Day At The Track
Search Results
1 to 16 of 86
1 2 3 4 5 Next »

Multiple Group winner Leos Best was crowned the UBET 2017 Queensland Harness Racing Horse of the Year in Brisbane on Sunday night, with three-time winner Avonnova dethroned for the first time since 2014.   The win capped off a memorable night for Leos Best’s trainer-driver Grant Dixon, who went home with six individual awards including a sixth-straight Queensland Trainer of the Year title, and the Harness Racing Australia Trainer of the Year Award. It was also a memorable night for owners Kevin and Kay Seymour, who took home multiple awards. Mr Seymour said he got a thrill out of taking Leos Best south to win a Group 2 at Menangle in February.  "He won well there agaisnt the very top horses down south," he said.  "I think that's what leads (trainer) Grant (Dixon) to thinking he can go down and take on the major feature events as a five-year-old."   Leos Best finished ahead of stablemate Colt Thirty One, Bettorthanspecial and Avonnova to claim the coveted title, after earlier claiming the Queensland Aged Pacer of the Year Award.   The 2016/17 season was one to savour for the connections of Leos Best, which started 20 times for 13 wins and three minor placings, including three wins in Group company.   Melpark Royal Son was crowned Queensland Trotter of the Year, in a season which included eight of the horse’s nine career wins, with the highlight being the $40,000 Group 2 DJ Alexander Championship Final at Albion Park in December.   Bettorthanspecial was crowned Queensland Filly or Mare of the Year, with Colt Thirty One (2YO Pacer), Clintal Do (3YO Pacer) and Bronski Gorgeous (Broodmare) among other equine winners on the night.   Australian World Drivers Championship representative Shane Graham was recognised as Queensland Driver of the Year for a third-straight year, after guiding home 185 winners en route to winning the Queensland Drivers’ Premiership.  "I was one told the first premiership is the easiest and every one after that is hard," Graham said. "Once you win that first one you have to keep bettering yourself." Nathan Dawson was crowned Queensland Concession Driver of the Year, and received an award for winning the Redcliffe Drivers’ Premiership.   The Owner of the Year title went to Shannon Price (Raboki Pty Ltd), while Kevin and Kay Seymour’s Solid Earth Pty Ltd was recognised as Queensland Breeder of the Year. ‘Freak of the Creek’ Destreos was inducted into the Hall of Fame, alongside trainer/driver Graeme Bowyer, breeder Mark Lichtwark and associate Gary Keep.   Each of the three harness clubs also presented awards to the leading participants and horses at their respective tracks in 2016/17. All winners on the night are listed below. 2017 UBET Queensland Harness Horse of the Year Leos Best   Seelite Windows and Doors Trotter of the Year Melpark Royal Son   Trainer of the Year Grant Dixon   Driver of the Year Shane Graham   The Courier-Mail Filly/Mare of the Year Bettorthanspecial   International Animal Health Products Aged Pacer of the Year Leos Best   3YO Pacer of the Year Clintal Do   Australian Pacing Gold 2YO Pacer of the Year Colt Thirty One   QRIC Broodmare of the Year Bronski Gorgeous QRIC Breeder of the Year Solid Earth Pty Ltd (Kevin and Kay Seymour)   James Boag’s Premium Owner of the Year Raboki Pty Ltd (Shannon Price)   Radio TAB Concession Driver of the Year Nathan Dawson   Sky Racing Hall of Fame Associate Inductee Gary Keep   Sky Racing Hall of Fame Breeder Mark Lichtwark   Sky Racing Hall of Fame Horse Destreos   Sky Racing Hall of Fame Trainer/Driver Graeme Bowyer Harness Racing Australia Trainer of the Year Grant Dixon   Lin and Laurie Feehly Redcliffe Pegasus Award Chris Garrard   Kevin and Kay Seymour Queensland Young Achiever Awards Leonard Cain and Narissa McMullen   BOTRA and Yatala Harness Racing Club Rising Stars Lachie Manzelmann and Taleah McMullen   BOTRA and Yatala Harness Racing Club Centurion Medal (Drivers) Shane Graham, Grant Dixon, Mathew Neilson, Pete McMullen, Nathan Dawson, Gary Whitaker and Narissa McMullen   BOTRA and Yatala Harness Racing Club Centurion Medal (Trainers) Grant Dixon, Vicki Rasmussen, Chantal Turpin, Jack Butler, Darrel Graham.   Marburg Harness Racing Club Awards – sponsored by Garrard’s  Horse of the Year: Domestic Art Drivers’ Premiership: Gary Whitaker Trainer of the Year: Tess Neaves   Redcliffe Harness Racing Club Awards – sponsored by Garrard’s  Horse of the Year: Royal Taz Drivers’ Premiership: Nathan Dawson Trainers’ Premiership: Grant Dixon Concession Driver of the Year: Nathan Dawson Mare of the Year: Flashing Good Time (NZ) and Rockstar Rikki (NZ)   Albion Park Harness Racing Club Awards – Sponsored by Garrard’s Horse of the Year: Joys A Babe Drivers Premiership: Shane Graham Trainers Premiership: Grant Dixon Owner of the Year: Solid Earth Pty Ltd (Kevin and Kay Seymour) Mare of the Year: Joys A Babe Racing Queensland

Night-time horse racing will be introduced on the Gold Coast, and two greyhound tracks opened, in a $200 million plan to stimulate the industry. An infrastructure plan, to be released by Racing Queensland today, sets out how the biggest cash injection for the sport in the state’s history will be spent. Priority projects for the next two years include a top-class lighting system for the Gold Coast Turf Club that will enable night-time events, seen as a big drawcard for locals and tourists. Racing Queensland said it was close to selecting two sites to drive the growth of greyhounds in the southeast: a purpose-built replacement home for Ipswich and a new venue for the Brisbane club. The Sunday Mail understands locations being considered include Rocklea and Bundamba. The Eagle Farm track will be improved and Townsville’s greyhound facility refurbished. Racing Queensland CEO Dr Eliot Forbes said the plan would lay the foundation for the industry’s success and growth of all three codes for future generations. “Our vision to connect people through the thrill of racing can only become reality if we deliver on the wide range of infrastructure needs and grow racing and non-racing revenue.’’ The long-term vision for trotting is to build two key locations. One will be a “state-of-the-art harness racing facility that will serve as the code’s peak metropolitan venue” with high-quality dining and bars, and cutting-edge broadcast technology, including the use of drones and go-pro cameras on each horse and driver. The other will be “a landmark secondary racing and training venue’’. The document is vague on details of the future of Albion Park. The industry’s governing body and the local Harness Club are at odds over whether it should be retained and revamped as a racetrack or redeveloped as a commercial centre to raise funds. But the infrastructure plan does say: “There would be higher potential uptake and engagement with both greyhound and harness in locations other than Albion Park.’’ Research by Roy Morgan found Albion Park was underused, with a low percentage of locals potentially interested in harness or greyhound racing. The key growth areas for patronage have been identified as the western and southern corridors between Brisbane and Ipswich and Logan/Gold Coast. The plan has identified $198 million of projects. The Racing Infrastructure Fund, held by Queensland Treasury, has $120 million available; $63 million now and the rest between 2020 and 2023. Racing Queensland aims to meet the $78 million shortfall between the RIF and the infrastructure spending target through increased betting, commercial agreements and developing assets. An example is a subdivision of the Ipswich Turf Club site to build a commercial and retail centre, including a supermarket, a service station, fast food outlets and a possible motel and/or childcare centre. “The focus is on fulfilling the infrastructure needs of industry and generating commercial income from industry assets,” Dr Forbes said. The three codes of racing contribute more than $1 billion a year to the state’s economy. But nearly 40 per cent of events in Queensland are so-called “picnic races’’ in regions, which are non-TAB events. Daryl Passmore, The Courier-Mail Reprinted with permission of The Courier Mail

