30 April 2013
Spat, fracas, brouhaha - whatever colourful epithet you choose - Saturday's spectacular public bust-up of John Singleton and Gai Waterhouse, horse racing's "odd couple", has been hugged by the media like a long-lost friend......read the rest of our article over at the ABC's The Drum.
29 April 2013
"THE sad death of veteran trainer Vic Thompson Snr revived memories of one of the most famous episodes in Australian turf history. When Fair Patton won the 1964 Brisbane Cup, owner Claude Hawke strode into the winner's circle and declared what a wonderful trainer Thompson was. But only a matter of minutes later, he walked up to an elated Thompson and declared he was taking the horse from Vic and would, henceforth, train it himself. The reason for the shock move was not publicly revealed for another nine months, until it finally exploded into a major court case. In a nutshell, Hawke had discovered that Thompson tipped Fair Patton to a man later described in court as "a punter named Tyler." Hawke not only immediately took the horse from Thompson, but then refused to pay him a 10 per cent trainer's commission of 1,000 pounds for the nag's victory - and Thompson duly took Hawke to court over it.
26 April 2013
|Newsmaker: Al Zarooni|
"Under current Australian racing policies regarding non-raceday steroid testing, Al Zarooni would not have been charged."Racing NSW Chief Steward Ray Murrihy responded to the news by calling for a debate on the use of Anobolic Steriods in Australian Racing. WITH SOURCE: Breedingracing.com
23 April 2013
22 April 2013
And now Victorian Premier Denis Napthine has refused to repeat his demand for answers over RVL's conduct of the Oliver affair during the 2012 spring carnival.
The Premier, who remains fully embedded as Minister for Racing, said through a spokesperson that he:
"has confidence in Sal Perna as the Independent Victorian Racing Integrity Commissioner and there is no doubt Mr Perna is the appropriate authority to investigate the handling of the Damien Oliver investigation."
If you remember, on November 20, 2012, after months of controversy, Napthine finally emerged from his bunker to declare he "was very concerned about allegations of mishandling and delays into resolving the Oliver inquiry". So concerned he put out a release headed:
"Minister seeks independent investigation of Damien Oliver Inquiry"
in which he asked Perna to investigate:
06 March 2013
"I've been working with RVL to get all the documentation together," Racing Integrity Commissioner Sal Perna told Turf Confidential last Wednesday, exactly 100 days since Racing Minister Denis Napthine called on him to investigate Racing Victoria's dismal handling of the matter.
"I've examined the bulk of the information but there's still a couple of items I still need to get from RVL.
"I should be able to start interviews next week."Blow us down with a feather. This farce, which dragged the 2012 Melbourne Cup Carnival through the mud and left an ugly stain where Victorian racing's good name used to be, is being interrogated with all the rigour of rigor mortis.
Process is clearly strangling this Commissioner's sense of urgency.
21 December 2012
''Yes, (Mark) Hunter had helped us during the course of the inquiry. And he had earned concessions for doing so. After all, it was his information that brought about the Oliver case. However, it is still an ongoing situation,'' he said.
Didn't The Age also have something to do with it? Anyone who wants open and transparent conduct of integrity assurance in Australian racing, must find those words "earned concessions" very troubling. By what discretion do stewards have the power to make such seemingly ad hoc calculations? Where is the ready reckoner which charts what level of 'cooperation' with stewards grants an "indemnity" to the Australian Rules of Racing?
22 November 2012
"Illegal betting scandal overshadows Melbourne Cup": That's the headline people read in Townsville on Cup Day this year. And in Cooper Pedy, Albany, Double Bay and South Yarra. That's what they read in Louisville, Newmarket, Chantilly and Happy Valley.
Read our full story over at the ABC's The Drum.
19 November 2012
Tomorrow's the big day. Like a reveal on Extreme Makeover, tomorrow the racing public finds out just how it's been duly processed.
Meanwhile the Racing Review chaps were a force for good yesterday. Bruce Clark kicked off with a topic close to our heart: "Why is it an Independent Panel?"
HINES: "It's not really Independent, I think you've got to get this in context."Ok. So the panel that was so independent they wouldn't talk about, is now not independent at all.
"Its a panel established by the integrity subcommittee of Racing Victoria to look specifically at the Oliver matter, so it was identified as an inquiry panel, it has Rob Montgomery Deputy Chairman of Stewards, James Hitchcock, a steward and Tony Burns, a barrister that we appointed to that panel."Yes, very informative, but why was it necessary? And who appointed it and why is Terry Bailey not on it? Hines said Bailey couldn't be involved in the Oliver matter, because he was tied up with the VCAT Nikolic matter. "It's a workload issue." But that hearing was on the two days after the Melbourne Cup, not in the two weeks before the Cup when swift action was necessary to protect the betting public.