Tag: race

How Can You Mend a Broken Heart? – Highway Robbery – Part 1 – The Hook – an Archie Butterfly Exclusive

Do you remember when you were little and you believed in dreams?

It was Santa who put the toys in your stocking, and the Easter Bunny who set the eggs for the hunt, and the tooth fairy who left a dollar under your pillow when one fell out.

The world was wide back then, and you looked forward at the future and all you could see were straight lines and stars.

Then one day you got a bit older, and started to ask yourself questions about these fairies and fat men and bunnies, and before you knew it you were realising that it was all just fantasy, and fluff and white lies, and then you asked your Mum and she admitted it, and you smiled and shrugged and felt old and smart, and from that moment on you knew that life was glittered with tiny little lies.

I believed James McDonald when he got done a few years back for having a thousand bucks on his winning ride Astern.

I believed him when he said that he’d made an error of judgement.

I believed him when he said it wasn’t that bad because he had bet on his own horse not another in the race.

I believed him when he said that all he had on the horse was the single thousand.

Well sort of, anyway.

I like J-Mac, and I love his skill as rider and admire the way he can float in the saddle of a horse like MJ soaring through air on his way to the hoop.

When I was living in New Zealand I had seen McDonald as 15-year-old kid riding at the bush track at Waipukurau just up the road from our farm, and I’d rushed home to ring all my mates back in Australia that I’d just seen God, in the flesh, right in front of my eyes.

I backed him and backed him and backed him, that season and the next, and won nearly enough to buy another farm (of course I later knocked that on the head, and knocked the one I had off too – easy come, easy go; if you live and buy by the punt you can’t really complain when you lose by it and still wake up breathing, can you?).

I wanted to believe J-Mac, so I did.

I cast aside all my doubts about why he’d get a shady racecourse dodger to put on his bet, or why the dodger had won $125 000 yet J-Mac only four, or why the dodger was willing to get warned off rather than hand over his betting records, or how when another horse looked like running past him it suddenly veered sideways left and ran to the outside fence, or why the Group 1 winner J-Mac stood up in the irons and celebrated like he’d won the Cup as they passed the post in a lowly $48 000 affair.

I believed because I wanted to believe.

But I was kidding myself.

Leopards are leopards.

They don’t suddenly step out of the nest one day as snow white turtle doves, fly into the forest, grow legs, spots, a tail and teeth, maul a gazelle and eat it, wipe the blood from their paws and faces, then run off to the tree again and turn back into a dove and fly up to the nest.

Leopards don’t change their spots, and crooked jockeys who associate with shady characters and bet large sums on horses don’t either.

There is no Santa Claus, or Easter Bunny, or Tooth Fairy.

Our parents lied.

I don’t believe J-Mac anymore.

This is the Stewards report into J-Mac’s ride on the favourite Keen Power in the 3rd race at Randwick a fortnight ago.

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This is J-Mac’s ride, the last part of it anyway.

Before this point he’d begun with them from barrier 10, jagged the fave back to near last in preference to looking for a spot, run up into a traffic jam on the turn, and sat there like a stunned mullet instead of following the others out wide.

On a track on which the inside was clearly off, one of the world’s finest jockeys goes inside instead of out.

Look at his eyes.

Look at his eyes.

Can you see anyone else’s?

No, and you won’t in the pictures to follow either, and that’s because J-Mac is the only one looking.

The other ones have already done their jobs.

What James Mcdonald is looking for is Brenton Avdulla, and he’s spotted him.

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Avdulla has just miraculously extricated his mount from a pocket on the turn by simply steering it up inside the amateur rider with no ability Nash Rawiller, a man with a very clean slate, and he didn’t even have to jostle.

Hugh Bowman on the horse in green with the yellow hoops has kindly looked after his no-hoping galloper’s welfare by easing back to allow Avdulla the space to come through underneath the timid Rawiller.

It was very nice of him you would have to agree.

Suspend your disbelief, I will show you all this in the next story.

Avdulla surges toward the lead.

McDonald watches.

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Why is J-Mac looking to his left, when he is steering the favourite in to his right?

Are you that silly you don’t know?

He’s measuring the distance, working out when Avdulla is far enough in front that he come out and chase him and make it look like he’s serious, without actually having a hope in Hades of ever catching catch.

J-Mac is one of the best jockeys in the world remember.

Kieren Fallon was once too.