Racing Queensland (RQ), with the support and endorsement of Harness Racing Australia, has secured an exciting addition to its 2017 Summer Racing Carnival, securing hosting rights to the 2017 Garrard’s Australasian Young Drivers Championship (AYDC) in South East Queensland. The AYDC is a championship series to showcase the skills of the best young drivers aged under-25 from each racing jurisdiction in Australia and New Zealand. The 10 competitors will comprise the Defending Champion (Todd McCarthy), plus one driver representing each Australian jurisdiction, one representing New Zealand and one from each of the North and South Islands of New Zealand. The Albion Park Harness Racing Club and Redcliffe Harness Racing Club will play host to the nine-race series, across three meetings from December 12-16. RQ’s Chief Executive Officer, Dr Eliot Forbes said the event would provide Queensland with another unique opportunity to highlight the state’s harness racing to a domestic and international audience. “Hosting the 2017 Garrard’s AYDC help to promote drivers as heroes of the sport, and I look forward to welcoming the future champions of harness racing upon their arrival,” he said. Long-time supporters of the Queensland racing industry across all three codes, Garrard’s has come on board as the series’ major sponsor for 2017. “Garrard’s is excited to partner with Racing Queensland and Harness Racing Australia to present the 2017 AYDC.  A key driver for our involvement is the development of junior participants to help sustain participation in the industry for many years to come,” a Garrard’s spokesman said. The young drivers will be involved in a range of off-track activities to connect with the wider community, to ensure a cultural and developmental experience. The event will also provide opportunities for the young drivers to build a strong profile through digital and social media channels, while building new contact networks within Queensland. Drivers will be welcomed on Tuesday, December 12, before heading to the picturesque bayside town of Redcliffe for the first race meet of the series. Redcliffe Harness Racing Club president Bernie Ring said the club was thrilled to share in the excitement of the series, and invited the local community to be trackside for the opening clashes. “This is right up there with one of the most exciting events to be held at Redcliffe since I’ve been involved with the club,” he said. “It’s another opportunity to put Queensland harness racing in the spotlight across the country, after Queenslander Shane Graham’s excellent display in the World Driving Championships in Canada. “This event presents as a great opportunity for the Redcliffe community to connect with our sport, and spectators will be lucky enough to witness some of the best young drivers in the world compete.” The final six races of the series will be held at the Albion Park Harness Racing Club (APHRC) in Brisbane. APHRC chairman David Fowler said the club looked forward to showcasing the sport in Queensland. “The Albion Park Club is delighted to be co-hosting the 2017 Garrard’s Australasian Young Driver’s Championship with Racing Queensland and the Redcliffe Club, that will see the cream of harness racing’s national young talent campaigning in South East Queensland during mid-December 2017,” he said.  The excitement will continue to build through September and October, when the driver’s from each jurisdiction are announced.  by Racing Queensland

In an effort to meet the needs of the modern racing fan and engage the next generation of punter, Racing Queensland (RQ) and the Albion Park Harness Racing Club (APHRC) will trial a new 1119m – one lap – race at Tuesday meetings from September. The exciting new format will be known as the Triple-One-Nine Torpedo presented by Kevin and Kay Seymour, with eight speedy types to tear around the track in little more than one minute. For participants, the races will carry an additional $1000 in stakes thanks to the generous support of long-time harness racing backers, Kevin and Kay Seymour. “Kay and I are delighted to sponsor this initiative in an endeavour to attract the younger generation of wagering enthusiasts by way of this up tempo mode of racing in an effort to enhance the industry's market-share of the available discretionary dollar,” harness racing benefactor Kevin Seymour AM stated. RQ General Manager of Racing Simon Stout said the races, featuring a minor rule tweak, would add an additional element of excitement to sprints. “A maximum of eight horses will start in each race,” he said. “Seven horses will begin from the front row, with one horse effectively floating in the back row. That horse will be able to follow any runner it likes from the beginning.” The races aim to offer more variety to distance ranges in the harness code, which currently races over 1660m, 2138m, 2647m, 2680m and 3157m at Albion Park. The races will be trialled over a three-month period, beginning on Tuesday, 5 September 2017. “RQ will work closely with our broadcast partner, Sky Racing, to maximise the effectiveness of these races,” Mr Stout said. The trial comes after RQ recently announced it would publish individual horse sectional times data on its website, following every Albion Park and Redcliffe TAB meeting. “This data has already been welcomed by form students and will be a vital tool for finding a winner in the new sprint races,” Mr Stout said. Race programme for Albion Park, Tuesday 05 September 2017

