illawong Byron (Jodi Quinlan) Three-year-old pacing filly: Rocknroll Magic (Emma Stewart) Three-year-old pacing colt and gelding: Dont Hold Back (Mario Attard) Three-year-old trotting filly: High Gait (Nicole Molander) Three-year-old trotting colt and gelding: Cruisin Around (Michael Hughes) Four-year-old pacing filly: Delight Me (Emma Stewart) Four-year-old pacing colt and gelding: Ideal For Real (Emma Stewart) Four-year-old trotting filly: Endsino (Andy Gath) Four-year-old trotting entire and gelding: Sparkling Success (John Meade) Aged pacing filly: Nike Franco (Dean Braun) Aged pacing colt and gelding: Lennytheshark (David Aiken) Aged trotting filly: Maori Time (Brent Lilley) Aged trotting entire and gelding: Keystone Del (Brent Lilley) Victorian Horse of the Year: Lennytheshark (David Aiken) Michael Howard (HRV Media/Communications Co-Ordinator)

He was the voice of the Sydney harness racing scene for many years and former racecaller Kevin Thompson was recognised for his contribution to the industry when receiving the Don Clough OAM Appreciation Award. Thompson was surprised when handed the honour at the Arthur J Gallagher Industry Awards Night in Sydney on Saturday evening. “I’m absolutely shocked, I thought I was just coming here to present an Award not to receive one,” Thompson said. “It really is an honour to get this Award. “I’ve been in harness racing ever since I left school and I wanted to be a racecaller all my life. “When you have a job that you love, it’s not a job it’s a hobby.” Previous winners of the Don Clough OAM Appreciation Award include: 2009                            Lynette Phillpott 2010                            John Coffey 2011                            Wally Mann 2012                            Les Camarda 2013                            Richard Earnshaw 2014                            Ross Gigg (posthumously) 2015                            John Tapp Amanda Rando

He has only tasted defeat once in his career and Our Waikiki Beach continued his winning record when crowned New South Wales Horse of the Year at the Arthur J Gallagher Industry Harness Racing Awards night in Sydney on Saturday. The NSW Derby winner had nine starts in the state last season resulting in eight wins which was enough to convince the judges, made up of media, to earn 63 per cent of the votes. Owner Trevor Casey was in shock: “He’s an exciting horse and I look forward to him returning to the track over here (Australia),” Casey said. “It’s fantastic to win this Award, I’ll treasure it for life.” Our Waikiki Beach made a clean sweep of awards also being handed the NSW Three-Year-Old of the Year and NSW Three-Year-Old Colt and Gelding Pacer of the Year. Other award winners were: Aquadec NSW Broodmare of the Year – Full Pleasure; Aquadec NSW Sire of the Year – Sportswriter; Bulli HRC NSW 2YO Trotter of the Year – Pegasus Elegance; Cockburn and Co NSW 2YO Filly Pacer of the Year – Shezallapples; Cockburn and Co NSW 2YO Colt and Gelding Pacer of the Year – Astride; Wagga HRC NSW 2YO of the Year – Astride; Bulli HRC NSW 3YO Trotter of the Year – Bacardi Hurricane; Alliance Contractors NSW 3YO Filly Pacer of the Year – Our Dream About Me; Albury HRC NSW 3YO Colt and Gelding Pacer of the Year – Our Waikiki Beach; IntelliTek NSW 3YO of the Year - Our Waikiki Beach; Bulli HRC NSW Aged Trotter of the Year – On Thunder Road; Club Menangle Aged Mare Pacer of the Year – Arms Of An Angel; Club Menangle Aged Entire and Gelding Pacer of the Year – Have Faith In Me; Club Menangle Aged Horse of the Year – Have Faith In Me. Amanda Rando

