John Tapp announced on tonight’s Sky Racing In the Gig episode that he will retire from racing broadcasting in June this year. Tapp’s last official hosting role will be on the season finale of In the Gig almost 50 years to the day after his career started at 2GB. Tapp has been one of the iconic voices of Australian racing and called more than 50,000 races over his career with his last race call in 1998. Tapp has held various hosting roles at Sky Racing since. Tapp said he will miss sharing his love of racing with the Sky audience. “Talking racing has been an absolutely joy and the people involved in racing – you can’t go past them,” Tapp said. “I can’t pinpoint a career highlight. There are so many special horses, races, trainers, jockeys and harness drivers. Every day in racing is like a new frontier and every race has its own story.” Tapp said he will continue to train harness horses in his retirement from broadcasting. “I don’t want to have too many horses, just enough that I can be hands on,” he said. “Apart from that, I will still be keenly watching everything that is happening in racing and will remain an avid Sky Racing viewer.” Tabcorp Chief Operating Officer Wagering and Media, Craig Nugent said Tapp will be dearly missed at Sky Racing. “John Tapp is a true Australian racing legend and Sky Racing is proud to have been part of his illustrious 50-year career,” Nugent said. “I wish John all the best in his retirement. It has been a privilege for the team at Sky to have worked with him.” Tapp was honoured with an Order of Australia Medal in 1996 “for service to horse sports as a national and international racecaller, and to charitable organisations as an organiser and compere of fundraising events” and was bestowed the title of Australia Post Australian Legend in 2007 when he was immortalised in a stamp series. Sky is producing a special tribute to celebrate John Tapp’s racing and media career for broadcast during his final week on-air. His last In the Gig episode will air on Sky Racing on June 16. Rebecca Ludbrook Tabcorp
Friday night @ Tabcorp Park Nevele R Stud Victoria Oaks heats @ 6pm, 8.30pm and 9.30pm Australian Pacing Gold 2YO Fillies heats @ 10pm and 11.05pm Harness Breeders (Vic) Ian Daff Memorial @ 8pm Saturday night @ Mildura Park Douglas Printing Mildura Pacing Cup Final @ 9pm Mark Gurry & Associates Cup Final @ 8pm Tankard Dental Mildura Guineas @ 8.30pm Get the full fields and form via harness.org.au - FEATURE OF THE WEEK - PARK DOUGLAS PRINTING MILDURA PACING CUP FINAL 2600 metres -- mobile start -- $50,275 -- Group 2 1: HOTASEL Trainer: Murray Jardine Driver: Simon Jardine Form comment: Ouyen gelding who qualified for the Cup with a third placing behind Major Crocker and Cut For An Ace in the heat. Drawn for a soft run and could sneak a place with a bit of luck in transit. 2: MAJOR CROCKER Trainer: Vince Vallelonga Driver: Greg Sugars Form comment: Super four-year-old who won his heat by a head over Cut For An Ace. Won last year's 3YO Breeders Crown Final and also swept the Southern Cross Series in South Australia. Drawn to get the pegs and he's the main danger to Arden Rooney for mine. Can he beat the Hunter Cup champ though? Greg Sugars says they're not going out to run second! 3: BEACHSTAR Trainer: Joe Costa Driver: John Justice Form comment: Won back-to-back races in February and loves Mildura. Should get a nice run here from the good barrier and did defeat Hotasel recently. Place hope. 4: OUR WALDEN BURY (EM1) Trainer: Robert Hyder Driver: Damian Wilson Form comment: He's an honest gelding but form isn't good enough to be winning here if he does gain a start. 5: CUT FOR AN ACE Trainer: Adam Kelly Driver: Zac Phillips Form comment: Big run in the heat to finish a close-up second to Major Crocker. Ultra-consistent seven-year-old who always seems to be around the mark. 6: CHILLI PALMER Trainer: Dean Braun Driver: Gavin Lang Form comment: Sat without cover for the last lap and a half in his heat when third behind Arden Rooney and Lets Elope. Sit-sprint specialist, but seems to have a few extra strings to his bow of late - having sat without cover to win the Gawler Cup recently. He's better than his heat third would suggest and with luck in running he's a knockout chance despite the wide alley. 7: LETS ELOPE Trainer: Brent Lilley Driver: Anthony Butt Form comment: Showed plenty of early speed in the heat and finished second to Arden Rooney. Previous second to Hectorjayjay is good form and stable confident they've got him back to his best. Has to be considered right in the mix. 8: SAINT FLASH Trainer: Glenn Douglas Driver: Ellen Tormey Form comment: Has been solid enough of late but is likely to find this a pretty tough task from the back row. 9: UNCLE WINGNUT Trainer: Joe Costa Driver: Michael Bellman Form comment: Scored a rock-solid win in the Ouyen Cup two runs back and then last time out sat outside the leader and battled away gamely behind Major Crocker. With the right run he's capable of running a mighty race. Include. 