As today is 11 December we only have 14 more sleeps before Christmas prior to the big fat man in a red suit turning up with one or more presents for those that have been good throughout the year. But I spoke to S for Santa Claus the other day and asked him does he stop at every house and he replied, “Definitely not. If any humanoid publicly – or privately – slammed the Justracing, or associated websites I go straight past the inconsiderate toffs. And those who even mutter an expletive being negative towards the website or you personally will naturally get left off my stopover list. In fact they can expect me to give my reindeers a touch with the jigger as I accelerate on by their joint.”

So there you have it straight from the horse’s mouth – so to speak. So as time is running out for people to buy a decent sort of Christmas present outside of socks and jocks and all the other boring and/or fattening things like large bottles of chocolate coated almonds and the like, let me tell you about a racing book that I’m half way through reading which I’ve found to be a very interesting read.

The book is called “The Big Book of Australian Racing Stories” and that is a very apt name as it is a big book – being 587 pages long. And it sure has a wonderful array of “Australian Racing Stories”. In fact I feel honoured that the author Jim Haynes contacted me to get permission to reproduce a story I’d written over a decade ago on Pam O’Neil, so that story is in the book.

For his part, the author Jim Haynes is well-known and highly respected and previously he’s written such books as Best Australian Racing StoriesAustralia’s Best Unknown StoriesThe Best Australian YarnsThe Best Australian Bush StoriesThe Best Australian Sea StoriesThe Best Australian Trucking StoriesThe Best Gallipoli Yarns and Forgotten Stories as well as The Great Australian Book of Limericks.

Jim’s latest book has some wonderfully gripping stories in it. There’s a really interesting story on The Barb, an even better one on Peter Pan. Then there’s the one on the big Bernborough plonk that stayed in the bag. My favourite story to date has been getting an in-depth overview on the Brulad ring-in which made for an amazing story. And apart from the stories there are many interesting photos.

Jim Haynes book “The Big Book of Australian Racing Stories” is published by Allen and Unwin, which incidentally have been named “Publisher of the Year” no fewer than 12 times. The recommended retail price of the book is $32.99 and it’s available in all good book stores and on line. Allen and Unwin’s website is www.allenandunwin.com

And I see there’s more negativity in The Courier Mail today about how bad things are going to be at the Magic Million January yearling sale. Nothing could be further from the truth as far as I’m concerned and that sort of article is just an excuse in case there’s a downturn in that Magic Millions sale average and so on and so forth. If World War 3 broke out next week I certainly wouldn’t get in the trenches with Magic Millions, but as I call it like it is, right here next week I’ll pen an exclusive story as to why the 2016 Magic Millions yearling sale next month would be a perfect sale to buy a yearling at to race in Queensland. As usual the vast majority of thinkers will say “oh yeah I see what he’s saying, it’s the wonder the website has any detractors at all, the detractors must be thick as a brick”.

There are industry meetings happening this weekend that need to be brought to public attention here. Tony Zammit from the Queensland Greyhound Affiliate (QGA) has been in touch with me to advise that there’s a meeting at 11am upstairs at Albion Park on this coming Sunday 13 December. The meeting will have two main purposes, firstly for the purpose of explaining to licensees where the greyhound industry stands as far as that industry’s contribution to Ubet turnover is concerned and secondly the QGA wants feedback from greyhound racing participants in respect of proposed prizemoney cuts that were advised in the Tracking Towards Sustainability Plan which was released by Racing Queensland Interim CEO, Ian Hall, a bit over a week ago.

Marg Reynolds the Treasurer of BOTRA has also sent through a Media Release regarding an upcoming harness racing industry meeting and it reads:

All stakeholders are invited to attend a harness racing industry meeting to facilitate a letter of reply to the government’s “Tracking Towards Sustainability Plan”.

To be held at Albion Park Raceway on Monday December 14 at 7.00pm

Mr Stephen Sharry has been engaged to facilitate and prepare the document in conjunction with BOTRA and Race Club representatives

Priority discussion items for the document

1. Breeding/QBred

2. Prizemoney Distribution

 3. Infrastructure – Albion Park – Gold Coast

Unite and support the future of Queensland Harness Racing

All input welcome

Racing Queensland Cadet Handicapper Mitch Treleaven has advised the website that the scaled weights for Doomben tomorrow are: Race 2 – 0.50kg, Race 3 + 3kgs and Race 8 – 4kgs. So in my words, not Mitch’s Race 8 which is the Listed Lough Neagh Stakes is full of champions of the turf that you should feel blessed were on the planet and racing at the same time as you were domiciled here as an Earthling before God called you home because there was a vacancy, whilst Race 3 which is a 1MW (one metropolitan win) race is the worst class field of the day in terms of what the Chief Handicapper would expect to see in a 1MW race and he’d be right as usual, as there are certainly some pretenders in Race 3.

In respect of the Doomben track – it is best to wait until tomorrow in case possible showers and/or a storm hit overnight. Ipswich copped a deluge last night but it rained so hard that it pretty much all ran off – without soaking in. Quite a big storm passed over Ipswich around 3pm today heading to Brisbane – but whether Doomben gets much is lap of the Gods stuff.

The apprentice jockey weights for Doomben tomorrow should be:



Lani Fancourt

53 claims 2kgs

Cassie Schmidt

54 claims 2kgs

Luke Dittman

55 claims 2kgs

James Orman

53 claims 1.5kgs

Emma Ljung

51 claims 3kgs

Brooke Stower

51 claims 3kgs

Sairyn Fawke

50 claims 3kgs


Today on www.brisbaneracing.com.au I’ve put up a story on the class of runners in the Villiers Handicap from Randwick.

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