Bathurst horseman Steve Turnbull was given one of the highest honours when named a Harness Racing New South Wales Living Legend at the Industry Awards Night in Sydney on Saturday evening. Turnbull was recognised for his many achievements in his career including taking out 11 NSW Trainers Premierships. “To be classed up there with Dad and those other great names, it’s a really great honour,” Turnbull said. The 60-year-old has trained and driven winners in most of the state’s feature races and has also tasted success in the two major features, the Inter Dominion and Miracle Mile, with Smooth Satin. This Award is strictly merit based and is not necessarily given each year, in fact the Living Legend Award has not been awarded since 2011. Previous Living Legend Inductees have been: 1998       A D (Tony) Turnbull 1999       W G (Bill) Whittaker (since deceased) 2000       K B (Kevin) Newman 2001       L D (Don) Clough (since deceased) 2002       B P (Brian) Hancock 2004       E F (Eric) Hando (since deceased) 2007       H (Harry) Pearce 2011       C (Colin) Watts Amanda Rando

Given the chance to work alongside some of New Zealand’s best trainers in Barry Purdon and Cran Dalgety is an experience most young harness racing drivers would not pass up. So when Martelle Maguire and Tom Pay had their names called out as the winners of the Junior Driver Encouragement Awards at the Arthur J Gallagher Industry Awards Night in Sydney on Saturday they were ecstatic. Up against four other drivers each, Maguire was crowned with the Lexus of Parramatta Metropolitan Junior Driver Encouragement Award while Pay was the Daily Form Service Country equivalent. Other award winners were: Garrards Horse and Hound Champion Driver – Todd McCarthy; Garrards Horse and Hound Champion Junior Driver – Todd McCarthy; Garrards Horse and Hound Champion Trainer – Steve Turnbull; Garrards Horse and Hound Leading Hobbyist Driver – Wes Komorowski; Garrards Horse and Hound Leading Hobbyist Trainer – David Eurell; Garrards Horse and Hound Leading Trotting Trainer – Blake Fitzpatrick; Garrards Horse and Hound Leading Trotting Driver – Blake Fitzpatrick. Amanda Rando

The Hando family have operated one of the oldest working harness racing studs in Australia - Rosewood Stud - since 1922 so fittingly they were recognised at the Arthur J Gallagher Industry Awards Night in Sydney on Saturday. Awarded the Harness Breeders NSW Outstanding Service to the NSW Breeding Industry honour, this family dynasty have dedicated almost 100 years of contribution to the harness racing industry in NSW. Started by Bill and Ethel Hando, the Stud was passed onto Eric and Dorothy and is now operated by Graeme and Lynn. It will be passed in future years onto Graeme and Lynn’s daughters and only then will the surname Hando not be readily identified with the Stud. Hando’s mare Bronte is recognised as an Australian foundation mare. Many great pacers of today trace back to her from the early 20th Century. Stallions which have been on top of the sires’ ranks in Australia have stood at Rosewood Stud include Peak Hill, Silver Peak, Scottish Brigade, James Scott and Tarport Bill amongst those champions. The Hando draft of yearlings offered each year at the Sydney Sales were always in demand and in 1960 Rosewood Stud sold a colt for an Australasian record of 5,000 pounds. The Hando family also raced countless top class pacers which were multiple Harold Park winners. Peak Hill won the 1941 Sydney Derby which carried 1,000 pounds in prizemoney - a huge amount for that era. Silver Peak an absolute champion won the Victorian AG Hunter Cup. While Scotirra won the Spring Cup at Harold Park in 1965 and 1966 as well as heats of the Inter Dominion. Royal Three was one of the most sensational juveniles ever to race in NSW. The entire Hando family have been on the Committee of the Peak Hill Trotting Club with Bill, Eric and Graeme all serving as President at some stage. The Hando Family were the 2012 Bathurst Gold Crown Honourees and Eric Hando was named a Living Legend of Harness Racing in 2004. Amanda Rando