10: ARDEN ROONEY Trainer: Kerryn Manning Driver: Kerryn Manning Form comment: Brilliant gelding who has won six straight races, including the Hunter Cup and cups at Terang and Geelong. He's the class runner of the field and on the strength of his form if he's 100 per cent then he'll win. 11: FRANCO LEDGER Trainer: Geoff Webster Driver: Geoff Webster Form comment: Just racing a shade below what we know he can produce. Didn't fire in his heat at his first go at Mildura. It's a track that you're either suited to or you're not. But you don't write anyone off after just one average effort. This fella won a Group 1 three starts back and if he produces the lightning sprint that carried him to second place in the Hunter Cup then look out when the heat is on! Tips: 10 Arden Rooney, 2 Major Crocker, 11 Franco Ledger, 6 Chilli Palmer. (By: Cody Winnell) BIG6 Jackpot TONIGHT @ Melton Get your mates together and have a crack at landing the BIG6 tonight at Tabcorp Park Melton. The TAB is pumping $20,000 into the BIG6 pool (Races 3-8) with the first leg under way at 7pm. So get trackside, visit your local TAB outlet, visit the TAB website or bet on your TAB app. TAB Trots/AFL Special: Round 2 If Adam Cooney kicks one goal or more against Hawthorn this Sunday and Arden Rooney wins the Mildura Pacing Cup on Saturday night, punters who back the Rooney and Cooney TAB Trots/AFL Special will collect! The Tab has put up $2.50 about the double, a great price given many form experts believe Arden Rooney will start long odds-on on Saturday night and Cooney jagged three goals first-up for the Bombers against Sydney last weekend. Access the special online by clicking here, have a crack at the track, at your local TAB outlet or via the TAB app. Have a crack on track this weekend, at your local TAB outlet, online at tab.com.au or on your TAB app. #Girls #Trots #Oaks #APG The fastest fillies in the trots will clash tonight at Tabcorp Park Melton. Three heats of the Nevele R Stud Victoria Oaks will pit the best three-year-old girls against one another over 2240m, all vying for a start in the Victoria Oaks final on April 18. And two heats of the rich Australian Pacing Gold 2YO Fillies series will also be decided, while the Harness Breeders (Vic) Ian Daff Memorial will feature open-age female pacers over the 1720-metre short-course trip. READ THE FULL STORY
Those who backed Victorian harness racing star Lennytheshark when Inter Dominion markets first opened will be happy with themselves. A stylish winner of his heat at Tabcorp Park Melton last night, Lennytheshark is expected to play a major role in the Final. The $750,000 TAB.com.au decider is scheduled to be run at Menangle on March 1. Posted at $8 on the original TAB Fixed Odds Market, the David Aiken-trained stallion drifted to $10 before his racing return at Shepparton on January 24. Lennytheshark is now the second elect at $3. Defending champion Beautide is listed at $2.10 in his bid to become just the sixth pacer to retain his title. Hondo Grattan was the ground breaker in 1973 and ’74, followed by Gammalite in ’83 and ’84, Our Sir Vancelot in 1997, ’98 and ’99, Blacks A Fake in 2006, ’07 and ’08 and Im Themightyquinn in 2011, ’12 and ’13. Opening at $4.20, Beautide drifted to $6 before dropping to $3.40 when Christen Me was scratched from the series before last night’s Supplementary heat at Menangle. Following his effortless qualifier victory, Beautide was cut to $2.40, with solid support seeing his quote dropped to $2.10. TAB’s Adam Hamilton believes a favourable draw could see the son of Bettors Delight start an odds-on favourite. “I think he’ll continue to shorter between now and the draw on Saturday night,” Hamilton said. “He’ll start odds-on regardless of draw, but could be as short as $1.60, or even $1.50, with an ideal barrier. “He looked right back to his best in the heat, will be even better for just his second run in 11 weeks and the step from 2400 to 3009 metres in the Final suits him far better than any of his rivals.” The shortest-priced favourite in recent times was Elsu, which paid a meagre $1.55 in 2005. PAUL COURTS
TAB has released its harness racing markets and prices for the Inter Dominion heats which will be run throughout Australia on Saturday night. Spaced 15 minutes apart, the Victorian heat at Tabcorp Park Melton will kick-start proceedings at 8:30pm, followed by the first of two qualifiers from Tabcorp Park Menangle. Albion Park in Queensland, Menangle and Western Australia’s Gloucester Park will round out the heats. TAB.com.au Inter Dominion favourite Christen Me will contest the second heat at Menangle and has installed a hot $1.75 favourite in front of fellow Kiwi, Terror To Love at $3.80. Defending champion Beautide has opened up $2.10 in his heat, while in the Victorian qualifier, Lennytheshark ($1.75) and Guaranteed ($3.40) dominate the market. Guaranteed has fared better with the draw and will begin from the pole, with noted speedster Lennytheshark to come from three. Avonnova ($1.30) and David Hercules ($1.65) are the standout picks in the Brisbane and Perth heats. The finalists will be determined shortly after the running of the Gloucester Park heat. The TAB.com.au Inter Dominion Final is scheduled to be conducted at Tabcorp Park Menangle on March 1. VIC Inter Dom Heat– TAB Fixed Odds Lennytheshark $1.75 Guaranteed $3.40 Franco Ledger $6.00 Chilli Palmer $7.50 Beauty Secret $21 Im Corzin Terror $21 Others from $35 NSW Inter Dom Heat (1) – TAB Fixed Odds Beautide $2.10 Suave Stuey Lombo $3.00 For A Reason $7.00 Lochinver $10 Seel N Print $10 Monifieth $16 Teo Enteo $18 Others from $35 QLD Inter Dom Heat – TAB Fixed Odds Avonnova $1.30 Forever Gold $4.50 My Jellignite $6.50 Brigadier Bronski $17 Others from $31 NSW Inter Dom Heat (2) – TAB Fixed Odds Christen Me $1.75 Terror To Love $3.80 Easy On The Eye $6.00 Bit Of A Legend $7.00 Blazin N Cullen $21 Ultimate Art $21 Others from $31 WA Inter Dom Heat – TAB Fixed Odds David Hercules $1.65 Pacific Warrior $4.50 Bettors Fire $6.50 Dynamite Dude $8.00 Hokonui Ben $14 Shardons Rocket $14 Others from $26 TAB.com.au Inter Dominion Winner – TAB Fixed Odds Christen Me $4.00 Beautide $4.80 Lennytheshark $4.80 Guaranteed $7.00 Terror To Love $10 For A Reason $14 Franco Ledger $16 Avonnova $21 David Hercules $21 Bit Of A Legend $31 Easy On The Eye $31 Seel N Print $31 Suave Stuey Lombo $31 Others from $35