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J-Mac goes back to the inside, where no jockey all day wanted to be.

There is a gap in front of him that you could drive a truck through.

But McDonald steers the favourite in behind another runner, and up its rump.

And then he looks at Avdulla again.

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J-Mac keeps steering the favourite in.

All the while he’s looking.

Looking, looking, looking.

At Brenton Avdulla.

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Safely tucked in an up behing the horse in the black and white, McDonald pauses for a stride or two to reassess the distance between he and Avdulla.

Still he’s looking.

He’s always looking.

Billy Slater used to too, that’s why he never dropped a ball.

Slater could calculate the physics of where to catch it, where to run, and how fast he needed to do it to split the gap.

It’s why he was such a brilliant player.

James McDonald can do it too, in the blink of an eyelid, just like Billy.

It’s why he is such a great jockey.

But James isn’t calculating how, where and how fast he needs to go to win.

He’s working out what he needs to do to lose.

With honour of course, and so it appears the opposite of what is so.

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Eventually J-Mac decides he’s left it long enough, and pulls out into the gap that has been there forever and goes.

He does it slowly though.

Then, finally, he sits down and rides.

For a couple of strides at least.

The bird has flown you see.

And the Eagle has shit.

When the Eagle Shits "Pay Day" Men's T-Shirt | Spreadshirt

There is no Santa Claus.

I suspect that there is a race fixing ring in Sydney though, and it’s run from the top, and through the cream.

It break my heart to say this.

But I suspect that James McDonald just might be a cheat.

to be continued …….

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The Greatest Scandal in NSW Racing This Century is About to Explode – And What You Learn Over the Coming Weeks and Months Will Shock You to the Core – Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow – An Archie Butterfly Exclusive

And so it begins.

Does anyone remember the series of stories I published last year on the subscription site archiebutterfly.com about the Sally Snow affair?

For those who don’t, or who didn’t read it, I wrote that the reasons for the sacking of Sally Snow from her role as the senior odds-setter for the TAB were far, far more deeper and more serious than most people realised, and that when the lid was lifted off the scandal the repercussions would resonate wide and far across racing in NSW, and – to a slightly lesser extent – Victoria, and perhaps even Queensland.

In the series of articles I suggested that some very well-known names in racing – some of the biggest – would be embroiled in the scandal, and that they would include Group 1 winning jockeys, nationally known trainers, and at least one infamous bookmaker whose name was known across the land.

None of this was supposition. I don’t make up fairy tales, I don’t have the imagination, and in racing you don’t need to, for the truths in the game we love are always much, much stranger than fiction.

Coronavirus delayed the long running, and even more long ranging, cross border investigation into matters related to Sally Snow’s dismissal by Tabcorp after the NSW Stewards warned her off racecourses for refusing to produce and hand over her private mobile phones (yes, phones).

There were very good personal reasons for Sally Snow’s decision not to hand over the devices, even though she knew full well that it would mean the end of her career as a corporate bookmaking behemoth’s front woman. These reason’s weren’t related to her individual privacy, but rather to an intense desire not to holiday in Long Bay.

Racing NSW probe link between Sally Snow and Unibet bookmaker

Sadly for Sally (above) though, the investigators already had them. Not the physical phones, but the mirrors, and all the contacts contained on them, and all the texts, calls and mistakenly believed to be encrypted messages made to and from them. The joint police task force had been all over her and her friends for more than 12 months, even though neither she nor they knew it. The cops only asked the Stewards to use their powers to request the phones to make a good thing of it, and to test her hand.

They got the result they expected, and all it was cost Snow her job and her reputation, and confirm to the investigators that their conclusions were 100 percent correct and firming.

A month or two later Sally Snow’s husband Nathan was stopped at customs and detained by border control officers when returning an overseas trip. Nathan Snow’s phones and devices were seized, including those that it is believed were registered in another person’s name.

Around the same time the NSW Stewards demanded that prominent and oft controversial racing identity Steve Fletcher hand his private telephones over to them.

Fletcher complied with the direction, but almost immediately – for reasons that will become abundantly clear over the coming months – lodged an application to the Supreme Court of NSW seeking to restrain the Stewards from accessing or using any information on the phones other than that related directly to the Sally Snow inquiry.

His court application also sought a direction that Stewards provide him with the specific details of the inquiry, and the details of which aspects of it they wished to access limited information from his phone for.