Harness Racing SA is pleased to announce the finalists for the 2015-16 Horse of the Year awards. This year, to acknowledge the efforts of a larger number of 4YO & Older Horses, both the Trotters and Pacers Categories of this age group have been separated into two categories, one for Mares and one for Entires & Geldings.   The Finalists are: 2YO PACER (FILLY)    2YO PACER (COLT/GELDING) Arm A Princess   Aquaflight Ellen Louise   Emain Macha Miss Mappinga   Glenrae Hanover Our Celebrity   Hez a Chance Rocknroll Baby   Stars of Courage Shania Black   Wroxton Steel         3YO PACER (FILLY)   3YO PACER (COLT/GELDING) Badelaide   Doubledipofheaven Dougs Limousine   Futurist Lily Thesinger   Jumping Jolt Perfectly Written   Oceans Predator Queen Of Sharkz   Official Art Rocknroll Magic   Presidentmach     Rocktellz     4YO+ PACER (MARE)   4YO+ PACER (ENTIRE/GELDING) Bianca Tang   Adam Cartwright Canturi Crest   Cheap Tint Kamwood Dawn   Cillas Boy NZ Lis Tureen NZ   Come On Frank Little Foo                                                                     Global View                                                                         Miasblaze    Lost In Bangkok NZ Our Mischievious Miss NZ    Machtavish NZ Reil Quick   Majestic Lustre NZ Ricks Shadow   Mark Dennis NZ Whats Emma Got   Some Kinda Tactics NZ     2YO TROTTER  3YO TROTTER Down Under Rors  Outback Madge Meluna  Top Of The Rock Soh Twisted   Stairwaytothemoon           4YO+ TROTTER (MARE) 4YO+ TROTTER (ENTIRE/GELDING) Aldebaran Daisy Joekenn Bee A Lassie Lysenko NZ Emilys Vacation Ole Sun NZ Hard Done By Pocketfullofcash Im Princess Sophie Rejuvenation Twiggy Argyle Tommy Kay Variable Miss     Panel members will now cast their votes in each category and the winners will be announced at the function. The panel members will also vote for the SA Horse of the Year, which will come from one of the category winners. Horse of the Year Panel for the 2015-2016 season: Jamie Braidwood Michael Bryant Graham Fischer Ben Harding Lincoln Moore Gary Newton Ben Scadden This year will also be the inaugural presentation of the Jim Hurley Award. The Jim Hurley Award recognises a trainer or driver who has performed consistently at a high level throughout the racing season. It also honours a past great of the sport, Jim Hurley. Nominations are open for the SA Broodmare of the Year for season 2015-16. When nominating a broodmare, the performances of her progeny for the 2015-16 racing season is to be considered. The broodmare must be owned by a resident of SA. After nominations are received, the Horse of the Year panel will be asked to vote for their top choice. Nominations for this award can be made with the Racing Office until COB Monday 7th November 16, either by phone on 8285 0731 or 82850732 or by email to After seeking industry feedback, the venue for the Horse of the Year Function will be held off track at the beautiful Grange Golf Club on Sunday 20th November commencing at 12:30pm. Tickets are available from Harness Racing SA, SA BOTRA and Hopkins Saddlery.  All industry participants are invited to attend this fabulous annual event. The criteria for the 2015-2016 SA Horse of The Year Awards can be found on our website. by David Thuen, Racing Operations Manager

One of Tasmania's most successful trainer-drivers Wayne Rattray has been inducted into the Tasmanian Harness Racing Hall of Fame. Rattray was inducted at a gala awards night at the Country Club Resort in Launceston last Saturday night. The veteran trainer-driver-breeder began the dynasty of the Rattray name in harness racing and his personal achievements sit comfortably alongside the very best the state has produced. He was leading trainer six times from 1984 to 1990 and as a reinsman from 1975 to 1999 he notched 284 winners and along the way collected multiple feature race wins. Some of his feature wins include the 1985 Group 1 Tasmanian Pacing Championship with Napoleon Stone that he partnered to victory and they also won the Tasmanian Oaks, Globe Derby Stakes in the same year. His other Tasmanian Championship winner was Karalta Bay in 1989. One of the best horse's he trained was Cody Maverick that was the state's best 2YO in 2007-08 season winning every feature juvenile event he contested as well as a Breeders Crown semi-final in Victoria. Listen to what Wayne Rattray had to say after being inducted into the Tasmanian harness racing Hall of fame. Peter Staples