Harness racing’s free-legged star Avonnova appears certain to qualify for the TAB.com.au Inter Dominion Final. A brilliant beginner, Avonnova has drawn the pole in Saturday night’s heat at Albion Park, which should see the Ian Gurney-trained pacer lead throughout. The $750,000 decider is scheduled to be run at Tabcorp Park Menangle on March 1, with heats being conducted throughout Australia this weekend. Only the winner of the Queensland qualifier will be guaranteed a berth in the time-honoured Final. Successful at seven of his nine starts this season, Avonnova’s only home state defeat this season was a gutsy second behind New South Wales visitor For A Reason in the Queensland Pacing Championship last October. Kept fresh since his victory at Menangle a fortnight ago, the son of Art Major has been installed a prohibitive $1.30 favourite as he looks to stretch his winning sequence to five. An eye-catching winner at Albion Park last Saturday night, classy mare Forever Gold shapes as Avonnova’s main danger after drawing alongside the gelding. Racing in consistent form this campaign, the daughter of Famous Forever is likely to be sent forward early in hope of opening a gap and being slotted onto the pegs behind the leader. PAUL COURTS
The fields for the five Qualifying Heats of the 2015 TAB.COM.AU Inter Dominion harness racing series are as follows; Heat 1 Tabcorp Park Melton AEDT 8:30pm TAB.COM.AU Inter Dominion Qualifying Heat - 2240 metres # HORSE TRAINER DRIVER 1 Guaranteed Emma Stewart Gavin Lang 2 Wartime Sweetheart NZ David Aiken Nathan Jack 3 Lennytheshark David Aiken Chris Alford 4 Flaming Flutter NZ Geoff Webster Geoff Webster 5 Im Corzin Terror NZ Amanda Grieve Anthony Butt 6 Cold Major David Aiken Joshua Aiken (C) 7 Smudge Bromac NZ David Aiken Nathan Jack 8 Franco Ledger NZ Geoff Webster Geoff Webster 9 Chilli Palmer NZ Amanda Grieve Chris Alford 10 Beauty Secret Emma Stewart Gavin Lang 11 Bellas Delight (EM1) Kari Males Greg Sugars Heat 2 Tabcorp Park Menangle AEDT 8:45pm TAB.COM.AU Inter Dominion Qualifying Heat - 2400 metres # HORSE TRAINER DRIVER 1 Lochinver NZ Ashlee Siejka Ashlee Siejka 2 Gaius Caesar NZ (EM2) Darren Binskin Darren Binskin 3 Monifieth NZ John McCarthy John McCarthy 4 Living Lord NZ (EM1) Darren McCall Darren McCall 5 Beautide James Rattray James Rattray 6 Suave Stuey Lombo Shane Tritton Lauren Panella (C) 7 Chariot King John Tapp Jim Douglass 8 Bettor Bet Black Darren McCall Darren McCall 9 Seel N Print NZ Todd McCarthy Todd McCarthy (C) 10 Mark Dennis NZ Shane Tritton Blake Fitzpatrick 11 For A Reason Belinda McCarthy Luke McCarthy 12 Teo Enteo Darren Hancock Darren Hancock Heat 3 Albion Park local time 8:00pm AEDT 9:00pm Sky Racing Inter Dominion Qualifying Heat - 2138 metres # HORSE TRAINER DRIVER 1 Avonnova Ian Gurney Shane Graham 2 Forever Gold Darren Weeks Darren Weeks 3 Brigadier Bronski Mick Grant Adam Sanderson (C) 4 Funny Boy NZ Ken Rattray Nathan Dawson 5 Majestic Major NZ Grant Dixon Grant Dixon 6 American Legend Shannon Price Brad Cowen 7 Our Pacquiao NZ Grant Dixon Grant Dixon 8 My Jellignite NZ Shane Sanderson Pete McMullen 9 Majestic Mach Grant Dixon Grant Dixon 10 Bettor Draw Narissa McMullen Narissa McMullen 11 Beau Dandy (EM1) Jim Morris Paul Morris Heat 4 Tabcorp Park Menangle AEDT 9:15pm TAB.COM.AU Inter Dominion Qualifying (NSW Supplementary) Heat - 2400 metres # HORSE TRAINER DRIVER 1 Ultimate Art Michael Formosa Michael Formosa 2 Saucy Legend NZ Shane Tritton Lauren Panella (C) 3 Living Lord NZ (EM1) Darren McCall Darren McCall 4 Gaius Caesar NZ (EM2) Darren Binskin Darren Binskin 5 Easy On The Eye NZ Shane Tritton Lauren Panella (C) 6 Bit Of A Legend NZ Cran Dalgety Dexter Dunn 7 Pub Blitz Paul Fitzpatrick Gavin Fitzpatrick 8 Terror To Love NZ Graham Court Blake Fitzpatrick 9 Freyberg NZ Kevin Pizzuto Kevin Pizzuto 10 Christen Me NZ Cran Dalgety Dexter Dunn 11 Come On Frank Darren Billinger Darren Billinger 12 Blazin N Cullen NZ John McCarthy John McCarthy Heat 5 Gloucester Park local time 6:30pm AEDT 9:30pm Sky Racing Inter Dominion Qualifying Heat - 2536 metres # HORSE TRAINER DRIVER 1 Mach Banner NZ Greg and Skye Bond Ryan Warwick 2 Pacific Warrior NZ Ray Williams 3 Our Blackbird NZ Ross Olivieri Chris Voak 4 Our Major Mark NZ Greg and Skye Bond Colin Brown 5 Hokonui Ben NZ Aldo Cortopassi Aldo Cortopassi 6 Wrongly Accused (EM1) Tony Svilicich 7 Crombie Gary Elson Nathan Turvey 8 Dynamite Dude Ross Olivieri Chris Lewis 9 Shardons Rocket NZ Tony Svilicich 10 David Hercules David Thompson Morgan Woodley 11 Bettors Fire NZ Kyle Harper Kyle Harper Following an assessment of the TAB.COM.AU Inter Dominion 2015 heats, the following rankings have been allotted to each heat for places in the Grand Final to be conducted at TABCORP Park Menangle on Sunday 1 March 2015. Heat 1: VIC Tabcorp Park Melton First 3 Heat 2: NSW Tabcorp Park Menangle First 4 Heat 3: Albion Park Winner Only Heat 4: NSW Supplementary Tabcorp Park Menangle First 3 Heat 5: Gloucester Park Winner Only In accordance with the conditions positions 13 & 14 will be decided as Wildcards.