Stewards opened an inquiry into the tactics adopted by harness racing driver Scott Rains on Illawong Lively in Race 5 at Albion Park on Tuesday, 15 August 2017. After taking evidence from Mr Rains, viewing the official race footage and giving regard to their own observations, stewards issued a charge under the provisions of Australian Harness Racing Rule 149(2) which reads: “A person shall not drive in a manner which in the opinion of the stewards is unacceptable.” Particulars of the charge being, that as the driver of Illawong Lively in Race 5 at Albion Park on Tuesday, 15 August 2017 Mr Rains drove in a manner which in the opinion of the stewards was unacceptable in that between approximately the 1700 metres and 1300 metres he issued a sustained challenge for the lead when that position was clearly unavailable and again challenged for the lead from near the 900 metres resulting in the gelding giving ground from approximately the 450 metres to be beaten in excess of 26 metres. Mr Rains pleaded guilty to the charge as issued. After considering submissions regarding penalty stewards suspended Mr Rains’ licence to drive in races for a period of four weeks to commence midnight, 23 August 2017. Stewards advised Mr Rains of his right to an internal review. Stewards Report Scott Rains Date:  21 August 2017 Panel:  S Shinn (Chair), K Wolsey, K Daly ............................................................................................................................   Stewards Report Darrel Graham Stewards today concluded an inquiry adjourned from Tuesday, 15 August 2017 into the driving tactics adopted by Darrel Graham, driver of Corrinyah Conman in Race 3 at Albion Park on that day. After taking evidence from Mr Graham, viewing the official race footage and giving regard to their own observations, stewards issued a charge under the provisions of Australian Harness Racing Rule 149(2) which reads: “A person shall not drive in a manner which in the opinion of the stewards is unacceptable.” Particulars of the charge being, that as the driver of Corrinyah Conman in Race 3 at Albion Park on Tuesday, 15 August 2017, Mr Graham drove in a manner which in the opinion of the stewards was unacceptable in that shortly after the start he restrained that gelding from a favourable one out one back trailing position to a less favourable position three back on the marker peg line to finish in sixth place beaten 8.8 metres. Mr Graham pleaded not guilty. Stewards considered Mr Graham’s submissions in support of his plea, however were of the view that the charge could be sustained and formally found him guilty of the charge as issued.  Under the circumstances Stewards deemed the appropriate penalty be a suspension of Mr Graham’s licence to drive in races for a period of 4 weeks commencing midnight, 22 August 2017. Mr Graham was advised of his rights to an internal review. Date:  21 August 2017 Panel:  S Shinn (Chair), K Wolsey, K Daly

Saturday's Australian Pacing Gold (APG) Brisbane Graduates Final for the first time has been granted harness racing Group 1 status featuring stakes of $100,000. The APG initiative, supported by Racing Queensland, was introduced to incentivise purchases at the Brisbane Sale.  The decision has been a winner providing buyers with an achievable target in their own state in addition to the main APG finals for $350,000 and breeders with increased sales prices.  In 2014, prior to the introduction of the race, the sales average was $11,147, in 2017 this grew by 68% to just under $19,000. To-date the Fillies have had the wood on the colts with Georgia Grace victorious in 2015, and Jossie James in 2016. The early market from UBET suggests this trend could well continue, with the James Rattray-trained Arts Treasure the $1.90 favourite.  Form analysist Darren Clayton concurs with the market placing Arts Treasure on top following her recent win in the QBRED Fillies final with the Mark Dux trained Pinup Boy his second elect. FULL PREVIEW OF THE ALBION PARK MEETING HERE The field for this year’s final including purchase price is outlined below;   Horse Sire Dam Purchase Price ($) Pinup Boy  Sportswriter Victree Bette $30,000 Gone Bust Grinfromeartoear The Third Category $13,000 Ark Patrol Grinfromeartoear Ark De Jeanne $28,000 (Reserve - Passed in) Arts Treasure Roll With Joe Art Start $21,000 Sister Feelgood Mr Feelgood Likeness $13,000 Mickee Cullen Christian Cullen English Elegance $60,000 Zindel Mr Feelgood Girl Of The Moment $15,000 Miss Costalot Lanercost Manhattan Montana $24,500 Kathleen Grace Mr Feelgood Magic In Motion $15,000 Digby Diva Shadow Play Evelyn Dee $8,000 (Reserve - Passed In) Naughtynheaven Rock N Roll Heaven My King Of Girl $22,000   The APG Brisbane Graduate Final is race 6 (8.10pm) of a strong 10-race card which commences at 5.43pm. Racing Queensland Fields for Albion Park, Saturday 12 August 2017 Form guide for Albion Park, Saturday 12 August 2017 Race programme for Albion Park, Saturday 12 August 2017