From disaster came great harness racing success in 2015-16 for Victorian Breeder of the Year, Bruce Edward of Durham Park. Bruce and wife Vicki’s breeding property was razed shortly before Christmas last year but stayed positive throughout and committed to rebuilding his establishment; his stock certainly gave him good reason to remain positive as the year rolled on with horses like Petacular and Ideal For Real cleaning up on the track. Edward was presented with the Woodlands Park Victorian Breeder of the Year award at the IRT Harness Breeders Victoria awards night at Tabcorp Park Melton on Saturday night, one of several premier awards to recognise achievements in the breeding industry across the season. Long-time stalwarts of the Victorian industry, Dr Martin & Kaye Hartnett, were recognised with the Metro Ian Daff Memorial for tenured service to the industry. The Benstud Pacing Broodmare of the Year was awarded to the Gleeson-Cameron managed mare, Celebrity Ball, dam of Celebrity Guest and Starburst Girl; while the Niota Bloodstock Trotting Broodmare of the Year went to Fred Crews’ mare, Sundonna, dam of the impressive Maori Law and Maori Time. Three sires were recognised for their impressive strike rate of starters to winners – the A Rocknroll Dance @ Alabar Juvenile Sire of the Year was awarded to Alabar’s own Courage Under Fire (51.5%); the Niota Bloodstock Trotting Sire of the Year was presented to Rosehill Farm’s Armbro Variable (74%); while the Victorian Pacing Sire of the Year went to Royal Mattjesty, formerly of the Stallion Station (72.5%). Championship trophies were awarded to 2YO fillies Petacular (Bruce Edward) and Kyvalley Kyrie (Aldebaran Park); 2YO colts & geldings The Storm Inside (Helen Head) which tied with Our Little General (Lauriston Bloodstock), and Illawong Byron (Dr & Mrs Hartnett); 3YO fillies Rocknroll Magic (Peter Gleeson, Bruce & Craig Cameron) and Aldebaran Eve (Aldebaran Park); 3YO colts & geldings, Our Waikiki Beach (The Fusinato family) and Cruisin Around (Pauleen Thomson); and aged horses Frith (Dianne Kelly), Maori Time (Fred Crews), Super Zeck (Shane Murphy) and Lennytheshark (Kevin Newbound Family, represented by Dion Gleeson). Breeders were again recognised for excellence in breeding salable stock, with Greg, John & Kath Fusinato being awarded the APG Yearling Sales High Earner trophy for their $150,000 Somebeachsomewhere colt, and the Terry Forster & Heather Lyttleton combination for their $47,000 Majestic Son colt at the Australasian Premier Trotting Sales. Excellence in recorded mile rates were presented to over 100 horses who achieved an exceptional time across the season. Breeders of Group 1 race winners across the country were also presented with plaques for their efforts in 2015-16.   Available for comment: HBV President,  Mr Shannon Nixon, 0487 764 966 Photos will be available on HBV’s social media streams across the night, and further images will be uploaded in the following week. Information about the awards criteria and selection process, and full results from the night, can be found on the HBV website under ‘Made in Victoria’.

