November 3, 2021
Kumbia Race organisers urged patrons to wear pink at the annual “Flemington In The Bush” race meeting on Tuesday.
Many heeded the call to “Pink Up Kumbia”, especially a large group from the Gold Coast who came up to spend time with Kumbia friends, Brian and Kathy McMurdy.
One punter who was definitely in the pink was local MP Deb Frecklington who backed the winner of Race 2 – the race she sponsored alongside her sister Jackie Allery (Raine & Horne Real Estate) and Nutrien Ag Solutions Kingaroy.
The thing is … Mrs Frecklington also backed the winner in her sponsored race last year!
The COVID-19 pandemic introduced some changes at the 2021 Kumbia Races: tickets and cheese platters had to be pre-booked online, the main entrance was on the western side of the track; and there were, of course, the ubiquitous QR code signs everywhere.
But once inside, it looked like the Kumbia Races of old, with guests enjoying drinks in the bar or in marquees erected alongside the track.
But while the punters were relaxing and having fun, the stewards were being kept busy with the five-race card.
Race 1 was delayed initially when the saddle cloths were not available, and then ‘Midnight Waltz’ would not let her jockey mount until it she was led out on to the track, further delaying the jump.
The racing was also full of drama, with Carly Frater – the jockey on Race 2 runner-up ‘Avoca’ – suspended for three weeks for failing to ride the horse out to the finish line.
Six other jockeys also were fined or reprimanded for various infractions, including accepting a mount when overweight, and three trainers were reprimanded for presenting their horses with the wrong gear.
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Race 1 – Rohan Voller Denture Studio, Powersafe Kingaroy & Nutrien Livestock Class B Handicap (1000m)
1. Exceptional Belle (3) – Corinne Miles
2. Stormwater (1) – Gary Geran
3. Miss Cruisey (9) – Bradley Appo
Margins: 3 lengths x short neck
Race 2 – Deb Frecklington, Raine & Horne Kingaroy & Nutrien Ag Solutions QTIS Maiden Plate (1200m)
1. Romance Factor (6) – Lilli Barr
2. Avoca (1) – Carly Frater
3. Darlhisma (8) – Kenji Yoshida
Margins: Long neck x half length
Race 3 – Liberty Fuel Kingaroy Benchmark 60 Handicap (1200m)
1. Coynes Road (4) – Chris Meehan
2. Bonville (7) – Lilli Barr
3. Oakfield Comanche (1) – Hannah Phillips
Margins: Long neck x long neck
Race 4 – Lenihan, Smoothy, Reed & McConville Families Burnett To The Beach BenchMark 50 Handicap (1400m)
1. East Esplanade (3) – Lilli Barr
2. Kakatiya (7) – Chris Meehan
3. Enchanted Reign (9) – Bradley Appo
Margins: 2 1/2 lengths x 1 1/2 lengths
Race 5 – Huston Motors Kumbia Cup Open Handicap (1400m)
1. Destiny’s Own (1) – Billie-Rose Andrew
2. Palate (5) – Kenji Yoshida
3. Stazzana (7) – Gary Geran
Margins: 3 1/4 lengths x head