Let's hope it's the promised sunny day. What better warm conditions for a trip to the Marburg trots. Catch today's harness racing action close up on the 700 metre show ground circuit. It's country trotting at its best, with the "pick the card" jackpot standing at $1150 and lucky gate prize of $100 free bet with Marburg's bookie to cater for those who like a punt. For the fun lovers who still like a flutter, there is a multi prize raffle, The "Funny Money" bookie and associated auction after the last. Admission is adults $5, pensioners and students $3 and race books $3. Under the radar success Publicity and recognition in harness racing are strange things. Some avoid it, some court it and others, no matter what they do, never seem to get it. Sometimes onlookers wonder why this third category exists and ponder the reasons for such a situation. Meanwhile, a number of highly competent trainers soldier on. Their week in, week out efforts hardly raise a ripple. Steven Cini, born in 1966 and learning his trade from his late father, the charismatic Lou Cini, was first licenced in the 1984/85 season. If numbers were all that told the story, his start was impressive, having only three runners in his first two years, all of which were successful. Time has rolled on since. His team has slowly and steadily increased in numbers. No acknowledged stars but a succession fit pacers carried the black jacket, white sleeves and red maltese cross to regular cheques. The lifetime stats some 32 years on are impressive. Starters 11,498, winners 1337, seconds 1371, thirds 1329 with the bank balance at $2,830,273 and the all important "return per starter" sitting at $246.15. The graph is upward and steep these days with the season drawing to a close, showing figures of 377 runners and income of $336,916. Every time a Steve Cini horse goes round, from a statistical perspective, $893.67 jumps in. "All the world loves a winner". It's true enough but I stopped reading a high profile Trots publication years ago on the grounds that anyone reading it as their source of information could be excused for assuming that, Australia wide, there were probably no more than 20 people training and driving light harness horses. At that time, this country boasted something in the order of 8,000 licencees. Who the vast majority were, and what they achieved, we were never told. Steve Cini falls in that category. He kicks goals every week, but the selectors don't want to know. Redwood celebration FANS of the traditional, diagonal gaited trotter might want to find a Sky Channel screen from 11.30am tomorrow. It is the annual celebration of the trotter, "Redwood Day" at Maryborough in Victoria. There will even be a special events train, carrying 200 fans to the track. This additional crowd boost will further ensure the success of the 32nd staging of the carnival, which started in 1985. It features the Group 1 Seelite Windows & Doors $50,000 Redwood Classic for 2yo's at 2.44pm on Sunday, followed by the $75,000 Group 1 Seelite Windows & Doors Victoria Trotters Derby at 3.54pm. Neither feature carries a fortune in prize money by today's standards, but the prestige conveyed by a win in either event is "a pearl without price." Calvert-based Ray Cross will have last start Ballarat winner Honey Please engaged in Race 2. We wish him the best. Handy tips SELECTIONS for Albion Park tonight. R1: Box trifecta 1-4-8: Withalotofluck (C. Cini)- Philanderer (M. Neilson)- Village Witch (N. McMullen). R2: E/w 2: Strawberry Courage (G. Dwyer). R3: Quinella 2-6: Mafuta Vautin (A. Sanderson) and Polished Rocks (M. Neilson). R4: E/w 3: Pompidou (G. Dixon). R5: Box trifecta 2-3-6: Royal Jacquard (N. Dawson)- Ichon Blue (D. Cernovskis)- Drive The Dream (A. Sanderson). R6: E/w 3: Major Kiwi (T. Moffat). R7: E/w 1: Drifting Away (S. Graham). R8: Box trifecta 2-3-4: Majestic Major (G. Dixon)- Ohoka Colorado (S. Graham)-Major Cam (M. Neilson). R9: Box trifecta in four 1-2-6-8: I'm Not Eyre (J. Rattray)- Four Shares More Beers (G. Dixon)- Justabitnoisy (D. Lee)-Monorail (R. Jenkins). Marburg picks: R1 - 2-5-3. R2: 4-5-7. R3: 1-3-7. R4: 1-3-5. R5: 5-1-8. R6: 3-2-1. Honour board CONSISTENCY is the key word on the board this week with the lower Brisbane Valley to the fore. Darrell Graham (Fernvale) notched six winners for the week, including a Saturday night treble. A stone's throw away at Glamorganvale, Nathan Dawson rang up five winning drives to edge out his cousin Narissa McMullen on four. All three stars posted trebles. Most pleasing was Adam Richardson steering Franco Totem to an easy win on Wednesday night at Redcliffe. Albion Park, July 28: Illdoitwhenimready (Chantal Turpin); None Bettor (Nathan Dawson for Donny Smith); Tuesdays Fella (Nathan Dawson for Trevor Lambourn); Vande Velde (Nathan Dawson for Jason Mackrill); Wattlebank Flyer (Hayden Barnes for Chantal Turpin). Albion Park, July 29: Montana Falcon (Adam Sanderson for Darrell Graham); Culley Backy (Adam Sanderson for Darrell Graham); Broadway Playboy (Adam Sanderson for Darrell Graham). Albion Park, August 1: Northern Muscle (Denis Smith); Fakerocknroll (Gary Whitaker for Bill Crosby); Corey ODonohue (Narissa McMullen for Ron Sallis); Magnussen (Lachie Manzelmann for Darrell Graham); Oceans Predator (Matt Elkins for Greg Elkins). Redcliffe, August 2: Gidup Spanish Red (Nathan Dawson for Donny Smith); Ima Top Tycoon (Nathan Dawson for Ryan Veivers); My Ultimate Falcon (Lachie Manzelmann for Darrell Graham); Franco Totem (Adam Richardson for Darrell Graham). Redcliffe, August 3: Turbo Tufftalk (Pete McMullen for Chantal Turpin); Diamantina Devil (Narissa McMullen for Ryan Veivers); Coast Warning (Narissa McMullen); The Endeavour (Narissa McMullen for John McMullen); Ruato Bay (Chris Petroff for Ron Sallis). TROT TACTICS with Denis Smith   Reprinted with permission of The Queensland Times

The battle lines are being drawn up between the Albion Park Harness Racing Club and racing control body Racing Queensland. Like most wars, it is a dispute over territory - that territory being the Albion Park harness and dog racing complex. Like all such disputes, there will be artillery in the form of barristers and solicitors, the ammunition will be words both, verbal and written, and there will be several referees. The time frame at this point is anybody's guess. The ultimate cost, like all wars, will be staggering. The end bearers of that cost will be the harness racing participants in general and the hobbyists in particular. The greyhounds will also experience negatives from a financial aspect. Albion Park has fired the first shot with a full page advertisement in last Saturday's Courier Mail and the Brisbane City Council has made that shot more effective by rejecting RQ's current development application which does not include a racing facility. From the Sunday Mail (July 16): "In rejecting the application on Friday 14/07, BCC planning Chairman, Julian Simmonds said: 'The entire Queensland racing fraternity needs to speak as one voice on the future of Albion Park.'' The only way that racing participants will come up with a majority decision will be if the practice of full disclosure applies. At this point, "Joe Average” harness participant does not know who owns Albion Park, much less the benefits which might accrue from this current power struggle. We wait for the Minister and the Premier to supply this information. ............................................... Whip rules proposal ON a different but apparently equally taboo subject of whips, another gathering was held last week in NSW under the auspices of HRNSW. The following is taken from an interview with John Dumesny, CEO of that body. He believes that the road forward is tightening the way the whip is used, rather than an overall ban. "We have to be aware of the public and community standards about the whip and its use,” Dumesny said. "The whip itself is not cruel, it is the way it is used that can be seen to be cruel. "The drivers see it as a safety and integrity issue for the sport, and it is important to wagering and punters' confidence. We need to modify the rules to move with community expectations, but at the same time maintain safety and integrity concerns.'' A whip convention last week, with drivers, trainers and administrators from every state attending, worked towards a set of rules acceptable to all. Dumesny said consistency was the most important factor in whip rules, so they could be applied across every meeting in Australia. "We have told HRA that the whip will be continued . . . in NSW, but we don't want to get to the stage where there are different rules in different states,'' he said. "What we are looking towards is what is called a wrist-only method of using the whip. We held the convention last week, where there was a consensus that we need to work on the whip rules. It was a very good discussion from everyone involved from around the country. In the afternoon session the drivers got in a gig and showed their whip action as it is now, and how they would see it under changes to the rules. "We feel we have the support of the other states and continue to work with them, and there will be another meeting this week to get the right outcomes. "The main thing we want to work towards is something that is easily understandable and enforced by stewards.” The sad part is that for all the positive vibes coming from this move by NSW, none of the more vociferous supporters of cruelty free racing in the Sunshine State would have been aware of this particular convention, much less be invited to contribute to the discussion. Well managed THE late Tony Price was often the source of accurate comment. At a Botra meeting some years back, the "Big Fella” stated that Queensland was the easiest state for a horse to win $100,000. A quick check of stats for Darrell Graham's cash cow, Montana Falcon, indicate that lifetime earnings from 163 starts, stand at $209,995. The super impressive factor is that Montanta Falcon is still assessed at M0. That's well managed. Handy tips SELECTIONS for Albion Park tonight. R1: Quinella 4-12: Only The Brave (T. Dixon) and Montana Falcon (D. Graham). R2: Box trifecta 2-5-10: Any chance (D. Weeks)-Timmo Time (A.Sanderson)-Bettor Be Lucky (M. Neilson). R3: Box trifecta 1-8-10: Munroe (NA)-Written In Red (P. Diebert)-Lancelot Bromac (N. Dawson). R4: E/w 2: Philanderer (M. Neilson). R5: Quinella 1-3: Bettor Promise (M. Neilson) and Always Prompt (T. Dixon). R6: Quinella 4-6: Jerrys Jet (R. Thurlow) and Verdot (D. Cernovskis). R7: Box trifecta 1-4-7-9: Shardons Sheralee (J. Rattray)-Counterfeit Cash (G.Dixon)-Wicked Time (S. Graham)-Spare The Price (A. Frisby). R8: Box trifecta 3-1-6: Comply Or Die (N. Dawson)-Lombo Ranmiles (G. Whitaker)-Threo (C. Turpin). R9: Box trifecta 4-5-6: Majestic Major (G Dixon)-Majestic Mach (I Ross)-Alleluia (T Dixon). Honour board Tess Neaves, Chantal Turpin, and Trevor Lambourn led the way with two winners apiece. Nathan Dawson and Gary Whitaker shared driving honours posting thee winners each. Most pleasing was Tess Neaves' double at Albion Park on Thursday. Albion Park, July 14: Threo (Chantal Turpin); Heavens Hint (Nathan Dawson for Stewie Dickson); Lighting Colony (Gary Whitaker for Donny Smith); Nolonga Your Choice (Trevor Lambourn); Ashton K (Gary Whitaker for Trevor Lambourn); Village Cruiser (Adam Richardson for Dave Russell). Albion Park, July 18: Tygar (Adam Sanderson for Joe Taafe); Destreos (Kelli Dawson for Kenny Rattray); I'm The Golden Child (Dean Cernovskis for Megan Cockburn); Montana Falcon (Adam Sanderson for Darrell Graham). Redcliffe, July 19: Weedons Express (Taleah McMullen for John McMullen); Cheers Kathy (Brittany Graham for Darrell Graham); Slippery Jade (Gary Whitaker for Bill Crosby); Mach Torque (Chantal Turpin). Albion Park, July 20: Princess Jessica (Nathan Dawson for Doug Lee); Hammerhoff (Nathan Dawson for Narissa McMullen); Riverleigh Jeff (Steve Doherty for Tess Neaves); Call Me Yours (Steve Doherty for Tess Neaves); Gallymont Sport (Trent Dawson); Surface To Air (Greg Elkins). TROT TACTICS with Denis Smith Reprinted with permission of The Queensland Times