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The NSW Stewards didn’t fall for that trick.

They fought the case.

In April last year Fletcher won.

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The Supreme Court ordered that only specific information contained on Fletcher’s phone could be accessed by the racing officials, and then only in circumstances whereby Fletcher was advised why.

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The Stewards immediately lodged an appeal of the decision with the NSW Supreme Court of Appeal.

In February of this year the Court of Appeal handed down its decision.

This time the Stewards won.

By unanimous decision of the three appeal judges, the Racing NSW Stewards were now permitted to access all of the information on Fletcher’s phones, without telling him why.

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The die was cast, and the wave of summonses to appear before the Stewards on rule breach charges, and the consequent and/or concurrent flood of police arrests were about to commence.

Then the coronavirus hit, and everything went into abeyance.

But none of it went away.

Last week the COVID-19 restrictions were lifted.

Today jockey Adam Hyeronimus has been charged with multiple betting offences.

Look closely at the rule breach charges that the rider has been hit with.

Hyeronimus has not charged with placing bets himself, but rather with having beneficial interests in bets placed on his behalf.

You can take one guess as to who placed the bets on the jockeys beneficial behalf, and why.

This is Steve Fletcher (below).

His picture is only published in this story because he’s handsome.

Supreme Court grants Racing NSW right to inspect phone of pro ...

The person who (allegedly) placed the bets is not the principal of the large scale race-fixing and price manipulation operation that is soon to become a front page headline across the country, and unleash a storm that will reverberate across the racing land.

Here is a tip, and it’s a very strong one indeed.

To find a clue as to who the soon to be named alleged principal of what the Stewards will allege to be a highly crook, race hook cartel may be, one would be well advised to take a close look at the trainer or training partnership that Adam Hyeronimus has been most closely associated with throughout his career.

And then ask yourself who that trainer, or member of the training partnership, may share a bed with.

It’s not the trainer that I am suggesting will be alleged to be involved.

He, is not a she.

Here is another tip.

See the extract from the February 2020 Supreme Court of Appeal judgement that is published above?

To save you looking, I will print it again.

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There is a highly skilled sand very experienced young racing Steward whose rapid rise to the top of his profession hit a huge speed bump when the ABC aired the infamous Four Corners report into live baiting in the greyhound industry.

That Steward’s employment was terminated by Racing Queensland in the wake of the scandal, even though it had nothing to do with him at all, and he knew nothing about the cruelty.

Sometime later, after returning from an ostensibly unsuccessful stint in a overseas racing jurisdiction, that Steward returned to Australia, and the widespread impression was that he was finished in the world of racing integrity, and unemployable in the industry.

Ever heard the adage about judging books by their covers? Or watched a boxing match and seen a fighter fall for a sucker punch?

The believed to be unemployable Steward got a job.

As a runner placing TAB bets for Steve Fletcher.

He wasn’t much good at it, but he never intended to be.

Enron alert to Steve Fletcher – there is always a smarter man in every room.

He’s usually the one pretending to be dumb.

After leaving Fletcher’s employment, the unemployable racing Steward returned to the racing industry as a Steward.

Not just any Steward either.

Wade Birch became the Deputy Chief Steward of NSW Racing.

For those who have been asking how and why, your mystery is now solved.

Birch sprints to top job | Sunshine Coast Daily

And if you believed me when I was publicly asking how and why, then you are as silly as Steve Fletcher.

Sorry for misleading you, but once I worked out what was going on, long before anyone else who wasn’t part of the covert operations did, I made a professional and ethical decision to run dead and play dumb, even though it meant writing things that I knew not to be true.

It worked too.

The man who will be named as the alleged principal contacted me out of the blue. I’d never spoken to or met him before.

He invited me to lunch, but I politely declined, telling him that I was in Northern NSW at the time on an assignment seeking to locate and interview people who had gone to the school with the demon who committed the Christchurch massacres, which was true.

The man then arranged for me to brunch with his representative in Byron Bay, a former young tyro bookie at the Gold Coast, who I knew – without the man knowing I knew – now worked as a TAB runner for Steve Fletcher.

I met the former bookie, and played dumb to him, and crazy too. In fact I dropped a pill and smoked two joints on the way to meet the bookie, just to make a good thing of it. It didn’t effect me – I was a street kid after I got raped; I learned early how to handle my drugs – but it fooled him, so much so that, deciding that I knew nothing and was merely a hit and miss merchant, he even tried to leave me with the bill.

