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Another Stroke of Chadwick Genius


Queensland’s Chief Steward just gets better and better with every week.

See that horse Jadentom that raced three wide without cover?

It didn’t.

The horse was never any wider throughout the race than one off the fence.

Chadwick has confused it with Sukwhinder, the horse that is out three wide in front of Jadentom contesting for the lead.


It’s an easy mistake to make I guess.

If you think spots are stars, and ignore the sleeves and cap.

David Fowler made a similar one earlier in the day, in his 4TAB call of race 7, where he called the dead-heat winner Quantico into third.

At least he will never pick up on Peter Chadwick’s mistakes, not the Chief Steward on his.

God Save the Queen.

For seemingly nothing can save Brisbane racing.

A Punter’s Nightmare and Waking Dream

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This is a true story.

Yesterday a bloke had an seven-leg all-up multi going with six legs down, and only one left to go.

The last leg was the Western Bulldogs to beat the North Melbourne Kangaroos by 39 points or less in their clash at Marvel Stadium.

“So what?” you say. “There are people who have 7-leg multis on the footy going every weekend of the season”.

You are right too.

But they don’t have them going for $1.4 million.

That is not a misprint.

This punter had placed three grand on a seven leg multi, and they had it going in the last leg for one point four million dollars.

Gospel truth.

The bloke could have cashed in after six, but he didn’t.

He let it ride, all in the pot, guts or glory.

I wonder if he regrets it now.

Silly question – of course he does.

He was looking good at half time, when the scores were just 20 points apart at 35 – 15.

But then in the second half, the Bulldogs exploded.

They won by 49.

The punter got not nothing, not a cent.

I’m told Lloyd Merlehan slept like a baby last night.

If I had escaped a $1.4 million bullet, I would have too.

I wonder if the poor old multi punter slept a single wink?

Man, how could you?

Bloody Bulldogs.

Oh well, its only money.

That’s what some people say anyway.

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Mork Calling Orson – Come in Orson – Come in Orson – Is There Anybody There?


This is the official Stewards Report from the Townsville races yesterday.

The Stewards declare that they relayed a change of riding tactics to punters via on-course public address and social media.

These QRIC employees claim that they relayed a further three riding tactic changes to punters throughout the day, making it four in total.

There is just one problem.

How do you relay information to punters via the on-course public address system, when there aren’t actually any punters there?

Please explain.

I bet you can’t.


80 Not Out, and Still Batting Strong – A Century is a Certainty – Happy Birthday Mr Seymour, Happy Birthday to You!

Guess who is having a birthday today?

Mr Kevin Seymour A.M.

Born on the Fourth of July.

Happy Birthday Kevin!

Maggie and I hope it is a truly wonderful day for you, Kay and the kids, and that together surrounded in love you enjoy many, many more.

Now all we need is for Colt Thirty One and Fame Assured to run one-two, and for the Colt to smash the track record to pieces.

That will put the candles on the cake.

Hip hip, hooray!





Rickie Alchin Performs a Miracle – Slow Joe Slices 5 Seconds Off His Best Time – The 1 Start No Placings From 9 Starts Plodder is Suddenly as Fast as the Colt – But How?

We saw something most peculiar last night at Albion Park.

The visiting NSW trainer Rickie Alchin, a very nice young bloke who brings a team up to Queensland to race at the Winter Carnival meetings each year, rolled out a three-year-old gelding named Black Hawk Joe in the seventh race.

Now Black Hawk Joe had never paced a mile faster in his life than the 1.55.5 he ran at Menangle last August, which given that the much larger Menangle track is on average about 2-3 seconds faster than the Creek, means that Joe’s fasted lifetime converted mile rate was about 1.58.0, give or take a few tenths of a second as change.

Joe wasn’t in real good form coming into the race.

At his last start at Menangle, he’d popped in on the leaders back early with a real soft suck, and had the gun run, but was gone at the 200 and dropped right out to get beaten over 20 metres by an $81 shot in 1.53.8, which is only middling time at best on that circuit.

The start before that Black Hawk Joe had sat 1-2 and couldn’t go, finishing 16.7 metres behind the winner whose back he had sat on, in ordinary time of 1.54.8; and the time before that he’s worked hard to the death and dropped out last beaten half the length of the straight in 1.54.0.

It wasn’t a very auspicious form line, and remembering that times at Albion Park are significantly slower than in Menangle, there was nothing that Joe had done in his career or of late that would make even the canniest of form gurus imagine that he could possibly run better than about 1.56.5 at the Creek, and he’d have improve lengths in the Queensland sunshine to even do that.

Well blow me down with a feather and call me Mary-Lou.

Black Hawk Joe steps out last night, gets backed off the map, and scorches the paceway.

Rickie Alchin takes him to the lead in a stroll, but ups the revs early even though unchallenged, and he runs 28.4 seconds for the first quarter.