Racing Queensland has announced prizemoney increases of $3.2 million for next financial year across the three codes of racing. RQ chief executive Eliot Forbes said the injection was a result of better-than-forecast returns from wagering. He said that while the control body will still post a financial loss this year, the board was mindful of “enhancing participants’ returns.” It is the first increase in prizemoney for Queensland racing since the Tracking to Sustainability reforms made cuts across the board last year. The thoroughbred code has been allocated $2.28 million of the boost, with a ninth race, valued at $30,000, set to be added to all Saturday metropolitan programs and provincial prizemoney at the Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast and Ipswich boosted to $16,000 (excluding maidens). Harness racing will receive an additional $505,000, with an allocation boosting Redcliffe’s Wednesday and Thursday programs to have five races at $4450 and three at $3450. Greyhound racing will receive $415,000 in extra money, with increases of $40-$80 to all short course non-metropolitan class TAB meetings. “Improved wagering turnover and changes to the Race Information Fee (RIF) framework have enhanced revenue and a continued focus on costs will lead to a much-improved financial result for 2016/17,” Forbes said. “RQ has a strategic goal over the next three years to boost prize money in a sustainable manner and to continue to invest in significant infrastructure projects across all three codes, while working with clubs to improve attendance and commercial returns.” By Nathan Exelby Reprinted with permission of The Courier-Mail  

Boom pacer San Carlo is on trial for the Queensland harness racing winter carnival. The outstanding Victorian gelding, fresh from his success last weekend at Bendigo, is being considered for the final leg of the 2016/17 Australian Pacing Gold Grand Circuit season – the Gr.1 $200,000 UBET Blacks A Fake on July 15. It’s the biggest event staged in Queensland, the 2680m mobile start feature takes place at Albion Park. And co-trainers Steve O’Donoghue and Rebecca Bartley are very interested in dipping their toe in the water with their rising star. A winner of 14 races from 16 starts, the Mach Three six-year-old gelding made a massive statement when he demoralised his rivals last Saturday night at Lords Paceway after sitting wide throughout before racing clear over the concluding stages. San Carlo scored easily by 5m while rating 1:55.4 for the 2150m. “That was a big step forward into making Brisbane a reality, he performed in such a great manner and Steve thinks the Blacks A Fake is a good target for him but he’s got to prove himself once more before any decision is made.” Bartley said. And that next assignment comes up next Thursday (June 22). San Carlo will start in the Leo Crameri at Maryborough, a race that has historically produced plenty of high quality performers. The event will be staged over 2190m. “That’s his next target and it’s likely he will meet plenty of classy rivals but it will also tell us if Brisbane is one or off. A victory will go a long way in making the northern trip a reality, Brisbane will be tough but it looks a good opportunity for him. “I don’t think he shocked us in anyway last week because we’ve known for some time how good he really is but to do it in the manner in which he did was the best part. He was really strong. “And that’s his best asset; he’s a very strong horse.” O’Donoghue, the boss of Morley Park (of Classic Garry fame), believes San Carlo is the best horse he has worked with and rates him higher than Barclay Court (23 wins – $99k) and Triple Vance (20 wins - $182k). San Carlo is raced by John Eichhorn. Chris Barsby

