December 2010

The race day convention held by Racing NSW in Sydney this year was again a great success, with all NSW country clubs big and small coming together, gathering information from one another and the special guest speakers. The speakers spoke about all avenues of the racing game. The most important message that came out of the conference was delivered by Peter V’landers. Peter and Racing NSW won the court case against the corporate bookmakers, if the corporate bookmakers do not appeal in the designated period of time, Peter who has contributed a lot of time and effort will have had pulled of a great victory for Racing NSW. Peter informed us all that country clubs large and small would benefit from his winning of this landmark court case. I say well done Peter. Maurice Logue (retired jockey) who works for Racing NSW and TAFE NSW is a faculty director. Maurice told us, now to be a stable hand you need to do a TAFE course, to participate in racing education is part of the criteria. Jockeys, farriers, starters, stewards, trainers, bar staff and RSA workers just to name a few trades involved in racing need to be certified, another step forward for Racing NSW.

The Jockey Club has finalised a deal with Council making the way clear for the RFS to be relocated from South St Tuncurry to the Tuncurry racecourse, in the new year work will commence on the building of the fire service’s new Rural Fire Services premises. The Jockey Club is very community minded and are pleased to have the RFS working hand in hand with the Jockey Club.

Talking about new buildings the Swing Doctor’s new golf shed is well under way. The completion of the new golf driving range facilities is going to be the place for all golfers, whether practicing your swing, having a lesson, repairing your clubs or buying gear, from a golf ball to a whole new set. Go and see the Swing Doctor in the middle of the race course for all your golfing needs, seven days a week.

I would like to thank all of the well wishers that sent the Jockey Club a Christmas card. On behalf of the Committee, myself and my wife Marg, we wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, to my hard working volunteers, race goers and supporters, all the best – see you all in good health, and good punting.

See you down the track. Garry.

November 2010

Not only does the rain affect the Tuncurry meetings, the Melbourne Cup this year had its fair share and not unlike the Tuncurry track, Melbourne’s track stood up remarkably well to the large volume of rain. Chris Manning ran the first but by no-means last, “Melbourne Cup Teams Tipping Competition”. Thirty-three teams from business houses and individuals made up the starting teams. With the weather as it was, it made picking winners a lot harder than usual. With two teams forgetting to jump out of the barriers, Manning Shoes and the Bellevue Hotel, they were soon put back on track. The eventual winners, scoring 18 points were No Bull Butchery from the Forster Keys, well done boys, closely followed by the Real Pros better known as the Professional Real Estate with 15 points and the blow-in side, All Inn with 12 points. The Jockey Club made a profit of $1,600. Thanking all that were involved for their support and Chris Manning’s great idea and hard work. This time 33 teams, let’s hope next time we can involve more people from the twin towns.

Our race meeting on October 2nd was a great success, but unfortunately, due to a couple of irresponsible young fellas, we have now, along with Police, Security and the Jockey Club Committee come up with a zero tolerance program. This means that 18 to 25’s will have to confirm ID, be wrist banded and have a wrist stamp. Alcohol sale will also be restricted to this age bracket. Also, anyone that appears to be alcohol or drug affected may be refused entry.

It is a shame that a few can spoil a great day out for others. The Jockey Club’s aim is to make every meeting a fun, relaxing and enjoyable day for all families and punters. The club apologises to any patrons for any problems that occurred and we will not tolerate this happening again.

The Club is in full swing preparing for the March 12th Cup meeting, organising a major town sponsor, cabaret dinner dance, Pavilion tent, VIP tent, super fashions on the fields male and female, jumping castles, food stalls, water melon for the kids face painting and exceptional race fields. This will be the Club’s third Cup meeting and we intend to make it the best, if you have never experienced a social day at the races with your friends and family, don’t miss the TUNCURRY-FORSTER GOLD CUP 12TH MARCH.

Good punting see you down the track. Garry McQuillan.