You expect Alchin to drop anchor, but he doesn’t, and Joe goes through his next split in 29.7, which is a bit too quick for a horse with a converted best of 1.58.0 and a potential improved best of 1.56.5. because it means that he has run his first half (800m) in 58.1 seconds, which means that he’s not going to be able to come home any faster than about 58.5 seconds for the last half, and that might not be quick enough with the swoopers sitting back soft off the fast pace.

Alchin turns it up in the third quarter and runs a super slick 27.4 seconds, which is Colt Thirty One class time.

If you are a favourite backer looking at the sectional times not the screen, you start screaming at the top of your lungs and calling Alchin every name under the sun for going so fast, because but the Colt’s a champion who has won a Vic Derby, whereas Joe’s just a won win and no placings from 9 starts plodder.

He has to crack, he has to for sure.

Then you look at the screen and see Joe’s half a mile in front and pulling away on the turn, and the only thing that’s going to beat him is a lightning bolt between the eyes, and there are no clouds and its not raining.

Black Hawk Joe bolts in, beats the second horse by nearly 25 metres and the third one by nearly 40.

You look back at the clock, and almost fall off your chair.

Joes run his last quarter in 27.7 seconds.

He’s run the last half in 54.1.

Not even the Colt can run a half that fast at Albion Park.

The overall time is 1.53.2.

It’s the second quickest time of the night, only half a second outside the fast class horses, and this is the lowliest rated race of the night.

Black Hawk Joe has sliced 2.3 seconds off his best ever time, and almost 5 seconds off his Albion Park adjusted best.


Has Rickie Alchin performed a miracle?

Is he the greatest trainer since Barry Purdon?

Or is it something more?

I guess it will be interesting to see what TCO2 level Joe throws up.

Very, very interesting indeed.

Watch this space.




Like a Camel Through the Eye of a Needle – Or Down It’s Nose Anyway – Need a Boost? –


This is the gear that real men use.

Bicarb and Brown Sugar are for wimps.

ITPP is the gear.

Gee, look what it does.

Gives your camel more oxygen in the blood.

Reduces lactic acid.

Increases maximum energy capacity.

Improves stamina.

All the things a a real good doper needs.

Best of all though, if you it right, it never swabs.


The answer is in numbers, not words.





Whack, whack, whack.

With a pick.

You can’t spike them on race day though. The vets look for needle marks.

So you have to use a drench.

It’s lucky ITPP comes in powdered form that you can fizz up and stick down the horses throat though, isn’t it?

The only other thing you need is a twitch.


Sorry Ross and the QRIC.

I had that one arse up.

Lots of trainers are.

Just ask Daryl Hansen and his mate John Zielke.



Angus Kicks Away – And Next Season He Will Kick Them All


The Queensland harness racing Junior Driver’s Premiership is all over bar the shouting now that the wonder kid Angus Garrard has finally been granted his open license to drive at Albion Park on a Saturday night.

Young Angus, who has just turned 17 – Happy Birthday son! – was sitting in the top 3 on the table even when handicapped by not being able to drive at metro meetings while all his rivals could, but since being given the all clear to compete on level terms he’s stamped his brilliance for the whole world to see, and has booted 8 wins clear and running.

We’ve been raving about how good Angus is for a year or more, and now finally the world has caught up, and what a great thing it is for the sport of harness racing. We need young people like him to re-energise our sport, and more particularly we need good young trainers and drivers who can’t be tempted by a dirty dollar, and whose only motivation when they step out onto a track is to win.

This kid is an absolute genius in the sulky.

He’s a breath of fresh air too.

This year the junior drivers premiership, next year the world.

You just watch and see.