IT was great news for the Ipswich Turf Club securing a $13 million grant to enable vital reconstruction to the racing surface and provide upgrades to the infrastructure. Completion of the proposed projects should put the ITC on the highway to self sufficiency for the foreseeable future. The Gold Coast Turf Club is also said to be in the pipeline for major funding, with a view to a similar happy conclusion. Meanwhile, in the world of harness, a battle rages between rival interests as to the future of Albion Park. On one side, we have self made property and share tycoon Mr Kevin Seymour considered a "demi-god" by some harness participants, and something rather different by others, taking up the cudgels on the part of Albion Park Harness Racing Club. He is treasurer. In the other corner is Racing Queensland, currently holding a healthy $63 million of infrastructure funding to be applied to the immediate needs of harness and greyhounds. Both contestants, we are told, are seeking the same end result as the two gallops clubs mentioned above. Unfortunately, the battle can not be decided in one encounter as it is somewhat complex in nature. At this point in time, we must not consider the greyhounds. They have considerable and genuine claims to a large slab of the $63 million as they are the only racing code in profit and expanding steadily. Their presence in the Albion Park debate would only muddy the waters. It seems there will be some form of development on the site. Seymour proposes that the development consist of a world class racing facility supported by a housing development and a "Racino" (gaming machines, bars and a return of Silks restaurant, which vanished when WATPAC demolished the main grandstand at the venue seven years ago). Racing Queensland favours a commercial, residential and retail development aimed at maximising non-racing revenue. The first matter to be decided however is who owns Albion Park. Seymour claims that "harness racing has the moral high ground because it owned the venue until the merger of the three codes in 2010". It is time that the Minister and the Premier became involved in this. They should call for all the documents relating to transfers of the title of Albion Park over the past 30 years, and make a determination of ownership based solely on that documentation. A time frame of one week should be sufficient for that process. Starting from any other point guarantees failure of the enterprise and a waste of valuable dollars. Marburg place to be TODAY'S Marburg trot meeting offers a great afternoon's racing to escape the hustle bustle of daily life. The action starts about 11am with trials, where racegoers can grab a burger and coffee or a beer and kick back to enjoy harness racing on the up-close and visual 700 metre Marburg Showground circuit. Racing begins at noon with seven races to be run. A lucky gate prize of a $100 bet is on offer on the local trots, with multiple prize raffles and a Fast Work Horse Supplies "pick the card'' competition with $1050 for someone clever enough, or lucky enough to pick the card. Entry is $5, with pensioners and students in for $3. The magic race book for $3 contains the pick the card entry. Everyone is welcome. Handy tips SELECTIONS for Albion Park tonight. R1: E/w 1: Our Millwood Maizie (M. Neilson). R2: Quinella 1-2: A Good Chance (C. Petroff) and My Master Craftsman) A. Sanderson). R3: Quinella 1-3: Deano Robyn (G. Dixon) and Gallymont Sport (T. Dawson). R4: Quinella 1- 2: Remember Ruby (G. Dixon) and War Dan Appollo (T. Moffat). R5: E/w 2: Border Cross (S. Graham). R6: E/w 3: Rory Mach (D. Graham). R7: E/w 4: Waste Of Time (D. McMullen). R8: Quinella 4-12: Fire One (G. Dixon) and The Charging Moa (S. Graham). R9: E/w 3: Cheers Kathy (D. Graham). R10: Box trifecta in four 1-4-8-10: Dr Hook (T. Gillespie)-Four Shares More Beers (G. Dixon)-Melpark Royal Son (J. Cremin)-Our Dainty Lady (D. Graham). Marburg selections for today: Race 1 - 2-8-1. Race 2: 7-2-3. Race 3: 1-3-4. Race 4: 1-2-3. Race 5: 1-6-3. Race 6: 1-2-3. Race 7: 3-4-5. Honour board Narissa McMullen scored on four occasions in the sulky this week. Chantal Turpin led in a trio of winners for the barn at Patrick Estate. Redcliffe, June 2: The Shady One (Trevor Lambourn); Hokonui Ben (Chris Petroff for Trevor Lambourn); Sicilian Slumber Narissa McMullen for Chantal Turpin). Albion Park, June 3: Lancelot Bromac (Danielle McMullen for Stewie Dickson); Timmo Time (Adam Sanderson for Shawn Grimsey); Our Leonardo (Kelli Dawson for Ray Law); Supaliner (Darrell Graham); Village Switch (Narissa McMullen for Steve Cini); Our Dainty Lady (Darrell Graham). Albion Park, June 6: El Swavo (Clint Sneddon for Frank Bennett); Well Disguised (Narissa McMullen for Steve Cini); Bull Market (Pete McMullen for Chantal Turpin). Redcliffe, June 7: Stayintowntonight (Gary Whitaker for Bill Crosby); Havetogetawaymore (Al Barnes); Precious M (Lachie Manzelmann for Ron Sallis). Redcliffe, June 8: Riene Des Gitans (Pete McMullen for Chantal Turpin); Flashing Good Time (Narissa McMullen for John McMullen); Phantom Rockstar (Gary Whitaker for Kevin Joiner). TROT TACTICS with Denis Smith Reprinted with permission of The Queensland Times.

Harness racing benefactor and property tycoon Kevin Seymour has unveiled plans to develop Brisbane’s Albion Park racetrack into a “world-class facility”. The proposed development would not require any monetary input from Racing Queensland. Albion Park Harness Racing Club would bear the costs of the work which would include high-end housing development, a new stand, a first-class gaming facility, community hub and football field in the centre of the track. The move is the latest in the battle between RQ and the harness industry over the prized property, with both parties at odds over who is the legal owner of the land. Mr Seymour is convinced the club is the rightful owner of the venue and the deal is contingent on RQ agreeing to this. He believes harness racing has the moral high ground because it owned the venue until the merger of the three codes in 2010. His proposal comes only weeks after the club claimed it was blindsided by RQ over their plans to demolish the racetrack and build a commercial, residential and retail hub on the site worth an estimated $100 million. RQ chief executive Dr Eliot Forbes last month said RQ’s plan to redevelop the site was needed to provide another revenue stream for the cash-strapped body. “The ongoing sustainability and growth of racing in Queensland depends on the generation of non-racing revenue and the full realisation of commercial opportunities,” he said. Mr Seymour disagreed, saying his proposed development would “launch harness racing into the next century”. He said there would be numerous revenue streams from the housing development and gaming machines, along with the return of the famous Silks restaurant and bar turnover. “If you build facilities that are as good, if not better than other things in the area, people will come to it,” he said. “Any money raised at the facility would be put back into harness racing, making it stronger. “The big thing is the Harness Racing Club is not asking for any money. It’s a no brainier for harness racing in Queensland.” Breeders, Owners, Trainers & ­Reinspersons Association president Dan Costello described such a development as equivalent to that of Eagle Farm recently for thoroughbreds. “It’s great for the industry and it’s clear this sort of development will secure a future for harness racing,” he said. The plan is on an American model where race clubs with poker machines are able to pay twice the prize money for racing than those without them. Proposed also in the development is the construction of a new RQ headquarters, allowing them to move out of the dated Deagon facility. Mr Seymour insists his development plan will pass all local government and planning requirements. The track was first constructed in 1893 before it was bought out by underworld figure John Wren in 1910. Trenton Akers, The Courier-Mail Reprinted with permission of The Courier Mail