TAB have released updated Fixed Odds markets for two of harness racing’s biggest events – A G Hunter Cup and Inter Dominion. There have been several ‘movers’ following last Saturday night’s Victoria Cup at Tabcorp Park Melton, with Christen Me now the favourite for both features. A brilliant winner of last weekend’s Cup, Christen Me is at $3.60 – in from $6 – to defend his Hunter Cup title in five days time. Brilliant Kiwi mare Adore Me is at $3.60 – also in from $6 – with Guaranteed and Terror To Love staying firm at $5. Christen Me has also come in from $6 to $4 to head the Inter Dominion table. Australasia’s ‘Holy Grail’, the Inter Dominion Final is scheduled to be run at Menangle on March 1, with heats on February 14. Defending champion Beautide has drifted from $4.20 to $5 following his disappointing Cup performance. Unplaced at his first run for nine weeks, Beautide was stood down by stewards pending a vet’s examination after he returned to scale “making a respiratory noise”. Exciting Victorian campaigner Guaranteed shares second billing at $5. One noted mover is Western Australian pacer David Hercules, which has been cut from $21 to $13. PAUL COURTS HUNTER CUP $3.60 Christen Me $3.80 Adore Me $5 Guaranteed $5 Terror To Love $14 Restrepo $18 Franco Ledger $18 Philadelphia Man $21 Arden Rooney $21 Bit Of A Legend $21 For A Reason $26 Im Corzin Terror $31 Flaming Flutter INTER DOMINION $4 Christen Me $5 Beautide $5 Guaranteed $6.50 Philadelphia Man $7.50 Terror To Love $10 Lennytheshark $13 David Hercules $14 Restrepo $16 For A Reason $18 Our Jimmy Johnstone $21 Avonnova $21 Im Corzin Terror $26 Bit Of A Legend, Franco Ledger
If you build it, they will come... Harness Racing Victoria have hit a home run, not too dissimilar to one of the homers hit by the baseballers in the legendary Kevin Costner movie involving cornfields and ghosts, by changing the summer calendar and launching the TAB Summer of Glory carnival. The TAB Victoria Cup field tonight is packed with stars and more than one trots pundit believes it to be the greatest and most competitive Victoria Cup field that's been seen in the modern era. TAB VICTORIA CUP Saturday night, January 31. Group 1, 2240m, mobile start. 9.32pm 1: LENNYTHESHARK ($9) “He’s drawn perfectly. He’s second-up from a spell and ran a terrific race first-up in the Shepparton Cup. You don’t want them at 100 per cent first-up and he’ll improve significantly with that run under his belt. Chris (Alford) has options from the draw, so we’ll leave that up to him. Philadelphia Man got away from him at the turn at Shepparton and on the line we were on his wheel.” - David Aiken (trainer) 2: FRANCO LEDGER ($21) “He’s great, we’re really happy with him. He’s in the zone at the moment and we’re drawn well. I’d be really happy to be three back the pegs in the run, but one-out and three-back would be fine too. The quicker they go up front the better it’ll be for us.” - Geoff Webster (trainer/driver) 3: BEAUTIDE ($3.2) “Really happy with how he’s going. He’s trained well and we’re pretty confident he’s better than he’s been all season. He’s had some good trials and has got a good draw. He’ll come out quick; he’s got really good gate speed.” - James Rattray (trainer/driver) 4: PHILADELPHIA MAN ($6) “He was a little bit fresh at Shepparton and he’ll strip fitter for the run. He’s worked terrific during the week. I think he brought himself undone a bit by over-racing last week. I’m happy with gate four. We can run our own race.” - Emma Stewart (trainer) 5: IM CORZIN TERROR ($81) “We’re really happy with his work. The draw’s a bit unfortunate; we’d like to swap his draw with Chilli’s. Some people are putting him down but I think he’s the forgotten horse. You look at his run at Kilmore in the Cup when he gave Guaranteed a start and was running on strongly for second.” - Amanda Grieve (trainer) 6: CHRISTEN ME ($6) “They will fly the gate and from our barrier we are half in and half out, so Dexter will most likely come out and sit in the middle of the track until the dust settles. From then on we are aiming to position up in the front half of the field rather than the back half.” - Cran Dalgety (trainer) 7: TERROR TO LOVE ($16) “We’re getting used to these barrier draws now! It is what it is … I think he’ll come into it later on. It’s the first of a lot of big races coming up. Thinking he’ll just go back and try to work into it at the right time. Everyone sort of forgets how good a sprint he’s got when he’s saved for one go.” - Paul Court (co-trainer) 8: CHILLI PALMER (1EM) ($51) “Absolutely thrilled with Chilli, we’ve just got to hope he gets a start. We’re very happy with how he’s come back.” - Amanda Grieve (trainer) 9: DAVID HERCULES ($41) “I give him a huge chance. We’re not going to have to do half the work a few of the others will have to do. He’s apparently travelled very well.” - David Thompson (trainer) 10: GUARANTEED ($4.8) “His form’s been terrific and he’s come through every run better and better. His work has been terrific.” - Emma Stewart (trainer) 11: FOR A REASON ($41) “We were disappointed he pulled at Horsham (in the Cup) and then off 30m with those sectionals last week he had no hope. He’s come on good since that run and he’ll benefit from it. This is a tougher Victoria Cup than last year though. This is probably the best cup field in years. We’ll drive him like last year; come with one run. We’d be thrilled if he ran a place.” - Luke McCarthy (driver) 12: ADORE ME ($10) “Adore Me is training very well and we’re pretty excited going into the Victoria Cup. She has travelled really well and it’s a pleasure to be involved with her.” - Duane Marfisi (stable assistant with Mark Purdon) 13: RESTREPO ($41) “We’re hoping he’s getting home well and finishing it off strongly. The draw makes it a bit tricky.” - Emma Stewart (trainer) ACCESS THE MARKET FOR THE TAB VICTORIA CUP $200,000 FIRST 4 JACKPOT Tomorrow night's TAB Victoria Cup will carry a $200,000 First 4 pool guarantee. There is also a special bonus offer for TAB customers this weekend. Have a fixed odds win bet on the Group 1 TAB Victoria Cup or the Group 1 Hunter Cup, with your TAB account or TAB rewards card, and if your horse runs second or third, you'll score a Bonus Bet up to $50 or equivalent TAB Rewards points. Bet at the track, your local TAB outlet, via the TAB smart phone app or online at tab.com.au WIN A $50 TAB VOUCHER Here’s your chance to win a $50 TAB Voucher. To enter, tell us who you think will win the TAB Victoria Cup on Saturday night. All entrants that pick the winner will go into a random draw and whichever lucky entrant is drawn, wins the $50 TAB Voucher! Entries must be in by no later than 8:30pm on Saturday night 31 January. Must be over 18 years of age to enter. Email firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject WIN. The winner will be notified via email on Tuesday.