Good luck on that one.

He had none, but now I knew for sure that what I’d worked out was 100% right.

I’m a straight, clean racing man.

I always have been, and I always will be.

I don’t talk to police, ever, so they’re safe in that respect, but I know the story and I’m not afraid to write it, and within the confines of the law I will.

Hyeronimus has been in career-best form this year.

Here is one last tip for now.

There is a leading NSW jockey who bears a striking resemblance to Adam Hyeronimus (above).

Or did until last week, when that rider died his hair peroxide blonde.

Many in the media are viewing the hair colour change as a fashion mistake, and making the jockey’s altered appearance a matter of merriment and mirth.

To those innocents I say this.

It is now what you don’t know that defines you skill as an investigative journalist, it is what you do. And sometimes witnesses find it difficult to identify a person when their appearance has drastically changed.

Fukuoka, Japan. 4th Aug, 2018. Brenton Avdulla Horse Racing ...

The war is about to begin, and there will be many casualties along the way.

The snow will be stained red with racing blood.

Put on your helmets, buckle in, and watch this space.

And remember, you heard it all here first.

You always do.

Editor’s note – The licenced racing industry participant charged alongside Adam Hyeronimus is a young man named Blake Paine. He works for the same stable as the one I have identified in this story. So does his father Neil Paine, the man in the funny suit who breached the COVID-19 restrictions by racing across the Randwick mounting yard to hug Adrian Bott after Farnan won this year’s Slipper. Neil Paine – who is not alleged to have any knowledge of matters related to this story or the charges laid against his son – got off with a slap on the wrist with a wet bus ticket for his serious contravention of the NSW Government health directives and the Racing NSW coronavirus protocols. The Stewards had far bigger fish to fry.

 

 

 

I’m Not a Vet, Jockey, Steward, Pull-Up Merchant or Nobbler, But …… Have You Seen the First Race at Toowoomba Yesterday?

Race one at Toowoomba yesterday, a 3-year-old Maiden Plate run over the unusual distance of 870 metres,  was one of the strangest races I have seen for quite a while, a really, really queer one.

There were four horses in the betting.

The topweight Calculated Risk, trained by Craig Smith at Roma, was steady in the market at $5.50, as was Boof Currie’s runner Persian King, which started at $6.50.

Tony and Maddysen Sears first-starter Serratalli blew like a gale, from an opening quote of around $3.50 all the way out to $8.50 by the jump.

All the money came for the debutante Crosby Road. It was backed as if there was no tomorrow, firming from a top price of $2.40 into $1.75, or 6-4 on in the old scale.

The plunge punters obviously didn’t know that just prior to the race, Crosby Road’s trainer Shaun Dwyer Jr had approached the Stewards and told them that he’d noticed his horse had some unexpected swelling on its off-side rump.

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There could be any number of explanations for swelling in such a spot. One of them is that a nobbler had hit the fave with a go-slow to stop it from winning, for the off-side rump is where you’d be likely to give a horse an intra-muscular injection if it was tied up and you wanted to hit and quickly run.

The on-course vet Dr Gemma Silvestri of the QRIC inspected the horse and cleared it to start. As most pre-race vet examinations ultimately prove to be, it wasn’t a particularly brilliant decision.

Crosby Road led until the top of the straight in the short course scamper, and then punctured like a pricked balloon. Another inspection by Dr Silvestri found no obvious abnormalities, other than that the horse was displaying a particularly poor post-rate recovery rate.

I would have thought that if a horse was sweating like a pig and puffing like a chimney after running at 3/4 speed for just 500 metres, then that in itself would be an anomaly, but I’m not a vet, just a horse owner and lover, so what would I know?

Baylee Nothdurft got stuck out wide on Currie’s horse and couldn’t get in. No jockey in Toowoomba is going to let a cheeky little local kid who’s gone to the big smoke and is killing them get in from barrier ten over 870 metres. Anyone who backed it was mad.

In-form city jockey Matthew McGillivray gave the toppie the perfect run, sitting fifth just off the pace on the rail behind the leader, and as top riders do pulled it out at the top of the straight and went bang, and it won.

The run of the odds-on favourite was really odd, but the ride on the horse that nobody wanted to back Serratalli was even more strange.

