Day At The Track

Club stalwarts honoured as record tumbles

05:50 AM 15 Feb 2018 NZDT
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Higherthananegle, harness racing
Streets ahead: Higherthananegle and reinsman David Aiken are in a class of their own as they race to the Judge in the $25,000 George Croxford Tribute

Cobram and District Harness Racing Club past presidents and stalwarts were honoured at the club’s meeting last week on a day when a long-standing record fell.

Horses sizzled on the track and master horseman David Aiken gave the young guns a lesson in driving, proving experience can not be disregarded.

Renowned as one of the fastest tracks in Victoria and southern NSW, full credit must go to track curator David Kennedy and his race day team.

The prestigious $25000 George Croxford Tribute didn’t disappoint, with elder statesman Aiken, who is rarely seen in the sulky these days, taking on the emerging young star reinsmen in the cart behind three-year-old Higherthananeagle and running the rest of the field ‘ragged’ as they raced away to break the 2010 track record for the 2170m by three-tenths of a second.

Damian Wilson snatched the driving honours for the day, scoring a double after reining the Albury mare Ismaha to a thrilling win in the Tom Stillard Memorial Pace.

The four-year-old mare now heads the club’s 2017-18 Horse of the Year Premiership after chalking up three successive wins at Cobram in the past four weeks.

Aileen Williams was trackside to present the trophy in memory of her uncle, Tom Stillard, a young man who was the fledgling club’s inaugural leader for 16 years until his untimely passing and is credited with being instrumental in forming the club more than 60 years ago.

On a day when only two of the favourites delivered, Bensonfire set the tone for the meeting in the Jim Cox Memorial Pace, the first on the program. The longshot broke the drought for patient Invergordon trainer Stuart Govers

The next race meeting is scheduled for Thursday, April 19.

Meanwhile, the course is undergoing a facelift, with new concrete paths being laid from the entrance to the TAB shed, dining room and the administration block, while new carpet is being laid in the members’ room and the drivers’ rooms floors will be spray paved.

By Courier Cobram

Reprinted with permission of The Riverine Herald

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