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About MalcolmH

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    Maiden - R50

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  1. Given the lousy weather down south for the last three days horses and spectators will all need flippers and snorkels on Sunday!! It has been raining steadily all night with flooding in Invercargill and surrounds so would imagine Riverton to be faring no better.Good luck!!
  2. Just an opinion but I don't think the Jewels should have been shifted. Having them in the real "Heartland" of the industry gives them a passion whereas holding them at the major tracks just makes them another industry meeting. I think the concept is good and perhaps the timing of them could be changed to cater for better crowds , weather etc however I think the real killer now is the predictability of the results same old same old. Looking at this years (unless the Aust invites are any good) the only really open race is the 4 yr old trotters and there are some very good horses in that.
  3. Whilst it is good that the discussion is to take place it will amount to nothing. The first thing that does need to happen is that Mick Guerin needs to disqualify himself from the segment as he is well known to be biased towards a certain stable. The second thing that needs to be done is to get a Vet who is not associated with the industry (or participants) to give facts either for or against. Integrity needs to be shown by all involved in this segment or it will amount to nothing but a charade. Too many big players are involved in ACS and they won't want to see it stopped. IMHO I believe it should be stopped until the facts have been proven as to the welfare of the horse and the legality of it are proven. The sport at the top level is haemoraging which is affecting those at the grass roots who love the industry but don't have the money to compete on the same level. It is also affecting the perception of the sport by the bread and butter people - the punters. Welfare of the horse followed by integrity of the sport have be at the forefront of any discussion.
  4. You are right Fartoomuch, it seems that the ones not getting the drives as much esp amatures and juniors get really hammered whilst the professionals seem to get off with very average fines. Perhaps if after being caught say 3 times they lose the right to use a whip for perhaps a period of time (that is after their suspension is finished!!)
  5. No sympathy for him if repetitive behaviour but I can think of others who are just as bad if not worse and they get a slap on the hand with a wet bus ticket. If you are going to come down hard be the same with EVERYONE no exceptions!!
  6. Dark Horse had an injury which meant she had to have an enforced lay off. She is now back jogging with Nathan Williamson so all going well she will come back stronger and better!!
  7. Totally agree with you JJ Flash! A couple of months ago I took 2 young friends to my local meeting to watch my horse race as a treat for them. We weren't allowed to actually go near the horse as they hadn't done the required course to enter the stabling area (thankfully the trainer brought him over to the barrier so the boys could pat him) The facilities were dirty and run down and the majority of signage was to let you know that you were in an area of great hazards! The food offering was minimal and over priced and there was absolutely nothing to entice you to want to go back although in saying that the racing was good as was the quality of the horses.Young people get bored very quickly and they need stimulation sadly not a lot of this was on offer. Like it or not the younger crowd are the ones we have to look to to keep the sport going wether it be by betting or ownership. It doesn't have to centre around drinking but we do have to make it enticing - family days,competition both on and off the track like the brothers in arm series that Oamaru run or the inter provincial series that Invercargill run. Involve some celebrities or local stars (god know most of them would turn up at the opening of a paper bag if their was publicity involved) but most of all make in interesting.
  8. I hear on Sky news that he won't contest the charges and that the Stewards are seeking a 4 year ban. Really!! Smeardon got life (under appeal) so why is this guy being maybe given such a lenient sentance given the severity of the charges? He is an out and out cheat who has no doubt made a lot of money out of the industry. Will there be a monetary penalty or should there be? Personally I think he should be banned for life and fined a substantial amount.
  9. To be honest (at least in my opinion) I think the best meeting down here is the Northern Southland Nuggets meeting in March - good stakes and good horses and the club really know how to look after both owners and punters. Invercargill cup day is now no better than any other race day down here.
  10. Mick may have a lot of knowledge but he has always been a name dropper.This is only marginally worse than his consistent sucking up to a certain stable which sadly another commentator is also guilty of! Mick and co there are other trainers out there give them the same amount of coverage..
  11. There are natural flaws in this . The executive should be chosen by common vote by all members of the Harness Industry not just one section. This may be time consuming but it would appease most of the participants. If it is not done like this it will just become another "old boys" club whereby those with the money and the backing will get to dictate to everyone else. As for the clubs selecting the executive this is a joke. Yes the clubs should have an input but no bigger than anyone else. For this industry to survive it needs new blood and new direction and sadly you won't get this if you don't listen to the rank and file. For to long it has been all about those at the top with their snouts in the trough taking but giving sweet beggar all back. Time to think of everyone not just a select few!!
  12. Wairio Trotting Club who race at Winton have a meeting totally devoted to mile racing and it is very popular. From my point of view I would prefer to see a mix of distances rather than just a mile otherwise things get predictable and boring after a while.
  13. Gore has never been a good hunting ground for me or any of our syndicate horses and with few workouts down here at the moment there is no real exposed form apart from Forbory Park however I have heard nice things about The Croupier in Race 2 and Chilli Franco in Race 8 is pretty smart on his day.
  14. I wouldn't say it has been dreadfully boring racing at present. The fields have stacked up reasonably well for the time of the year, there have been a few good horses coming through,some good divvies and best of all competitive racing without any domination of any one stable. It might lack the star power of the bigger carnivals but it gives the battlers of the industry their day in the sun (so to speak). As for Lazarus who really cares - he is no longer owned here and I for one would sooner concentrate on what we have racing here after all there are plenty of other good kiwi horses exported to the USA that we very rarely hear about.
  15. Why not, when appointing boards, do they not include a better representation of actual industry participants. For example the board of HRNZ should include an owners rep, a trainers rep,a drivers rep and also a junior drivers rep and an amateur drivers rep. It is ridiculous that decisions are not made in consultation with these type of people after all they ARE the industry. Interesting to note that HRNZ have appointed a new Operations Manager and guess what she has no experience in Harness racing although she says that she has experience in equestrian. That is sure to do Harness racing a lot of good isn't it!! As a smaller owner I feel somewhat betrayed by the powers to be who are doing nothing to address the dissatisfaction within our great sport. At Northern Southland we see two group races with $25,000 stakes and seven runners mainly for the benefit of stables that see Southland as easy pickings in fact I have heard that one stable nominated another one of their runners solely to get the race off the ground! Take $5000 off each race and you could cater for a lower class race to give the battler a chance instead of pandering to the high fliers..