That filly jumped with them from barrier 6, but her rider Michael Cahill seemed to immediately put on the brakes after they’d gone just 20 metres, and jagged the $3.50 to $8.50 shot out to last.

Cahill was later to tell the Stewards that Serratalli failed to muster speed early, and they duly accepted his explanation, but gee, I’m not so sure. It looked to me as if Cahill just decided not to show any urgency, and took her back to last himself; but I’m not a jockey just a long-time form student and race analyst, so what would I know?

The same applies to my opinion that Michael Cahill was forgetful when he told the Stewards that he had some difficulty securing clear running rounding the home turn, and in the early stages of the home straight.

What Cahill forgot to add was that he couldn’t get any clear running because he kept steering the filly inside and up other horse’s arses, rather than taking her to the middle or outside of the track where there was clear running room; or that by doing so he ensured that Serratalli had a chequered, stop-start run that prevented the young galloper from gaining any uninterrupted momentum.

Brisbane’s top-ten jockey wasn’t wrong when he added that the filly ran home well when she got clear running, it was just a shame that this didn’t happen until about 70 metres from the line when she was still a couple of lengths off them, and a million to one.

The race day Steward – with ten more races to run on the program, and no overtime for late finishes in the budget – were clearly too busy to waste any time examining the betting sheets on a 3YO maiden, and let the matter rest.

I’m not a Steward, just a punter and member of the public who is fast losing confidence in the integrity of Queensland racing, so what would I know?

But gee that race looked red-hot to me.

Take a look for yourself, and see what you reckon.

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Is Riding Horses Dead Becoming More Contagious Than the Coronavirus? – Or Is Too Much Zone-Induced X-Box Just Frying Young Jockey’s Brains?

We saw Baylee Nothdurft pull Vega One up a few weeks ago at the Sunshine Coast, and so did Blind Freddie and his 103 year-old Uncle Wilbur.

To the shock of many, the QRIC Stewards saw it too, and slapped Nothdurft with three months in the bin, commencing some time in 2023 or 20424, at the expiration of the stay of proceedings when his appeal gets finally heard.

Some thought the penalty a bit light, and it probably was, but I’m guessing that the Stewards were concerned that if they went any higher, they might get dusted by the Internal Reviewer Kane Ashby.

After all, Ashby had been outed himself for 6 months for pulling one up as an apprentice, so he’d be bound to have a decent dose of sympathy for Baylee. He might even regard him as a brother in arms. So three it was, and three it is, and the kid may even get to retire before he serves it, who knows?

If nothing else though, Nothdurft’s suspension should have served as a warning sign that the Stewards, now that they had so much extra time on their hands thanks to the virus, were finally starting to watch races, and some of them replays even, and that if they rode a horse dead too obviously, there was a fair chance that they might get caught.

The problem is that right now the young jockeys have a whole of free time on their hands too, and are far too busy killing zombies or winning GP’s on the  X-Box to see or hear any warning signs. So on the pull-ups go, and the only game in town is betting on whether the dead-un’s rider gets caught.

Transplanted Irish apprentice Chris Graham  -he’s still a 3 kilo claimer at age 26 – he’d have to be Irish – is the latest pull-up merchant to feature on television screens across the nation.

Graham’s ride on Pushing Shapes in race 6 at Ascot is classic of the genre.

The comedy genre, that is.

Pushing Shapes in the horse in the yellow sitting last.

Watch the replay here.

The WA Stewards have called Chris Graham in.

They’ve called the trainer Daniel Pearce in too.

That wouldn’t happen in Queensland.

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Fairies at the Bottom of the Garden – Race 7 at Beaudesert on Sunday – Part 1 – Ouch!

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I personally thought the short distance that Fair Fella galloped after dumping Jason Taylor was well and truly long enough, and well and truly cause to scratch it from Race 7 at Beaudesert.

I also know that nine of ten footy players who get pulled off the field because they are concussed and in Disneyland claim that they are okay to play on, and that if Jason Taylor was stood down from injury in that race he would have lost around a thousand dollar in riding fees and prize purse commissions.

I’m not a vet, so while I can question Dr Gemma Silvetri’s decision to allow Fair Fella to run, I can’t with any authority criticise it.

I can say however that proofs are often found in puddings, and tell you that in an 1100 metre scamper around a tight front-runners track, the 13-4 shot that had won its past 3 starts by an average of three lengths led early but was gone at the 600, and that it dropped out to finish seven and a half lengths behind the winner.

