Jenny - Clean

IN his popular column, ‘SILKS & SADDLES,’ published by the NORTH QUEENSLAND REGISTER, respected racing writer TERRY BUTTS responds to a bagging he copped over criticism of the Home Hill Sunday race meeting recently.

Butts also reports on a Facebook comment that could land the author in hot water after he bagged the ride of a jockey at a Cluden meeting recently.

His column also contains items on the Flood Relief Meeting at Bundaberg and the return of the Beach Race Day at Mackay with questions being raised why the local Turf Club doesn’t want to get involved in the promotion.

Here is the Butts column:

FACEBOOK ACCUSATIONS OF BAGGING COUNTRY ARE INCORRECT

YOUR scribe is not a follower, nor friendly, and certainly not a fanatic of that new –age communications phenomenon Facebook - that seemingly has captivated if not invaded the world through cyberspace.

In fact he deems it one of the few benefits of old age that he has dodged yet another addiction – thankfully.

But anyway this column (and author) apparently made Facebook in less than glowing terms last week for comments about the Burdekin Race Club not having an on-course tote at its St Patrick’s Day meeting last Sunday week.

There were accusations of “bagging country racing etc.”

That, of course, is untrue, certainly the accusation is denied.

It was pointed out that the majority of punters go to the races to bet on southern events with either bookie or tote, a facility not afforded them at Home Hill last week.

The point that needs to be enforced is those comments on Facebook (whatever they are) would have been happily printed in both the North Queensland Register and on the letsgohorseracing website.

Just as we have done with the letter from the club’s hard working and popular president Ross Tapiolas that appears on this page.

Everyone is entitled to an opinion and your comments are invited. So please, if you disagree - have your say on the proper platform - so everyone can see your view, not just the Facebook fanatics.

 

FACEBOOK BAGGING OF RIDE BY CLUDEN JOCKEY IN HANDS OF STEWARDS

TALKING of Facebook – who is the jockey that copped a bagging from an owner for his ride on a well backed Cluden runner last Tuesday.

The owner is about to be called up (so we hear) for the derogatory comments he posted that were obviously made through his pockets.

Those who watched the race, this scribe included, reckoned the horse was given every conceivable chance.

Now it is in the hands of stewards- and be aware - there is a precedent.

A Townsville owner was fined $1000 last year for doing much the same thing – lambasting a jockey on Facebook.

 

SCENE SET FOR FLOOD RELIEF RACE DAY AT BUNDABERG ON APRIL 6

RACING returned to flood ravaged Bundaberg on Saturday and they turned up in droves – probably the biggest crowd in years of at least 1000 – and it sets the scene for the special Flood Relief day scheduled for April 6 (Golden Slipper Day).

Club president Mark McLean, a keen racing man with horses in both Bundaberg and some with Liam Birchley in Brisbane, expects an even larger crowd and is confident of raising $50,000 for the flood victims.

Mr Mclean reports strong response from the big corporates and local businesses for the meeting that will feature a $20,000 Open Handicap (1200m) that will be relayed nationwide on Sky 1 and have full TAB coverage.

Sydney Horse Transport has offered free floating for horses to attend the meeting from the Gold Coast and Brisbane, but surprisingly has not had a single booking.

“I just hope all the trainers know of our offer but to date there is not one call,’’ said a spokesman Daryl Caldwell.

Brisbane Turf Club has chartered a plane that will carry a bevy of personalities including Channel Seven’s Pat Welsh (a native of the town famous for its rum), Wayne Wilson and Billy J Smith to ensure the day will be a ‘knockout.’

The plane, by the way, will carry 80 race-goers and officials, so no doubt the production line will be in full swing at the famous Rum Distillery this week in preparation.

 

SHADES OF JULIA GILLARD AS IAN JOBLIN SURVIVES AT MTC CHAIRMAN

THERE were unmistakable shades of the Julia Gillard at the Mackay Turf Club’s committee meeting last week when everyone, well nearly everyone in the tight set racing world of  Sugar City, were expecting the much-maligned chairman Ian Joblin to face a no confidence vote.

Rumors have been such for weeks, with disgruntled stakeholders behind the charge to replace Joblin and at the Ooralea race meeting two weeks ago the subject was openly discussed in public areas.

Great confidence was expressed of a new MTC chairman to emerge from the meeting and two candidates were even named as the likely successor.

But in typical Gillard fashion, Joblin survived the plot. In fact there was no move from the floor at all.

So he survived – though my spies assure me it is only temporary.

The AGM in September might have a different tale, when all members get to vote.

There is even a suggestion Joblin might step down, but no one is taking bets.

One interesting and curious sideline to this debacle is that an application by former long-time committeeman Bradley Andrews for one of the four vacancies on the committee was refused with Joblin apparently moving a motion that no new committee member should be appointed before the AGM.

That decision too, is subject to much conjecture.

 

BEACH RACE MEETING AT MACKAY TO BE BIGGER THAN EVER THIS YEAR

TALKING of Mackay the beach race meeting that was such a resounding success last year promises to be even bigger this year.

The promotion of this four-day Beach Horse Racing Festival (August 15-18) is quite amazing, and somewhat of an embarrassment for the regular professional race carnivals in North Queensland.

Sky Channel host Gary Radley and former glamor jockey Malcolm Johnson will return, while football great Alfie Langer and Rhonda Burchmore will headline a bevy of high profile personalities for the festival that includes fashion, golf, concert (starring Rhonda), a Captain’s Table Long Lunch (Friday), a wine and seafood day on the beach (Saturday) and heats and final of the beach races on Sunday.

There will be separate divisions for thoroughbreds (600m), quarter horses (400m) and all other breeds (350m). First and second in each heat will meet in the final for $30,000 prize money).

Already 25 of the 54 horses required for the 12 races have been nominated and the promoter is fielding calls daily from owners and trainers.

Radley and Johnson are bringing a tour from Sydney and expect at least 100 revellers.

 

MACKAY TURF CLUB NOT INTERESTED IN MAKING BEACH DAY PART OF THEIR FESTIVAL

AND what about this - promoter Pope approached the Mackay Turf Club last year and offered to include them into the racing festival.

“I suggested the club apply for a race date for, the Friday or Saturday, when all the visiting celebrities would be in attendance.

“Alternatively I suggested they host a Horse Expo at Ooralea promoting every product in the horse industry. Either way it would have been an absolute money-spinner for them.

“The club didn’t even respond,” Mr Pope said.

Ironically, Mackay is due to race on Tuesday August 12 – just two days before the party starts.

 

INGHAM TO BE COMPENSATED WITH SUNDAY MEETING – AND A TOTE

BAD luck for Ingham which was forced to postpone its big meeting last Saturday.

But all is not lost. The club is looking at Sunday dates in May or June for a BIG family day out.

With a tote in operation, no doubt!

 

COLUMN COURTESY OF TERRY BUTTS AND THE NORTH QUEENSLAND REGISTER, one of Australia's leading rural newspapers.

TERRY BUTTS can be contacted by e-mailing: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

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