September 2010

The Tuncurry Mile has been run and won and the Jockey Club beat the weather by a short half head. A few sprinkles never stopped the crowd arriving to enjoy a six-race program held at the Tuncurry track. Betting on the local and the interstate races was at frantic pace at times with the bookmakers working hard to keep up with overcast conditions, the large crowd watched the very competitive six races with the fourth race the Tuncurry Mile being run and won by Novarese, a six year old gelding trained by Tony Newing from Gosford owned by the Slattery family, ridden by Matthew Bennett, the winning connections all received a lead crystal vase and a free service to Rodhog to the value of $2,200. The ever consistent Maajay Prince won again at the Tuncurry track, three starts for three wins, the seven year old gelding trained by Matthew Robinson was ridden by one of the most exciting young and up and coming jockeys on the mid-north coast, Allan Chau. The Jockey club also had a very experienced Sydney jockey James Innes leg up and ride at Tuncurry, with large wraps coming regarding our track.

The AGM was held in the middle of September with a few changes to the committee, Paul Manning and Mick Anderson have stepped down due to work commitments. Brad Rae was elected to Vice President, Kevin Sykes and Glenn Singleton elected to the committee. The AGM was held at the Tuncurry Bowling Club and was chaired by President Paul Norris with many thanks to Paul and the Bowling Club team.

I must take this opportunity to thank the working committee men and ladies and all of those wonderful volunteers who gave of their time working so hard at the last race meeting, you are all so invaluable we could never do it with out you all thank you very much.

See you all down the track good punting. Garry McQuillan.

April 2010

Rain and poor visibility prevented jockeys from completing the Tuncurry-Forster 2010 Anzac Day race meeting. The teaming rain made it impossible for jockeys to have clear vision and the stewards had no other course of action than to abandon the race meeting. The track handled the heavy deluge of rain, as jockey Scott Thurlow said, “the track condition was fine, the horses were not slipping or giving in the going, even though we were down graded to rating of 5 it was the poor visibility that made the final decision”.

The rain did not dampen the enthusiasm of the local supporters, a crowd of not quite 1800 enjoyed the first three races, some dressed up in their best to face the gloomy skies, it was just a shame that the weather closed in and rained out what could have been the biggest race meeting the Tuncurry-Forster Jockey Club could have had so far.

Every cloud has a silver lining, the Chairman and Vice Chairman of Racing NSW Country were in attendance and were pleasantly surprised to see the local support that turn out. How well the tracked handled the wet condition was the major comment, most impressed was Lindsey Murphy the head curator of Rosehill and Canterbury. Lindsey was pleased to see how the track handled so much rain and the meeting only be abandoned due to poor visibility, he said the track was a credit to the hard working committee.

This club could not survive without the great volunteers that work so hard to make our race day a success, from the traffic control, bar staff, ticket sellers, gate attendance, ANZ girls counting the money, those collecting money, time keepers, parade ring attendance, ushers, cleaners, local trainers and my committee, I take my hat off to you all, give yourself a good pat on the back, job well done.

See you all down the track. Garry McQuillan

March 2010

The second Tuncurry-Forster VB Gold Cup has been run and won by So Fine a five year old gelding. The horse has a syndicate of ten very happy owners and was ridden the every colourful jockey Allan Robinson better known as “Robbo”. So Fine is trained by the evergreen Fred Cowell of Gosford, well done and congratulations, the Tuncurry-Forster Jockey Club wishes you all the best and hope you return next year.

The six race program was supported by forty seven trainers and fourteen of the best Jockeys on the coast, Dale Spriggs, Andrew Gibbons, Pat Ferris, Allan Robinson and our local boys Scott Thurlow, Peter Graham and Matthew Paget, not forgetting the lady jockey heading the bill, Alex Stokes. Two of the better known trainers from Taree Bob Milligan and Geoff Pares both winning races, which was great to see. Our local trainers Jeff Quinlan’s horse failed to secure a start, Stewart Phegan’s stable had only one starter and Terry Evans started nine horses on the day winning the last with “Suave Emperor”. Well done to you all.