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I can’t speak as a vet, and I can’t speak as jockey Jason Taylor either, because I wasn’t the bloke who got hurled off Fair Fella and hit the deck hard, he was.

I can however speak as a footy player who has been concussed, for  back in my junior days I was handed a ticket to Dreamworld a few times. It tends to happen to little, skinny fullbacks who tackle front-rowers who’ve broken through on the burst ball and all, chest high, and hang on like grim death if they can’t trip them, just to make sure the fat, tall bastards can’t put the Sonny Bill down touching the turf.

Let me tell you, it f*cking hurts your head when a kid twice your age who has hair on his nuts at 13 body slams the back of your skull into the turf at full speed, and assure you that the ticket holder tends not to think too clearly for quite a while either, like until at least around lunchtime Monday.

I can also tell you through personal research, and by quoting all and any expert scientific research findings, that people with concussion are the least most qualified in the world to diagnose their own conditions, and make an assessment of their current concussed capacity.

So asking a jockey who has just suffered a trauma that may cause concussion whether he’s right to ride is like asking a bloke in a coma whether he’d like one or two sugars with his tea, or whether he’d like to drink it while he signed a resuscitate or do not resuscitate health directive.

In other words, it is both blindingly stupid, and irresponsibly negligent.

So why did the Stewards allow Jason Taylor to self-assess his condition after Fair Fella threw him behind the gates?

I’m not for a minute saying Taylor was concussed, just that he could have been, and that fact triggers certain duties of care and responsibilities upon the racing officials responsible for running the meeting and the organisations they represent, those outfits being Racing Queensland and the QRIC.

It was good enough to have the horse inspected by a vet.

Why wasn’t it good enough to have the jockey inspected by the on-course doctor?

Head injuries are becoming a huge issue in sport these days, and when they full-flow the damages bills are going to start running in the hundreds of millions.

The folk who run racing in Queensland need to wake up to themselves and their responsibility to people as well as horses, before the lawsuits start drowning them too.

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Jimmy Orman Goes Via Scotland to Get a Collect on Great Keppell – And Gives us All a Tip Along the Way

Does jockey James Orman ever stop moving?

The little big bloke had eight rides at Doomben on Wednesday ( a win and two fourths), shot out to Toowoomba yesterday to ride Gem of Scotland and four others in trial at Toowoomba – wasn’t the Gem impressive too, coming come her last six hundred in 34 and a half under triple wraps to beat open company horses with her head on her chest –  has one short of a full book at Warwick tomorrow afternoon, and then straight after the last race Jimmy the Jet’s jumping in his car and driving three hours to Caloundra (and another one home) to ride Great Keppell in the last at the Sunshine Coast.

He has a hell of a work ethic this young man, and without meaning to he gives out a pretty good tip too. No-one is going to make a 4 hour round trip to ride one horse at a meeting unless it’s either Gem of Scotland or a better than fair chance to win a lowly Class 4 at the Sunny Coast on a Friday night.

Given that Great Keppell is not Gem of Scotland, it must therefore be a better than fair chance of winning, so I’d suggest getting on the Trent and Toby Edmonds runner number 5 in race 6 and backing it for plenty.

Don’t say that jockey Jim didn’t give us all the tip.

Death on the Track – The Tragic Tale of a Slow Gelding Named Gallopinkas

 

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I’m not quite sure that Gallopinkas was actually swabbed after it competed in the last race at Nanango on Saturday afternoon.

It would have been a good trick, because the horse was dead.

A sick feeling in my guts tells me that it probably shouldn’t have been.

The late Gallopinkas had been fractious behind the barriers prior to the start of Race 6, and had banged into the barriers and dislodged its jockey Melissa Cox. The horse took off, and crashed into the outside rail before being recaptured. I’m not quite sure how far it had run.

After it was caught Gallopinkas was taken back behind the barriers to be examined by the vet Dr Samantha Morrow.

Dr Morrow works at the Nanango Vet Surgery. There are four vets who work out of that practice. Two specialise in working with cattle, one with horses, and another with small animals.

Dr Morrow is the vet who specialises in treating small animals. Cats, dogs, rabbits, guinea pigs, animals around that size.

Horses like Gallopinkas are quite a bit larger.

The vet inspected the runaway double crash victim and declared the horse fit to run.

At the 400m mark Gallopinkas blundered badly. The horse that has just minutes before cannoned into the outside rail had broken down in the near shoulder.