This year's IRT Victorian Breeders Awards Night promises to be a competitive affair with several close contenders for the top harness racing awards, including the Victorian Pacing Broodmare of the Year and Woodlands Stud Victorian Breeder of the Year honours. To be held Saturday, September 24, at Victoria's home of metropolitan trots, Tabcorp Park Melton, the annual awards night is hosted by Harness Breeders Victoria and celebrates the best of the state's breeding industry. The Benstud Pacing Broodmare and Niota Bloodstock Trotting Broodmare of the Year top the card of over 20 categories of awards, including the APG and APTS Yearling Sales High Earner trophies. In a recognition of the strength of trotting bloodstock in Victoria, the Niota Trotting Sire of the Year which was added in 2015 will continue. For the second year running the Victorian Breeder of the Year will be awarded to the member who has had the most successful year, complementing the Metro Printing Ian Daff Memorial Award for long-term service to the industry. The Pryde’s EasiFeeds Pacing Stallion of the Year and the A Rocknroll Dance @ Alabar Juvenile Sire of the Year round out the gold standard. The Time Excellence Pins, Championship Trophies, Vicbred & Group 1 trophies will also be awarded on the night. A hit in 2014, the breeding quiz will be back, pitting table against table to raise funds for life after racing programs. Guests are treated to a welcome drink, finger food and a delicious two-course meal and the opportunity to win extra prizes on the night, all for the ticket price of $69 (or $690 for a table of 10). Bookings close September 19 and will sell out fast – enquiries to or download a booking form from the website or Facebook page. Tabcorp Park are also offering guests a discount on accommodation bookings – contact them directly for details. For more information and to book your ticket at the breeders’ awards night, click here. Harness Racing Victoria

The trots’ biggest awards night will be given its biggest showcase on November 6 when the Gordon Rothacker Medal is staged at Palladium at the Crown. Tickets are now on sale for Harness Racing Victoria’s (HRV) celebration of its outstanding performers and contributors, with offerings including considerable early bird and group booking discounts. CLICK HERE FOR MORE DETAILS AND TO BOOK The night will be an opportunity to laud those who have separated themselves from the pack, with presentations including the Horse of the Year awards, country club awards and state and metropolitan premierships. HRV Chairman Dale Monteith said it was also a chance to honour those often behind the scenes through the Gordon Rothacker Medal and Pearl Kelly Award. “The Gordon Rothacker Medal night is a fantastic opportunity to laud our participants who have toiled so hard throughout the season and achieved so much, as well as shining a light on the often unsung heroes of the trots,” Mr Monteith said. “It’s a chance for participants, owners, breeders and trots fans to come together and celebrate all that is great about this sport. I encourage all industry participants to make the night as it will be special. The fact it will be staged at the Crown for the first time, the state’s centre for major events, will only further add to the prestige of the night and I’m looking forward to a great night of celebration, dining and entertainment.” In addition to a three-course meal, beer, wine and soft drink, the night will feature live music among its entertainment, and will be hosted by TAB media manager Adam Hamilton and commentator Michael Guerin. Those that book before October 1 will receive the early bird discount price of $130, a saving of $20, or a table of 10 can be booked for $1000. For tickets and more details click here.  Michael Howard (HRV Media/Communications Co-Ordinator)

After a harness racing season of star-studded triumphs it would be a two-year-old maiden who would ultimately see Chris Alford anointed the SBG Accountants Metropolitan Drivers’ Premiership, winning by one from Gavin Lang. The Australian season finished tonight the 31st of August. The veteran reinsmen’s season long to and fro proved captivating to the last race, with Alford and Lang entering Wednesday night’s Breeders Crown silver races tied at 47 wins apiece. With a win on Kheiron in the night’s opening race, the Aldebaran Park Breeders Crown two-year-old silver trot, Alford took his tally to 48 and that would be enough. “Metro races aren’t easy to come by, it’s a huge thrill,” Alford said. “A whole year of work goes into it. You can’t win these things unless you’ve got great people to drive for and great horses to drive. “I only take 10 per cent of the credit because I drive horses mostly trained by other people and I just put the polish on the finished product and happy I can do the job.” Making it all the more memorable was the on-going showdown with Lang, a regular fixture of the premiership race. Alford now leads the premiership ledger 12-5, with both having added a notch this time last year when Lang won the season’s final race to draw level with Alford, who finished second in the deciding race, beaten only a neck. It’s a familiar tale. “Way back when, I can’t even remember how many years, we were in one (premiership race) at Moonee Valley,” Alford said. “We started the day together, I think we won seven of the nine races together, it was me, him, me, him, me, him and then I got up and beat him in the last race. “It was ironic last year that he got up and dead heated in the last race with me when he beat me by a head.” This year the title looked to be heading Lang’s way, with Greg Sugars to place a close third. “On Friday I had two drives, not even a metro one, (Gavin) had Hectorjayjay, which looked over the line,” Alford said. “Then, of course, Sunday it looked like he had a lot of good chances. Mine were pretty good chances in the Breeders Crown without being good things, and then we come to tonight level and both our drives looked pretty fair on paper. Thankfully mine won in the first one. “We compete hard on the track but when we are back in the drivers’ room it’s just back to normal. We’ll have a beer if we are out and about, it’s just good healthy sportsmanship.” Alford also won the Melton Saddlery State Drivers’ Premiership, while Emma Stewart did the training double, winning the Renown Silverware State Trainers’ Premiership and the Taylors Metropolitan Trainers’ Premiership. For the third straight year Jason Lee won the Alabar Concession Drivers’ Premiership. FOR THE PREMIERSHIPS TOP 10 CLICK HERE Michael Howard (HRV Media/Communications Co-Ordinator)