Master reinsman Gavin Lang is the favourite to be the winning Inter Dominion driver. In the latest TAB ‘novelty market’ for the time-honoured Championship, Lang is at $3.80 to secure the Final, which could shape as ‘overs’ considering the horseflesh Lang has at his disposal. Lang is the main stable driver for trainer Emma Stewart, who has Guaranteed, Philadelphia Man and Restrepo engaged in the prestigious series. The TAB.com.au Inter Dominion Final is scheduled to be run at Tabcorp Park Menangle on March 1. Lang is yet to enjoy victory in the Pacers’ Final, but has won three Trotters’ Finals – scoring with True Roman in 1988, Game Bid 2002 and Sumthingaboutmaori in ’04. “Our bookies have installed Gavin as favourite to secure one of the few remaining majors that he has yet to win,” Georgiou said. “Lang has been known as one of the best drivers of the last generation and still commands respect among his much younger rivals. “It would be fitting if he could finally lift an Inter Dominion Pacing Grand trophy.” PAUL COURTS Inter Dominion Winning Driver Gavin Lang $3.80 James Rattray $4 Dexter Dunn $5 Ricky May $7 Any Other Driver $10 Chris Alford $10 Luke McCarthy $10 Grant Dixon $21 Lauren Panella $21 Shane Graham $21
Despite several setbacks and a lack of racing, Beautide has been installed favourite for what promises to be one of the most exciting harness racing events of the season – Saturday night’s Victoria Cup. After drawing ideally in barrier three, Beautide has been posted at $3 by TAB.com.au. Fourth behind For A Reason in last year’s edition, Beautide heads the market in front of stablemates Guaranteed and Philadelphia Man, which are on $5. Beautide hasn’t raced since finishing second to Christen Me in the Miracle Mile last November. Others under double figures are Christen Me ($6.50) and Lennytheshark ($9). “The TAB Victoria Cup promises to be a race for the ages,” TAB’s Andrew Georgiou said. “Beautide is the favourite, but hasn’t raced since his brave second in the Miracle Mile back in November. “The draw certainly paves the way for trainer-driver James Rattray to slot him into a position close to the speed.” Within moments of yesterday’s barrier draw, a $3000 wager was placed on Beautide at $3.8. After opening at $51, comeback pacer Lennytheshark has been a major mover and is on the fourth line of betting at $9. Lennytheshark was impressive when third in last Saturday night’s Shepparton Cup in his first run since July. Lennytheshark has drawn perfectly in barrier one for trainer David Aiken. PAUL COURTS TAB Victoria Cup – Fixed Odds market Beautide $3.00 Guaranteed $5 Philadelphia Man $5 Christen Me $6.50 Lennytheshark $9 Adore Me $12 Terror To Love $14 Franco Ledger $21 Chilli Palmer (1em) $41 David Hercules $41 For A Reason $41 Restrepo $41 Im Corzin Terror $71
Just hours after nominations for harness racing’s pinnacle event – Inter Dominion – were released, TAB has posted its first Fixed Odds Market. Of the 150 pacers from across Australasia nominated for the time-honoured series, defending champion Beautide has been installed the early favourite. Despite his last-start defeat in the Miracle Mile, Beautide is listed at $4.20 in his bid to become just the sixth pacer to retain his title. Hondo Grattan was the ground breaker in 1973 and ’74, followed by Gammalite in ’83 and ’84, Our Sir Vancelot in 1997, ’98 and ’99, Blacks A Fake in 2006, ’07 and ’08 and Im Themightyquinn in 2011, ’12 and ’13. Miracle Mile winner Christen Me and boom Victorian, Guaranteed, are next in line at $5.50. Terror To Love at $7, Lennytheshark at $8 and Adore Me at $9.50 are the only other nominees under double figures. The Inter Dominion is scheduled to be run at Tabcorp Park Menangle on March 1, 2015 PAUL COURTS TAB FIXED ODDS: Beautide $ 4.20 Christen Me NZ $ 5.50 Guaranteed $ 5.50 Terror To Love NZ $ 7.00 Lennytheshark $ 8.00 Adore Me NZ $ 9.50 For A Reason $ 11.00 Restrepo $ 11.00 Philadelphia Man $ 12.00 Suave Stuey Lombo $ 14.00 Billies A Star NZ $ 18.00 Franco Nelson NZ $ 18.00 Bit Of A Legend NZ $ 21.00 David Hercules $ 21.00 Easy On The Eye NZ $ 21.00 Mach Beauty $ 21.00 Avonnova $ 26.00 Elios NZ $ 26.00 Keayang Steamer $ 26.00 Macho Comacho NZ $ 26.00 Border Control NZ $ 41.00 Franco Ledger NZ $ 41.00 Im Corzin Terror NZ $ 41.00 Our Jimmy Johnstone NZ $ 41.00 Abettorpunt $ 51.00 Bettors Fire NZ $ 51.00 Chancellor Cullen NZ $ 51.00 Jivin Cullen NZ $ 51.00 Johny Rock USA $ 51.00 Keayang Cullen $ 51.00 Majestic Mach $ 51.00 Our Hi Jinx NZ $ 51.00 Courage To Rule NZ $ 61.00 Devendra $ 61.00 Elusive Chick NZ $ 61.00 Field Officer NZ $ 61.00 Flaming Flutter NZ $ 61.00 Majestic Major NZ $ 61.00 Maximan NZ $ 61.00 Seel N Print NZ $ 61.00 Arden Rooney NZ $ 81.00 Beauty Secret $ 81.00 Bettor Offer NZ $ 81.00 Bitobliss $ 81.00 Blazin N Cullen NZ $ 81.00 Devil Dodger NZ $ 81.00 Iam Mr Brightside NZ $ 81.00 Mach Alert NZ $ 81.00 Macha NZ $ 81.00 Terrorway NZ $ 81.00 Bellas Delight $ 101.00 Bettor Bet Black $ 101.00 Chariot King $ 101.00 Chilli Palmer NZ $ 101.00 Forever Gold $ 101.00 Lochinver NZ $ 101.00 Magical Telf NZ $ 101.00 Monifieth NZ $ 101.00 Saveapatrol NZ $ 101.00 Supreme Mach NZ $ 101.00 Teo Enteo $ 101.00 Gaius Caesar NZ $ 126.00 Whozideawasthis NZ $ 126.00 American Legend $ 151.00 Ardghal NZ $ 151.00 Aspiring Artist $ 151.00 Brigadier Bronski $ 151.00 Caesars Folly NZ $ 151.00 Fearless Leader NZ $ 151.00 Heza Thrill NZ $ 151.00 Hokonui Ben NZ $ 151.00 In The Perfect Storm NZ $ 151.00 Living Lord NZ $ 151.00 Mark Dennis $ 151.00 Mysta Magical Mach NZ $ 151.00 Our Major Mark NZ $ 151.00 Pemberton Shard NZ $ 151.00 Rule Like A King NZ $ 151.00 Sensational Gabby $ 151.00 Terror Time $ 151.00 Christian Ruler NZ $ 201.00 Cold Major $ 201.00 Condagen $ 201.00 Freyberg NZ $ 201.00 Ace Light $ 301.00 Alchemy NZ $ 301.00 Alta Jerome NZ $ 301.00 Artoc NZ $ 301.00 Beau Dandy $ 301.00 Bettor Draw NZ $ 301.00 Chance NZ $ 301.00 Chevals Clivesdale $ 301.00 Come On Frank $ 301.00 Comply Or Die NZ $ 301.00 Composed $ 301.00 Crombie $ 301.00 Dalton Bromac NZ $ 301.00 Destreos NZ $ 301.00 Drunken Desire $ 301.00 Dundee Three NZ $ 301.00 Dynamite Dude $ 301.00 Emperor Montana NZ $ 301.00 Exciteusinthecity $ 301.00 Fernleigh Renegade NZ $ 301.00 Funny Boy NZ $ 301.00 Go West U Terror NZ $ 301.00 Gumdrops $ 301.00 Im A Peregrine $ 301.00 Ima Rocket Star NZ $ 301.00 It Is Billy $ 301.00 Jaccka Clive NZ $ 301.00 Jaydens Castle $ 301.00 Jazzabout $ 301.00 Lark Rise NZ $ 301.00 Latteron $ 301.00 Lets Elope NZ $ 301.00 Lewy Risk NZ $ 301.00 Lombo Toscannini $ 301.00 Lovable Larrikin $ 301.00 Mabrook NZ $ 301.00 Mach Banner NZ $ 301.00 Marty Monkhouser $ 301.00 Montana Falcon NZ $ 301.00 My Elusive Dream NZ $ 301.00 My General Lee $ 301.00 My Jellignite NZ $ 301.00 Only The Brave NZ $ 301.00 Our Blackbird NZ $ 301.00 Our Pacquiao NZ $ 301.00 Palais Du Louvre $ 301.00 Pas Ultimate Delight NZ $ 301.00 Pub Blitz $ 301.00 Rathmore Lady NZ $ 301.00 Rohan Home $ 301.00 Saucy Legend NZ $ 301.00 Savesomtimetodream $ 301.00 Shardons Rocket NZ $ 301.00 Shipwreck $ 301.00 Sign To Inverell $ 301.00 Smart Major NZ $ 301.00 Smudge Bromac NZ $ 301.00 Tact Hayleys Delight NZ $ 301.00 The Stingray $ 301.00 This Time Dylan NZ $ 301.00 Ultimate Art $ 301.00 Uncle Wingnut NZ $ 301.00 Wartime Sweetheart NZ $ 301.00 Western Rockstar $ 301.00 Wrongly Accused $ 301.00 Zenable NZ $ 301.00
Record nominations have been lodged for harness racing’s ‘holy grail’ – the TAB.COM.AU Inter Dominion. Nominations for the prestigious series closed yesterday, with 150 received by Harness Racing New South Wales before the shut off. This compares to 133 last year and just 83 in 2012. New South Wales has the most entries with 50, followed by Victoria (37), Queensland 27, Western Australia (21) and New Zealand 20. Multiple feature race winner, Come On Frank, is the sole South Australian. It would also appear the host state has officially claimed defending champion, Beautide, as their own. After winning last year’s Final as a ‘Tasmanian’, Beautide is now a member of the New South Wales 50. Leading local trainer Shane Tritton has the biggest squad with 15 nominations, headed by speedster Suave Stuey Lombo. A heat will be conducted at Addington, Tabcorp Park Melton, Albion Park and Gloucester Park, with two qualifiers at Tabcorp Park Menangle….all on February 14. The Final is scheduled to be run at Menangle on March 1. PAUL COURTS Horse Trainer State Alchemy NZ KerryAnn Turner NSW Alta Jerome NZ Kevin Pizzuto NSW Ardghal NZ Shane Tritton NSW Aspiring Artist Shane Tritton NSW Beautide James Rattray NSW Bettor Bet Black Darren McCall NSW Blazin N Cullen NZ John McCarthy NSW Chance NZ Shane Tritton NSW Chariot King John Tapp NSW Christian Ruler NZ Steve Turnbull NSW Condagen Dennis Picker NSW Courage To Rule NZ Belinda McCarthy NSW Devendra James Rattray NSW Easy On The Eye NZ Shane Tritton NSW Elusive Chick NZ KerryAnn Turner NSW Fearless Leader NZ Shane Tritton NSW Fernleigh Renegade NZ KerryAnn Turner NSW For A Reason Belinda McCarthy NSW Freyberg NZ Kevin Pizzuto NSW Gaius Caesar NZ Darren Binskin NSW Heza Thrill NZ Steve Turnbull NSW Iam Mr Brightside NZ KerryAnn Turner NSW Lark Rise NZ Darren Binskin NSW Latteron Shane Tritton NSW Living Lord NZ Darren McCall NSW Lochinver NZ Ashlee Siejka NSW Lombo Toscannini Shane Tritton NSW Mabrook NZ Roy Roots (snr) NSW Mach Beauty Shane Tritton NSW Mark Dennis Shane Tritton NSW Marty Monkhouser Shane Tritton NSW Monifieth NZ John McCarthy NSW My General Lee Robert Xerri NSW Our Hi Jinx NZ Belinda McCarthy NSW Pas Ultimate Delight NZ Shane Tritton NSW Rathmore Lady NZ Shane Tritton NSW Rohan Home Paul Fitzpatrick NSW Saucy Legend NZ Shane Tritton NSW Seel N Print NZ Todd McCarthy NSW Shipwreck Shane Tritton NSW Smart Major NZ Jeff Brown NSW Suave Stuey Lombo Shane Tritton NSW Tact Hayleys Delight NZ Darren Binskin NSW Teo Enteo Darren Hancock NSW Terrorway NZ John McCarthy NSW The Stingray Mark Rolfe NSW Ultimate Art Michael Formosa NSW Western Rockstar Darren McCall NSW Whozideawasthis NZ Kevin Pizzuto NSW Zenable NZ KerryAnn Turner NSW Adore Me NZ Mark Purdon NZ Arden Rooney NZ Mark Purdon NZ Bit Of A Legend NZ Cran Dalgety NZ Border Control NZ Mark Purdon NZ Christen Me NZ Cran Dalgety NZ Dalton Bromac NZ Brendon Hill NZ Elios NZ Robert Dunn NZ Franco Nelson NZ Robert Dunn NZ Jivin Cullen NZ Robert Dunn NZ Johny Rock USA Paul Court NZ Lewy Risk NZ Lew Driver NZ Pemberton Shard NZ Brad Mowbray NZ Saveapatrol NZ Mark Jones NZ Terror To Love NZ Paul Court NZ Ace Light Vicki Rasmussen QLD American Legend Shannon Price QLD Avonnova Ian Gurney QLD Beau Dandy Jim Morris QLD Bettor Draw NZ Narissa McMullen QLD Brigadier Bronski Mick Grant QLD Caesars Folly NZ Shannon Price QLD Chevals Clivesdale Shannon Price QLD Destreos NZ Ken Rattray QLD Devil Dodger NZ Grant Dixon QLD Drunken Desire Vicki Rasmussen QLD Emperor Montana NZ Darrel Graham QLD Field Officer NZ Grant Dixon QLD Forever Gold Darren Weeks QLD Funny Boy NZ Ken Rattray QLD Jazzabout Tahn Camilleri QLD Mach Alert NZ Ian Gurney QLD Majestic Mach Grant Dixon QLD Majestic Major NZ Grant Dixon QLD Montana Falcon NZ Darrel Graham QLD My Elusive Dream NZ Grant Dixon QLD My Jellignite NZ Naomi Sanderson QLD Only The Brave NZ Grant Dixon QLD Our Pacquiao NZ Grant Dixon QLD Sign To Inverell Darrel Graham QLD Supreme Mach NZ Grant Dixon QLD Terror Time Shannon Price QLD Come On Frank Darren Billinger SA Abettorpunt David Lewis VIC Artoc NZ Danny Mullan VIC Beauty Secret Emma Stewart VIC Bellas Delight Kari Males VIC Bitobliss Scott Stewart VIC