IT has been said that there is no Nana like a proud Nana. If this is the case, Beryl Dawson is this week's proudest. When three of your grandchildren drive seven of the 10 winners on a Saturday night Albion Park program it is time to feel puffed up. Even better is when the two sisters, Narissa and Danielle McMullen, each owned and trained one leg of their respective doubles. Cousin Nathan Dawson secured a treble to let us know that this was just part of a very good week for him. At last count, 11 of Beryl's direct descendants held harness licences. That's some effort Nana. I hope they take you to dinner on the strength of it. Concerning statistics LAST week I promised some frightening statistics. Here is just a segment of the problems which face harness in this country today and are as relevant to Queensland as to any other state. It is what happens to any business when the managers are not minding the shop. Future of harness racing - strategic planning research "Harness racing's viable future in Australia is at present almost totally dependant upon wagering revenue. Currently HRA and industry participant attention is focussed upon alternative handicapping/ programming initiatives that will create larger and more evenly balanced fields in order to maximize wagering turnover and revenue. No modelling exists that establishes the levels of increased wagering turnover and resultant revenue gains that will be needed to maintain and grow the sport into the future. However basic strategic planning research (non existent in HRA) clearly provides the basis to model the gap that exists between the product (racing stock) needed compared with the projected product availability over the next decade and resultant wagering increases that will be necessary. Using the official HRA statistics comparing the ten year period between seasons 2005/2006 and 2015/16 demonstrates the enormity of the task ahead.'' Total mares served 05/06 was 8,942, dropping to 5,443 in 15/16. Shortfall: 3,499. Percentage drop -39.1. Horses named in 05/06 plus overseas imports 6,118, dropping to 3,401 in 15/16. Shortfall -2717. Percentage drop -44.4. Number of individual starters in 05/06, 12,949, dropping to 10,724 in 15/16. Shortfall -2,225. Percentage drop -17.2. Number of races run in 05/06, 15,666, dropping to 14,225 in 15/16. Shortfall -1,441. Percentage drop -9.2. All four of the 15/16 figures are categorised as "the lowest ever''. The above has been collated by marketing and pedigree matching expert Ray Chaplin. Great benefits? OVER the past week, we have heard of a new and exciting future for harness in Queensland. This latest kite is flying on the back of the reported "gifting'' of the harness portion of the controversial Yatala site to the Yatala Harness Racing Club. Benefactor Kevin Seymour also mentioned the great benefits which would flow to harness from the merger of the major Tote operators with Ubet. The subject of turnover also got a mention with Seymour adamant that harness was putting a steady 12% into the tri-code turnover, rather than the 10% claimed by Racing Queensland. Of more interest to the people who can't up stakes and re-locate to Sydney or Melbourne should harness in Queensland go belly up in the near future, would be some comparison figures on the subject of distribution versus revenue. Consider the following hypothesis. If harness distributes $100 in prize money, and Racing Queensland receives only $61 in revenue from the combined turnover income streams, then, surely, harness is a basket case. These are the figures which should concern us, accompanied by practical strategies to correct the situation. One thing is certain. The new concept of a ratings system will not help us should it be adopted. The punters have not been able to handle "mobile conditioned'' from the day of its appearance. What will they do with a system which will be adjusted on a daily or weekly basis by supposed experts? Handy tips SELECTIONS for Albion Park tonight. R1: Box trifecta 1-5-10: Dabeers Zargon (G. Whitaker-Countdown (N. Dawson)-Flaming Hero (M. Elkins). R2: box trifecta 4-5-12: Bettor Promise (A. Sanderson)-Cherish The Moment (T. Dixon)-Watch Pulp Fiction (P. McMullen). R3: Quinella 1-8: Sweet As Candy (M. Elkins) and A Good Chance (C. Petroff). R4: Box trifecta 1-2-8: Im The Smoocha (G. Dixon)-Our Millwood Maizie (G. Dixon)-Remember Them (N. Dawson). R5: E/w 1: Always Prompt (G. Dixon). R6: Quinella 3-10: Mini Cam and Only In Rome (P. McMullen). R7: Quinella 1-2: Border Cross (S. Graham) and War Dan Appollo (T. Moffat). R8: Quinella 3-7: Illawong Dreamtime (Brittany Graham) and Clarkey (A. Sanderson). R9: Quinella 5-6: Hughie Green (J. Cremin) and Avonnova (S. Graham). R10: E/w 2: Annas Best (P. McMullen). Honour board It was a one-set affair this week for the drivers with Nathan Dawson taking Adam Sanderson off the pinnacle at six wins to four. Darrell Graham re-asserted himself as top trainer with a solid four winners for the term. Most of the serious winning was concentrated in the lower Brisbane Valley at Fernvale and Glamorganvale. Nathan Dawson's treble at Albion Park were all trained by Greg Elkins and Greg Franklin. Albion Park, May 19: Ice Crusher (Adam Sanderson for Darrell Graham); Rory Mach (Adam Sanderson for Darrell Graham); Crowning Glory (Isobel Ross for Greg Elkins); Top Trio (Lachie Manzelmann for Grant Dixon); Mini Cam (Stacey Weidemann for Rachel Scott); Bubbaloobah (Lola Weidemann for Dave Russell). Albion Park, May 20: Tijuana Bromac (Narissa McMullen); Countdown (Nathan Dawson for Greg Franklin); The Space Invader (Narissa McMullen for Steve Cini); Motu Real Style (Danielle McMullen); Flaming Hero (Nathan Dawson for Greg Elkins); Remember Them (Nathan Dawson for Greg Franklin); Constantly Sideways (Danielle McMullen for Bill Crosby); Sweet As Candy (Matt Elkins for Vic Frost). Albion Park, May 23: Sicilian Slumber (Pete McMullen for Chantal Turpin); Bettor Promise (Adam Sanderson for Shannon Price); Queen Zenobia (Adam Sanderson for Darrell Graham); Exceptional Mach (Pete McMullen for Chantal Turpin). Redcliffe, May 24: Red Luck (Brittany Graham for Darrell Graham); Datsgood (Gary Whitaker for Donny Smith). Redcliffe, May 25: Acer Animus (Ricky Gordon for Bob Hanrahan); Live In Style (Trent Moffat for Gregg Minns); Jimmy Nga (Gary Whitaker for Lacey Hinze); Ballator Thor (Nathan Dawson for John McMullen); Heavens Hint (Nathan Dawson for Stewie Dickson); Precious Cullen (Nathan Dawson for Graeme White). TROT TACTICS with Denis Smith Reprinted with permission of The Queensland Times