Roy D. Davis, harness racing owner of back-to-back Little Brown Jug champions, will be honored as the 2016 Joseph Neville Memorial Award winner by the Delaware County Fair. Mr. Davis was the founder of "Team Spur," which included Barberry Spur and Jaguar Spur, who won the 1986 and 1987 Little Brown Jug, respectively. During a five year period in the 1980's, Mr. Davis won the $1.3 million Governor's Cup Final (Barberry Spur - 1985), a pair of Breeders Crown titles (Kentucky Spur - 1988 and Esquire Spur - 1989), the Adios Pace (Barberry Spur - 1986), the Cane Pace (Barberry Spur - 1986), the Yonkers Trot (Gunslinger Spur - 1986), the William Haughton Memorial Pace (Jaguar Spur - 1988) and the Tattersalls Pace (Jaguar Spur - 1987). Mr. Davis was an active owner for more than six decades and had a longstanding relationship with trainer Dick Stillings. The "Spur" suffix, inspired by an English soccer team, the Tottenham Hotspurs, also reflected Mr. Davis's Texas heritage. He was a part of the ownership group of the Meadows Racetrack in the 1980s and established the Meadows Standardbred Owners Association. He was enshrined into the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame in 1978. Mr. Davis was a longtime member of the Little Brown Jug and Hambletonian Societies and was a former director of the United States Trotting Association. Mr. Davis died June 16, 2015 at the age of 85. He is survived by his sons; Roy, Jr. and Richard. Jay Wolf  

The 2016 Harness Racing New South Wales Industry Awards Night is just around the corner and the nominees for the Tabcorp Carnival of Cups Awards have been confirmed. With a number of new Awards to be handed out at the October 29 function at Sheraton on the Park, Sydney, the HRNSW Board recently determined the following: Best Club with a feature race to a maximum of $50,000 (but no less than $25,001) The nominations are: Bathurst, Eugowra, Maitland and Young. Best Club with a feature race to a maximum of $25,000 (but no less than $14,001) The nominations are: Albury, Cootamundra, Parkes and Tamworth. Best Club with a feature race to a maximum of $14,000 (but no less than $10,001) The nominations are: Broken Hill, Junee, Temora, and West Wyalong. Best Club with a feature race to a maximum of not more than $10,000 The nominations are: Coolamon, Cowra, Griffith and Peak Hill. Best Community Engagement Club The nominations are: Dubbo, Eugowra, Goulburn and Temora. Best Fraternity Engagement Club The nominations are: Junee, Leeton and West Wyalong. Best New Innovation Club The nominations are: Goulburn, Temora and West Wyalong. Categories for other Awards are yet to be determined. Tickets for the Awards Night are available for purchase - for more information please contact Kate Dumesny on (02) 9722 6672 or Date: Saturday October 29, 2016 Location: Sheraton on the Park, Sydney   AMANDA RANDO

81 to 96 of 2025