The greatest asset the Jockey Club has besides the members is the fantastic volunteers. What a hard working band of people all with the sole purpose of spearheading the Jockey Club into the forefront of racing on the Mid North Coast. From the town’s two Rotary Clubs, Bush Fire Brigade on road patrol, car parking, gate and bar attendants to the boys behind the scenes shovelling ice and stacking refreshments, the wonderful ladies selling merchandise and assisting patrons to the seats in the pavilion, and they are aged from eighteen to seventy five. Well done to you all we could never do it with out you. The ladies and gents on the Jockey Club committee, all of the months of hard work paid off, again thanks to you all.

Well, that is not the end of it for this year; we are racing again on Sunday 25th April ANZAC DAY. This year Anzac Day falls on a Sunday and the Monday is a public holiday. The Jockey Club will be letting all war veterans in free for the sacrifice they made for our country, so come along and celebrate Anzac Day at the Tuncurry-Forster Jockey Club.

Good punting, see you down the track, Garry.

February 2010

“Let’s Go Racing” IT’S ON AGAIN, The Tuncurry-Forster Jockey Club’s next meeting is just around the corner Saturday 13th March. The committee and club’s volunteers are in full swing preparing for the next annual 2100m VB Gold Cup. This year we anticipate a large crowd with tickets that already have been pre sold to patrons from Sydney, Bathurst and Gold Coast, the large interest in the Jockey Club’s meeting this year is due to the winning of the most Outstanding Achievement Award for a NON TAB race meeting in the country last year.

The same as last year, we are pre selling race day tickets with the great advantage to this is once you arrive on the free bus service you are able to walk straight in the front gate, this makes everything run smoothly no lining up and waiting to pay (STRAIGHT IN THE GATE). Our volunteer ladies are selling race day tickets in the main streets of Tuncurry and Forster, all the Gazebos have been sold and the Pavilion tent has one hundred and thirty left, as the old saying goes “once you are full you are full” so don’t miss out. Tickets are on sale from Wednesday to Saturday, 10.00am until 3.00pm. This year the shops selling tickets will stay open on race day from 9.00am to 11.00am.

How good are our supporters in the twin town of Tuncurry-Forster? The Jockey Club must give Chris Fardell and his wife Jennie from Chris Fardell Electrical/Kool Heat the thumbs up for installing and supplying an air conditioning unit free of charge for our day office. It’s supporters like this that help the Jockey Club get to another level. The Jockey Club committee thanks Fardell Electrical for their donation and their support.

Good Punting see you down track. Garry.

January 2010

The large chap in the red suit has been and gone, 2010 has arrived and so did the rain. The rain on the Tuncurry track was the most welcomed, I think that the Tuncurry track should now be called Royal Tuncurry, with all the hard work in the past three years, weed killers and fertilizer we are now seeing the results of what a real race track should look like.

The committee and myself are now in full swing heading towards the next race meeting 13th March 2010. Last year we learnt a lot and have made a lot of adjustments, we believe these changes are for the better – more shade, more water, faster refreshment lines and better P.A speakers on the hill and surrounds. There will be less congestion on top of the hill and a walkway from the top to bottom of the hill these are just a few changes that are being implanted for a much more comfortable and enjoyable day. After winning the Most Outstanding Achievement last year from Racing N.S.W Country, this has made the race committee more determined to be more successful than last year.

A major raffle will go on sale in the middle of January with prizes to the value of $3,000. First prize well worth winning, a two night stay at Star City with Harbour Bridge view, breakfast, a show and dinner that night, worth $2,000. The club needs your support with this raffle so dig deep and be generous. Let’s help take the club to the next level. This will be drawn mid afternoon at our next race meeting 13th March 2010. Once again a lot of work, thought and organization is underway, your help would be much appreciated, if you are able to volunteer a few hours please ring Chris 6554 9686 or Marg 6550 2123.

The Committee and myself wish you all a happy New Year. Good punting and I will see you down the track. Garry.