Chancellor Cullen NZ Amanda Grieve VIC Chilli Palmer NZ Amanda Grieve VIC Cold Major David Aiken VIC Comply Or Die NZ Amanda Grieve VIC Composed David Aiken VIC Exciteusinthecity Darren Cole VIC Flaming Flutter NZ Geoff Webster VIC Franco Ledger NZ Geoff Webster VIC Guaranteed Emma Stewart VIC Gumdrops Steven Zammit VIC Im Corzin Terror NZ Amanda Grieve VIC It Is Billy Mick Barby VIC Jaccka Clive NZ David Aiken VIC Jaydens Castle Gaita Pullicino VIC Keayang Cullen Margaret Lee VIC Keayang Steamer Margaret Lee VIC Lennytheshark David Aiken VIC Lets Elope NZ Brent Lilley VIC Lovable Larrikin Gaita Pullicino VIC Macha NZ Amanda Grieve VIC Macho Comacho NZ Amanda Grieve VIC Magical Telf NZ Amanda Grieve VIC Maximan NZ Andy Gath VIC Palais Du Louvre Leigh Miles VIC Philadelphia Man Emma Stewart VIC Pub Blitz Geoff Webster VIC Restrepo Emma Stewart VIC Rule Like A King NZ Amanda Grieve VIC Savesomtimetodream Paul Rowse VIC Smudge Bromac NZ David Aiken VIC Uncle Wingnut NZ Joe Costa VIC Wartime Sweetheart NZ David Aiken VIC Bettor Offer NZ Greg & Skye Bond WA Bettors Fire NZ Kyle Harper WA Billies A Star NZ Michael Brennan WA Crombie Gary Elson WA David Hercules David Thompson WA Dundee Three NZ Stephanie Smith WA Dynamite Dude Ross Olivieri WA Go West U Terror NZ Trevor Wright WA Hokonui Ben NZ Aldo Cortopassi WA Im A Peregrine Ross Olivieri WA Ima Rocket Star NZ Greg & Skye Bond WA In The Perfect Storm NZ Michael Brennan WA Mach Banner NZ Greg & Skye Bond WA Mysta Magical Mach NZ Tony Svilicich WA Our Blackbird NZ Ross Olivieri WA Our Jimmy Johnstone NZ Greg & Skye Bond WA Our Major Mark NZ Greg & Skye Bond WA Sensational Gabby Ross Olivieri WA Shardons Rocket NZ Tony Svilicich WA This Time Dylan NZ Michael Brennan WA Wrongly Accused Tony Svilicich WA
Punters continue to support New Zealand harness racing star Christen Me ahead of Saturday night’s SEW-Eurodrive Miracle Mile at Menangle. Posted at $5 earlier this week, Christen Me has firmed slightly to be $4.20 on TAB Fixed Odds, with defending champion Beautide remaining favourite at $1.70. With 31 per cent of the market bet on the Cran Dalgety-trained gelding, Christen Me shapes as the TAB’s worst result. Success will see Christen Me’s sire – Christian Cullen – become the first Miracle Mile champion to produce a subsequent winner. With plenty of betting time remaining, Beautide may still become a tragic outcome for the TAB, with twice as much money for him as Christen Me during the past 24 hours. A steady flow of wagers has seen Beautide’s market share increase to 27, with Victorian raider, Guaranteed next at 17 per cent. Surprisingly the fastest competitor in the field – For A Reason – is attracting little attention with son of Art Major commanding just four-and-a-half per cent of the market. Despite drawing ideally in the pole, Easy On The Eye is virtually friendless, with less than two per cent of the marketing in support of the gelding. Punters looking to splurge on the ‘multiples’ are in for a treat, with the TAB guaranteeing a $200,000 jackpot on the Menangle ‘Quaddie’ and $100,000 jackpot on the Miracle Mile First Four. 1 – EASY ON THE EYE (TAB’s fluctuation since draw $16 to $31) Percentage of market: 1.7 2 – AVONNOVA ($12 to $16) Percentage of market: 6 3 – BEAUTIDE ($1.75 to $1.70) Percentage of market: 27 4 – CHRISTEN ME ($5 to $4.20) Percentage of market: 31 Big bet: $3k at $5 5 – FOR A REASON ($6.50 to $7.50) Percentage of market: 4.5 6 – CHARIOT KING (2nd emergency, $101 to $151) Percentage of market: -- 7 – GUARANTEED ($7.50 to $12 back to $10) Percentage of market: 16 8 – SUAVE STUEY LOMBO ($12 to $16) Percentage of market: 6 9 – BETTOR BET BLACK (1st emergency, $151 to $301) Percentage of market: -- 10 – TERROR TO LOVE ($21 to $35 back to $21) Percentage of market: 6 Big bet: $200 x $400 at $41 PAUL COURTS
Tabcorp Holdings Limited has again been ranked the global gambling industry leader in the annual Dow Jones Sustainability Index in 2014. Tabcorp has received this recognition for nine out of the last 10 years, positioning it ahead of other Australian and international wagering, casino and lottery operators. The company received a 100 per cent rating in the 'Promoting Responsible Gaming' category for the eight successive years. Tabcorp Managing Director and CEO, David Attenborough stated Tabcorp is committed to operating sustainably. “Tabcorp’s continued global leadership in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index is a testament to our commitment to a high standard of governance,” Attenborough declared. “Tabcorp operates its businesses with utmost integrity for the benefit of our many stakeholders, including investors, the racing industry and hotel and club partners. “We are proud to lead the way in responsible gambling in Australia and globally.” Of the criterion on which 23 companies from across the globe in the casino and gaming sector were assessed, Tabcorp received the top score in 11 of the 19 measures. The DJSI assessed Tabcorp across economic, environmental and social dimensions. In addition to promoting responsible gambling, Tabcorp's other leading measures in its sustainability ranking include stakeholder engagement, anti-crime policy/measures, brand management, corporate governance and talent attraction and retention. In the 2014 financial year, Tabcorp’s businesses generated more than $500million in taxes on gambling and income taxes paid and payable. Tabcorp is also the single largest supporter of the Australian racing industry, returning $735million last financial year. As proven during the past two years, Tabcorp is also a generous community sponsor – highlighted by their support of Victoria’s Charity Football Day, which raised an astonishing $29,000 for the Childrens’ Tumour Foundation.