Racing Queensland (RQ) and tenants of Albion Park Raceway are in a Mexican standoff over grandiose plans for the historic harness racing course. Last weekend RQ revealed an extravagant proposal to finance construction of new tracks for the harness and greyhound codes in growth corridors to the south and west of the city through the sale of Albion Park. The Brisbane Greyhound Racing Club is happy with the RQ proposal, with the club’s chief executive Luke Gatehouse confirming the club would move “with a moment’s notice” if a new, metropolitan standard course comprising two tracks, one of which would be a straight, was constructed. “We’ve wanted our own stand-alone complex for a long time,” Mr Gatehouse said. Albion Park Harness Racing Club chairman David Fowler insists Albion Park was harness racing’s best advocate. He said he was “most reluctant” to leave the track which has been a spiritual home for harness racing since the late 1960s. “There can be no denying turnover is the lifeblood of the racing industries and the bedrock for this is metropolitan racing,” Mr Fowler said. “Albion Park has undeniable brand awareness whether it’s for harness racing or the greyhounds. “This complex hosts seven meetings a week and is the busiest of any metropolitan course in the country. “What RQ does about new tracks is out of our hands. But we need new facilities at Albion Park and that will boost this industry, because we are doing it tough and our customers have endured substandard facilities for far too long.” The Brisbane City Council has previously declared its wish that Albion Park, valued at up to $100 million, be retained for sport and recreation purposes. That was despite numerous rumours it would be developed for residential and retail use. By Alan Welburn, Quest Newspapers Reprinted with permission of Quest Newspapers  

Queensland's racing landscape is set for its biggest shake-up in decades as the sport’s governing body plans to close the gates to greyhounds and trotters at historic Albion Park and turn the site into a showpiece development. The project still faces significant hurdles but Racing Queensland has approached the Brisbane City Council and begun exploring plans for the prime Albion venue, which has hosted races for more than 120 years. RQ chief executive officer Eliot Forbes said the potential development was needed to generate significant non-racing revenue to prop up the struggling sport. “The options include possible commercial, residential and retail developments all geared to deliver a commercial return to RQ thereby protecting the balance sheet for racing into the future,” he said. “The ongoing sustainability and growth of racing in Queensland depends on the generation of non-racing revenue and the full realisation of commercial opportunities.” To realise the maximum financial gain from the site, the club has applied to the council for any development application to be considered under a superseded planning scheme. “If Council agrees to allow an application under the old scheme and RQ lodges an application, significant community and stakeholder consultation will be undertaken to help inform the range of uses, design and development outcomes on the site,” Mr Forbes said. The State Government would also need to approve any application and yesterday Racing Minister Grace Grace said no decisions about possible future uses of the site had been made. “RQ has a fiduciary duty to protect the asset value of Albion Park and I’m confident they’re meeting this obligation,” she said. “In line with this fiduciary duty and following recent changes to the local area plan, RQ has lodged a request for development application over this site under the superseded scheme. “The sole purpose of this application is to protect the asset and maintain RQ’s balance sheet. An artist’s impression of a proposed redevelopment of the Albion Park site, which might include residential and retail space. “RQ has met with Albion Park Harness Racing Club representatives to inform them of their actions.” The Sunday Mail understands the club is strongly opposed to moving harness racing from the site however representatives failed yesterday to respond to a request for comment. The fate of racing at Albion Park was sealed recently when the results of an independent study into the infrastructure needs of the two codes in southeast Queensland highlighted widespread dissatisfaction with the site. The greyhound industry was nearly unanimous in its condemnation of Albion Park and the need to find new stand-alone venues for the sport with contemporary, single-turn tracks. Harness industry participants in the study were not as united in the need to leave Albion Park and are still negotiating with RQ about their infrastructure needs. But the move from Albion Park took a step forward yesterday when RQ launched an expression of interest process to identify suitable sites in Brisbane’s southern and western corridors for new greyhound and harness racing venues. It is understood the Gold Coast and Ipswich are the preferred locations for greyhound tracks. The massive overhaul of facilities is part of RQ’s broader infrastructure program, which is being funded from the $63 million Racing Infrastructure Fund. A further $61 million is expected to be injected into the fund before 2023 from a gambling agreement. By Michael Wray, The Courier-Mail Reprinted with permission of The Courier-Mail

A Warwick man has been arrested in relation to what authorities have called a "loose cartel" of harness racing drivers and trainers involved in race fixing in Queensland. Trainer-driver Dayl March, 46 from Warwick, was this week arrested and charged with race fixing. It relates to Race 2 at Albion Park on November 12 last year, where it will be alleged March organised corruptly the outcome of that race. The 46-year-old was arrested following search warrants carried out by detectives from the Queensland Racing Crime Squad, attached to the Queensland Racing Integrity Commission. In a press conference this morning, Detective Superintendent Jon Wacker said March has had his licence suspended and was due to face Brisbane Magistrates Court on May 10. "This is the first time an arrest has been made in relation to race fixing in harness racing in Queensland and further arrests are expected to be made," he said. "Once a person is charged with an offence relating to match fixing, their licence is automatically suspended. "The commission then has the power to suspend their licence for life." The maximum penalty for race fixing - a recent addition to the Queensland Criminal Code - is 10 years imprisonment. In the past week, police have visited properties of five harness racing participants in Warwick, The Gap, Logan Village, Redcliffe and Limestone Ridges as part of the joint investigation between the QRIC, Crime and Corruption Commission and Queensland Police. Detectives seized mobile phones, computers, documents and clothing that will now be forensically examined. Queensland Racing Integrity Commissioner Ross Barnett said the investigation started just weeks after the commission was formed in July last year. "This has been a long- running investigation that highlights the importance of inter-agency co-operation," Mr Barnett said. "The investigation has identified a loose cartel of drivers and trainers involved in systemic race fixing ... who decide who will win the race and how they will win it. "We are not talking every race or even every race meeting, but certainly more than one race - it is more frequent than it is rare." Mr Barnett said there was no suggestion there was any involvement of stewards in race fixing and urged anyone aware of misconduct to come forward.  Darling Downs Harness Racing Club president Anthony Collins declined to comment.  Warwick Turf Club president Phil Grant said it was a shock to learn of the arrest this morning. "Though harness racing is separate to the thoroughbred racing, it's definitely not something we want to see Warwick in the news for," Mr Grant said. "It's not something I've ever seen before - I can't think of the last time there's been an allegation (of race fixing) in the thoroughbred industry.  "Racing Queensland brought in the commission to enforce the regulation and ensure no one is able to fix a race so now it's up to the courts to decide whether he's done the wrong thing." Mr Barnett said the commission ultimately hoped to improve confidence in the racing industry as a result of the investigation. "We think this could have a short term negative impact on confidence in the sport but in the long-term I believe this will be of benefit to the industry," he said. "This is solely the fault of the greedy and corrupt people who have participated in match fixing who have damaged the sport they participate in and claim to love. "I believe dealing with these issues will eventually lead to increased wagering confidence in the industry." Sophie Lester Reprinted with permission of  The Warick Daily News

1 to 16 of 86
1 2 3 4 5 Next »