So What’s the Problem With the Trots? – Here is Just One

So, what's the problem?
ARCHIE’S NOTE – This article by prominent USA harness identity Bob Marks is highly instructive, and a must read for all integrity officials working in the sport of harness racing. People inside the industry bubble often forget that if it were not for people betting on the trots, they would be racing for a ribbon and a bag of feed at the local showgrounds. If the industry doesn’t wake up to itself soon and take a look at the plummeting wagering turnover figures, it will be again before they know it too.
Initially as a kid, I was so awed by the goings on at Roosevelt or Yonkers that I felt it was privilege to be allowed into the place. After the initial euphoria was replaced by the sober light of losing money, I no longer felt that way.
It was my job to learn the ropes so to speak and as an apprentice handicapper and bettor, that meant many a losing wager until one could figure out what was happening out there on the track.
Sort of like starting in the company mail room before you’re entrusted with any degree of responsibility. It’s called the learning curve.
Needless to say, I made more than my share of ridiculous bets on horses and drivers that realistically had little or no shot at winning that particular race.
More than once, I had to exit the southbound Meadowbrook Parkway at Merrick Road for I no longer had the 20 cent toll needed take the loop to Point Lookout and Long Beach.
But that was the life I had chosen. Nobody forced me to attend the races. And if I did, no one forced me to visit the betting windows. I could have watched every race every night without wagering and nobody would have been be the wiser.
But I bet and after much time had elapsed, I became a proficient handicapper and would win more than just occasionally.
I remember betting this horse who had won his last two starts via the wire to wire method. In other words, he went to the front and led throughout. This time however, in a race where it seemed nobody wanted the lead, the horse ducked to the rail and never moved out even though at times there was ample clearance.
When I mentioned this to one of the seasoned veteran opinions, I was told “He probably didn’t try”.
Aghast, I stammered why not? The maven explained that the horse had won consecutively in class B2 and class B1 and a second win at the B1 level meant an automatic promotion to the tougher A3 class. Therefore the horse not winning this race while nursing and/or milking the class for purse (place) checks made sense. At least to the connections!​
Hmmm, that was a real eye opener. You mean they allow this to happen? It’s like playing cards with a marked deck? Nowhere on the program does it say, number six will be “raced easy” tonight.
Being a quick study, I learned to incorporate intent into a my handicapping process and probably saved myself a few bad bets by anticipating just which horses might not be giving it the old college try that particular night.
This little process was not limited to the ABC system as under the conditioned system of money earned within a number of last starts, one could also discern the occasional horse that might benefit from not winning and/or earning on a particular night to warrant a class dropdown.
It didn’t mean, I could pick more winners it’s just that I was now able to eliminate some very obvious losers from time to time.
A bit later when I mastered the art of clocking pre-race workouts, the stopwatch became a virtual tattle tale as far as some stables were concerned. One could often forecast just how the horse might race by the manner in which it went its last trip.
The key here had nothing to do with which horse may have worked the fastest but had everything to do with its workout pattern as the sophisticated “clockers” kept records which could be compared with actual race performance.
(Archie’s note = ‘Clocking’ is no longer possible now that the major trainers work horses at their own properties and perform pace work on their own tracks. Not coincidentally, drug cheating has increased rapidly since horses have been no longer stabled at the tracks)
Amazing how I caught Hal Sampson going his last trip in 2:15 with a last quarter in 30 seconds flat when the week before at 7-2 he did a 2:19 and home in 32. In that race the horse never left the rail and finished in the middle of the pack.
Now he’s 15-1.
Oh yes, the little black bullet turned for home third over (three back and wide) and flew down the stretch to up at the wire (finish line) returning a $30+ Mutual (tote price).
One week later in the same class, he goes his last trip in 2:17 and change and finishes out slower than a 32 second last quarter.
Funny, how he got boxed most of the mile and maybe finished fifth.
One week later in the same class, I catch him in 2:14.4 with final quarter in 29.4 seconds and guess what he’s 10-1 at post parade time? Hmmm.
At post time he’s 15-1 or so and as you might surmise, he pulled at the half for cover, went wide in the stretch and was up in time well before the wire (finish line).
Needless to say he got promoted to a higher class but someone other than yours truly probably cashed a nice ticket. Again!
A few years later I witnessed a little incident that happened on the second floor clubhouse after a hotly contested race. During the replay, one irate chap was verbally castigating the driver of the favorite for not pulling on the final turn when he had ample room to do so.
Another chap, the owner smugly countered with “we didn’t want to win for it meant a class upgrade if we did”
The irate bettor then rather strongly suggested to the owner that he shouldn’t mind reimbursing his now useless tickets for nowhere on the program did it say number two wasn’t “going” tonight.
The owner laughed it off. A few epithets were loudly offered and what ensued was a right hand Rocky Marciano would have been proud of.
The bettor flattened the owner, shoved his tickets in the guy’s mouth and by the time security got there nobody saw NUTTIN….
Any discussions with track officials about this sort of stuff always proved exercises in futility. Unless somebody blatantly interfered with somebody else, the official sign was quickly posted. It should be understood that the judges were not professional handicappers thus were not trained to discern form reversals.
Even if a suit actually granted audience, the burden of proof was on the bettor who was speaking in what seemed a foreign language as the suit had probably never sampled the product in which his income might be determined by the number of winners he could pick. It wasn’t like the supermarket exec that actually visited the rival store to personally gauge how they stacked the shelves.
It happened. It shouldn’t have but it did and one wonders how many tens or even hundreds of thousands of loyal fans gave up the game because of perceived shenanigans. We’re not talking about a boat race in which the result might have been preordained but the simple process of horses racing easy for whatever the reason.
You see, some players become good enough to intuitively sense these things and bet accordingly. The overwhelming majority of players (punters) left to their own devices will perceive whatever evils their eyes may suggest.
And therein is the problem.
You see, I the player am the bottom line and if I choose not to play (gamble or bet) for whatever the reason, you Mr. Racetrack (Racing QLD) will ultimately have no handle (betting turnover).
Unfortunately, you should have realized that decades ago.
If you had, we still might all be there.