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Derby Tops Off Cup Day

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Brett and Priscilla Howard and Bjoern Paton, all from Hervey Bay, brightened up the field with their eye-popping outfits at Saturday’s Nanango Cup race meeting

August 6, 2019

Saturday’s Nanango Cup race meeting drew the biggest crowd seen at Lee Park so far this year … and also one of the most unusual.

While the meeting is always a popular outing on Nanango Race Club’s annual calendar, this year the course also welcomed a visit from 200 people taking part in the annual Fraser Coast Dunga Derby.

The Derby raises funds for Rally For A Cause, a charity that supports families and individuals affected by life-limiting medical conditions or those who have had their lives disrupted by circumstances beyond their control.

Each year, teams of rally drivers set off on a mystery four-day course somewhere around Queensland, and this year it was the South Burnett’s turn to play host.

The Derby teams spent their first night in the region at the Lake Boondooma Tourist Park.

Early on Saturday they began streaming into the South Burnett Equestrian Club’s grounds next to the Nanango racecourse so they could set up camp and change into their raceday finery.

Derby drivers, navigators and their passengers started appearing trackside soon afterwards.

They were easy to distinguish from the local crowd by their total disregard for the meeting’s “Classic Black and White” fashion theme, opting instead for a mind-boggling array of outfits that covered everything from Scots kilts to inflatable horses.

Well-known South Burnett saxophonist Tom McKenzie serenaded them with a string of classic jazz and blues favourites.

And as rally driving is known to be thirsty work, the Race Club’s bar and canteen was stocked with extra provisions to accommodate the visitors.

As August 1 is the birthday for all horses and marks the start of a new racing year, the day began with the Race Club’s traditional Blessing Of The Jockeys ceremony, which was performed by Rod Morgan.

Jockeys then saddled up for the first of the day’s six races.

Racegoers and Dunga Derby participants continued to arrive, culminating in a Fashions parade so big entrants had to form a conga line in front of the covered seating area for judging.

The Nanango Cup, which was first run 160 years ago, was the main race of the day but surprisingly drew the smallest field, with just four horses lining up at the barriers.

But the small number of entrants didn’t prevent keen punters having a flutter, or packing the track to see Executed dash across the line a length ahead of its nearest rival.

Nanango Race Club president Andrew Green said he was very happy with the day’s turnout, and pleased the Dunga Derby had chosen the meeting as part of this year’s itinerary.

  • Nanango Race Club’s next meeting will be its Spring Races on Saturday, September 14. This will be followed by Wondai’s Caulfield Cup meeting in October, and Kumbia’s Melbourne Cup Day races in November.

This year’s traditional Blessing Of The Jockeys ceremony was performed by Rod Morgan, who wished everyone involved in racing – and particularly jockeys – a safe and happy year ahead

Sonja and Priscilla Staunton and Sonia Pronk, all from Hervey Bay, brought their inflatable horses to the track

Dunga Derby participants Trina Ehrlich, Cass Ironside, Elisa Ferrier, John and Tracey Maynard and Jody Peacock added a bright splash of colour to the meeting

Tracy Potts, Damon Bensein and Donna Picton, from Hervey Bay, shared a thing for bling

Hervey Bay’s Jane Giuliano and Linda Cadel were policing the Dunga Derby crowd at Lee Park on Saturday using ‘horses’ they had bought on eBay

Tiaro Dunga Derby participants Pippy, Taz, Ray and Trav were part of The Scots team

Russell and Annie McGill and Mark Bice were part of the Ironpot Beefeaters team

Joy Beacham, Gaye Cullen, Kerry Spencer and Karlie Holloway, from the Katastrophy Wives, created a buzz in the betting ring

Naughty boys Jeff Hird, Adam Vieglais, Mark Cassidy and Peter Grumley

Karlie Zemek, Barbara Thompson and Shae Cull took top honours in the Fashions On The Field competition for their classic black and white outfits

* * *

This year’s Nanango Cup was a triumph for the handicapper … top-weight Executed crossed the line a length ahead of Fasta Than Light and two lengths ahead of Gud Onya¬†

Executed’s owner Stan Johnston, from Craiglea Stud, accepted this year’s Nanango Cup from major sponsors Peter Jackson (Fitzroy Hotel Nanango), Neil Tucker (Rebel Liquor) and Ty Rieck (XXXX)

Race Results

Race 1 – Huston Nissan QTIS Maiden Plate (1000m)
1. Super Leon (1) – Gary Geran
2. Brigalow Queen (11) – Hannah English
3. Craiglea Oscar (9) – Robert Faehr
Time: 0:58.35
Margins: Long head x 3 1/4 lengths

Race 2 – J.A. Lee Memorial/National Jockeys Trust BenchMark 60 Handicap (1000m)
1. New Alliance (1) – Paul Hamblin
2. Brad The Lad (4) – Melissa Cox
3. Pipemajor (10) – Anna Bakos
Time: 0:58.06
Margins: 1 1/2 lengths x length

Race 3 – Deb Frecklington MP Class B Handicap (1200m)
1. Siouxsie (9) – Hannah English
2. Mont Mont (3) – Beau-Dene Appo
3. Swagman (10) – Rebecca Goldsbury
Time: 1:10.18
Margins: 1 1/4 lengths x 4 1/4 lengths

Race 4 – McDonald’s Kingaroy BenchMark 65 Handicap (1200m)
1. Brat Attack (2) – Robert Faehr
2. Haylee Prince (5) – Hannah English
3. Man Overboard (4) – Hannah Phillips
Time: 1:11.18
Margins: Length x length

Race 5 – XXXX Fitzroy Hotel Cheers Liquor House Nanango Cup Open Handicap (1600m)
1. Executed (1) – Jason Missen
2. Fasta Than Light (2) – Hannah English
3. Gud Onya (3) – Anna Bakos
Time: 1:34:46
Margins: Length x length

Race 6 – Heritage Bank Nanango BenchMark 55 Handicap (1600m)
1. Half Moon Blue (10) – Cecily Eaton
2. Marlahn (3) – Damion McIntosh
3. Shadow Empire (5) – Robert Faehr
Time: 1:35:22
Margins: 2 1/4 lengths x length

  • View videos of all six races on the Nanango Race Club’s YouTube Channel

Stan Johnston and Dianne Reis congratulated jockey Jason Missen after the Cup presentation

Siouxsie was an easy winner in Race 3, the Deb Frecklington MP Class B Handicap, streaking past the winning post more than a length ahead of Mont Mont


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