He was humanely euthanised.

Killed.

The swabs were post-mortem samples.

Gallopinkas was the second horse to die on a Queensland race track last weekend.

It is two far too many.

Editor’s note: Queen of Kingston was also euthanised after breaking down in Race 5 at Eagle Farm on Saturday. It had not been inspected by the vet prior to the race, and was not swabbed after.

 

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Unknown Jockey Tobe Advised Rides a Winner on Debut at the Sunshine Coast, Where it Was Raining

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This is the official Stewards Report from the Sunshine Coast on Sunday.

It’s published a couple of hours after the last race.

I guess it needs a bit of revision.

I can give the Stewards a hand.

Devlann was to be ridden by Brad Stewart, but he hurt his foot during the running of the fourth race (6 races back, just in case the calculator’s on the blink), and got stood down for the day by the club Doc.

Matthew McGillivray was the replacement jockey.

He did a good job too, because he and his new mate Devlann won the race.

The QRIC Stewards finished tailed off last.

I’ll pop you the bill in the post Commissioner.

Winners are Grinners as Yet Another QRIC Trots Match Fixing Prosecution Bites the Dust

The word out of the George Street courts complex yesterday is that the second attempt at prosecuting former champion harness race driver Shane Graham for match fixing has just been thrown out of the District Court on its arse.

We don’t have all the details yet, but apparently the very well respected Judge Julie Dick has said no show poloko to the Director of Public Prosecutions lawyers who had gone back for a second bite at the cherry against Graham after his first trial last year was declared a no race by a hung jury.

I don’t know what this means for Graham’s future in the sport, but surely, after all that he’s been put through over the past few years and the absolute zero that his accusers have achieved, he should be handed his license back by two hour express delivery this morning.

As for Commissioner Ross Barnett and his band of merry men who so vigorously tapped Shane’s phone, pursued him mercilessly and publicly vilified him as a race track crook and a max-fixing cheat?

I guess we will just have to wait for the decision in the multi-million dollar defamation and damages suits that the smart money says a certain top-end of town law firm are about to start serving on some well-know organisations and high-profile individuals in the months not too far ahead.

Look before you leap is my advice to the Integrity boys and girls. That and make sure that in your eagerness to nab a scalp or seven you never jump in too soon.

Fools rush in where angels fear to tread, and phone tappers who go at the clock tower will never know what they might have missed out on.

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Well, Well, Well – Damian Raedler Has Left the Albion Park Building – Now Finally the Trots Might Turn a Profit

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The reports out of the Albion Park bunker are that Executive Manager Damian Raedler, the one time telecom technician to the stars and TAB agent to the bizarre, who lead the club to a record six successive years of financial losses and slashed its asset base by a third, has left the Yulestar Street building forever, and in quite a hurry too they say.

Our spies tell us that the new energy brought to the boardroom table by recently elected banker Brad Steele and businessman Greg Mitchell wasn’t quite to the comfort-loving Mr Raedler’s taste, so rather than up the tempo and pace of his management of the place he did what incompetent bosses who’ve had it too good for too long do in situations like these.

Bailed out.

Immediately.

The word is that when do little Damian submitted his resignation to the board meeting held last week more than a few club directors had to restrain from smiling, but it didn’t stop them from saying ‘Thanks for losing us all that dough Bucko. Resignation accepted, notice period waived, now get on your bike”.

One wag around town is suggesting that the club build a well in the middle of the infield at the creek, whack a singlet around it and a comb-over on top, and call it Damian in honour of the great man’s service.

Another joker likes the idea, but takes it a step further by advocating that the club create a unique annual race for aged claimers in honour of Raedler’s service to harness racing at the Creek. He wants them to call it the ”Remembering Damian Raedler’s Handicap”, and suggests that instead of paying prize money to the connections of the winner the club instead give them ten thousand dollars in cash to throw down the well.

Albion Park Chairman David Fowler – who is yet to publicly announce the departure of the club’s long-term leader – wasn’t available for comment. He’s probably down at the pokies.

Finance Manager Kylie Deegan has stepped into the acting role as Chief Executive while a nation wide search for Raedler’s replacement is undertaken. As a former Suncorp manager she knows how to balance a set of accounts, so with a bit of luck – and as long as Raedler doesn’t do another Nellie Melba – this year the club’s books might actually end up in the black.

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