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Australian Trainers’ Association Report – June newsletter

The recent abandonment of the race meeting at Quilpie just prior to race 1 highlights the need for far better process by both Racing Qld & QRIC to ensure our tracks are prepared safe and ready for racing. The race clubs are often made up mostly of volunteers and track preparation can sometimes be “doing their best with the equipment they have” and obviously very easily interfered with by weather events. The safety and welfare of our jockeys and horses is paramount, and thankfully the Stewards on the day are experienced and responsible enough to make the tough calls, often much to the dislike of patrons and the clubs.

The compensation paid to each horse ($400) via the trainer helps to offset the travel and associated costs, comes out of the same fund as does our prizemoney. Unless it’s a weather event on the actual race-day, events like this should never happen and the cost to our industry and the time and effort invested by all the participants not wasted.

The ATA recently had a meeting with RQ & QRIC on this issue and was very pleased with the outcome. We also commenced discussions on the (very overdue) topic of race-day abandonment due to weather events (rain/heat etc) to look to having a consistent decision making process state-wide when required.

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The ATA (Qld) regularly sends out up to date information to its members via text and email. Recently the text (SMS/MMS) system has been increasingly unreliable with some members receiving the messages late and sometime not at all. The WhatsApp platform has been adopted and is already proving a huge improvement, and looks like becoming our best form of communication. Very soon we will have individual groups for each location, so messages can be location specific when required. If you haven’t already got WhatsApp on your phone, download it now and let us know, so we can add you to the distribution groups.

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One of the major benefits of being a member of the ATA in Qld is the regular supply of information sent by email, text and WhatsApp. This information often precedes official confirmation which gives trainers more time to better plan and organise etc. Reminders of important deadlines also can be very  helpful, along with detail explanations of upcoming rule changes. Being an ATA member also gives you a chance to have your say, with often members deciding on important issues which hold a lot of weight in negotiations with both RQ & QRIC.

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The 2021/22 TAB Wayne Wilson Medal for the month of May has been won by Mark Currie and his stable star Soxagon, winning the Group 3 BRC Sprint at Eagle Farm. The win came on the back of the victory in the Listed ATC Cup at the Gold Coast earlier in the month. Soxagon has now won just short of $1m from his 10 wins from 29 starts.

The 6yo gelding by Rocker had a major form turn-around 2 years ago when Mark experimented with a cross-over nose band just before he landed the win in the Lough Neagh stakes in 2020, and then a dominant win in The Buffering in 2021. Unfortunately a small bone chip was found after this which required an operation that fortunately was very sucessful. Mark has been training for over 30 years, prior to that shearing sheep for 15 and Soxagon continues to be well and truly his career highlight.

Special note for our October winner Desleigh Forster who upgrades her achievement to now be for winning the Group 1 Kingsford Smith Cup with Apache Chase. The Better Than Ready gelding is still only a 4yo has now won 9 races and over $2m for owners Mike and Terry-Ann Sherrin. Both Soxagon and Apache Chase now tackle the Stradbroke and who knows what high mountains either of them might get the opportunity to climb next!

Mark and Desleigh are both in the running for the for the 2022 TAB Wayne Wilson Medal.

The Wayne Wilson Medal 2021/22

August:  Janel Ryan for winning the Cairns Cup with Tutelage.

September: Jack Duncan for Wapiti winning the Toowoomba Cup.

October: Desleigh Forster winning the Group 1 Kingsford-Smith Cup at Eagle Farm.

November: Paul Nolan (Jnr) winning metro races at Toowoomba and Doomben with Don’t Stop.

December: Nick Walsh winning a metro race with Aleysa’s Dream at Eagle Farm.

January: Kacy Fogden winning the G3 Canonbury Stakes at Rosehill with Best of Bordeaux.

February: Lyle Wright winning 5 races in a row with Emilee’s Empire.

March: Steven O’Dea & Matt Hoysted winning the 2yo QTIS Jewel with She’sgottheboom

April: Todd Austin winning the Birdsville Cup with Echo Point and 4 other races at the Carnival.

May: Mark Currie winning the ATC Cup and the Group 3 BRC Sprint with Soxagon.

 

 

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