It was a case of mixed emotions at Victorian harness racing’s biggest social event – TAB.COM.AU Charity Football Day – at Bendigo yesterday. As a high, the Melton girls cleaned up in the Aldebaran Netball Cup, but on the downside, the Melton fellas were smashed on the Tabcorp footy field. Melton is yet to win from four starts…the only team still waiting to enjoy a taste glory! On the opposite end of the scale, the skill and agility of the netballers placed them in a class of their own as they rocketed to success. Multiple Group One winning reinswoman Kate Gath was the recipient of the Yirribee Stud Most Valuable Player Award. Gath’s football counterpart was Heath Barton, who enjoyed double success as a member of the triumphant Shepparton squad. After dispensing of Ballarat in the opener, Shepparton then accounted for defending champions, Bendigo, to hold the Tabcorp Premiership Cup aloft. Tobey Courts,11, earned an honourable mention after booting four goals, including three against Ballarat. Away from the fun and games, the event had a serious side – raising awareness and valuable funds for the Childrens’ Tumour Foundation. Thrilled with the wide spread involvement, organiser Robbie O’Connell declared both ‘goals’ were achieved by the 500-strong crowd. “The amount of publicity this day has generated has certainly helped raising the awareness of the cause,” O’Connell said. “Anyone in harness racing would have to have been living in a cave not to have known about the day and what it’s all about. “And I’m thrilled to say we eclipsed last year’s total and even bettered our target amount in money raised. After $14,000 last year we were hoping for $20,000 this time, but we’re sitting on $22,000 at the moment. “Everyone involved, be it sponsor, helper, player or spectator can hold their heads up high…well, except for the Melton footy team!” There were also plenty of fun activities for the kids throughout the afternoon, as they enjoyed the jumping castle, little athletics competition and the free Auckland Reactor soccer and footballs thanks to Alabar Bloodstock. Alexa Astin and Will Janky were big winners after scoring bikes thanks to Amart Sports Melton by guessing the amount of snakes in a jar. “I couldn’t believe Alexa guessed the exact amount,” O’Connell said. “I thought I was clever not making it an obvious amount like 125 or 120, so I left it at 123. “According to Alexa’s dad her guess was simple, she counted them one, two, three, so he wrote that down! “Overall if was a terrific day, everyone had fun and we achieved our goals thanks to the sponsors, the helpers and every person who came and participated in the spirit of it all.” PAUL COURTS
JUST days out from the TAB.COM.AU Charity Football Day and the generosity just keeps flowing. Already a major sponsor in two areas, Alabar Bloodstock has once again increased its involvement in what has developed in Victorian harness racing’s biggest social event. One of the first to support last year’s inaugural edition, Alabar was quick to return this time to cover the costs of the foot and netballs. On top of that, the leading breeding establishment has donated a service to Grinfromeartoear as the headliner for the mega raffle. Now Alabar has joined forced with Amart Melton and Burley to deliver ‘Auckland Reactor’ soccer and footballs to the first 60 kids to attend the big day. The latest gesture also compliments the two bikes Amart Melton has donated for the lucky boy and girl who guess the correct (or closest to) amount of snakes in a jar, which will be displayed throughout the day…entry is FREE!. Not to forget prominent owner Kevin Riseley, who has generously offered to cover the cost of hiring a jumping castle for children to enjoy, or Allan McNeil, who has donated lolly bags. “Alabar, Amart, Kevin and Allan have just been so generous,” event organiser Robbie O’Connell said. “Their focus on the kids’ activities will help turn this into a massive family day, just the kind of event harness racing needs. “Now we have the dads playing footy, the mums hitting the netball court and the kids going nuts, as kids should.” Other sponsors include Tabcorp, James and son, Seelite Windows and Doors and Glenn Sharp. A fun occasion for all industry participants, Sunday’s event also has a serious side – raising valuable funds for the Childrens’ Tumour Foundation. That’s where a small fee of $50 for players and spectators (under 16 free) comes into play. Not only does the fee cover the costs of the games, sausage sizzle and the night’s function, it adds to the tally to aid children suffering from Neurofibromatosis. Last year’s event raised $14,000, which is outstanding considering the foundation receives just $18,000 from the government. Along with the fun and games, the function will also include a memorabilia auction. It was last year’s auction that proved to be the biggest money spinner for the cause. Paul Smart from Azuma International supplied the various pieces of memorabilia, which raised almost $8000. Smart will be back this year with “some sensational memorabilia”, so attendees better make sure their wallets are loaded! Teams from four districts – Melton (Go Blues), Ballarat, Shepparton and Bendigo – will do battle throughout the day, with the first event, a netball match, to begin at 11:30am at the Strathfieldsaye Sports Club. The first footy game is scheduled to start at noon. “The Strathfieldsaye Club has offered us free use of their grounds and facilities,” O’Connell said. They have two footy ovals and three netball courts, so it’s the perfect pl ace for us. “Last year’s day was big, but this year will be huge.” For more information please contact Robbie O'Connell on 0404 728 885. Paul Courts