Marburg place for top day out

YOU'VE just finished a tasty breakfast and you turn to the QT for an update on the weekend prospects.

Guess what's on today? If you fancy a short drive in the country, an inviting lunch and some exciting racing, the Marburg Showgrounds is the place to go.

A trials program precedes the six-race trots card at 11am.

The first race is at 12.30pm.

It's all there with a Christmas flavour.

Bookies will field on the local trots and all major gallops meetings, with Sky Channel vision and prices to keep punters in the picture.

Win or lose, you'll have a great day out at Marburg.


Sad loss

THIS week we tell of the passing of Danny Forrest, of Toogooloowah, who was cut down by lung cancer at the age of 58.

Danny was originally from the Granville/Merrylands area of Sydney and part of the Forrest family that were active with trotters as well as pacers for about 40 years from the early 60s.

He had been employed in George Michael's "Melton Stud'' operation for the past four years.

Feeding, pre-training and latterly education were in Danny's job description and Michael was pleased to give him a horse or two train for himself.

Danny had a number of horses in the Sydney area including Western Ray, City Of Lights, Brocholiver Girl, Amerigo Snip and Ali Adios.

His last recorded winner was Hanover Pop at Wyong in January 2001.

Although it was a long time between drinks for the colours of Dark Blue, Red Maltese Cross and Light Blue Sleeves Danny never lost hope in the game.

James Daniel Forrest loved his horses and was a likeable and friendly man.

With little hope of getting to the top, he did his bit to hold the tree up.

If only for that, he is badly and sadly missed.


Era over

THE end of an era would be the best way to describe the retirement of Jim Walsh from the manufacture of race and training sulkies.

R.J. Walsh and Sons commenced trading in 1961 as R.J. and M.P Walsh, producing round back and Egan style sulkies in spotted gum and leather trim with tubular steel under carriage.

The finish varied from clear varnish to owner's preference in colour and metal work in enamel or chrome finish. Scroll or line work was by transfer.

Current owner Jim Walsh joined the business in the 70s, having completed a degree in mechanical engineering.

Young Jim bought serious innovation to a stagnant area of trotting where progress when it did occur was generally haphazard and occasional.

Walsh oversaw the exit of wood from the Walsh product in 1980, replacing the old faithful with 316 stainless tubing.

Manufacturing methods turned to modular construction for ease of assembly and repair and emphasis was placed on creating uplift at the point of attachment to the horse.

This was done by moving the axles forward of the vertical line of the seat. Thus, an 88kg driver produced an upward force of 12 kilos at the tie downs.

This enabled the horse to direct his entire energy forward rather than a combination of pull and carry.

Other innovations were based on the offset principle where the under carriage was set outrigger fashion on the offside.

This enabled the horse to be hitched closer to the driver in the narrow sulkies, which were mandatory in this country.

All up, the Walsh factory produced 15,450 sulkies from 1961 until last Wednesday.

The stainless run accounted for approximately 9000 of these, comprising the Regal or standard model and the Ireland Special which was the popular choice in the offset camp.

R.J.Walsh and Sons took race sulky manufacture from the bespoke trade to volume production with an attractive, practical and above all successful product.

Jim Walsh was able to apply the principles of engineering theory to any new idea, rather than the trial and error methods of tradition.


Winners' list

SIX winners was the total from the greater Ipswich footprint this period.

Kelli Dawson gets the honours for driving two winners last week. It can only get better.

  • Gold Coast, December 7: Christensen (Kelli Dawson for Lynn Beaton); Political Lass (Gary Whitaker for Ricky Gordon).
  • Albion Park, December 8: Davey J (Pete for John Davis); Any Left (Chantal Turpin for Shaun Gillespie).
  • Albion Park, December 11: Praze An Beeble (Adam Sanderson for P.G. Young).
  • Redcliffe, December 12: White Eye Markei (Darrel Graham).


Handy tips

SELECTIONS for Albion Park tonight:

  • R1 - Box trifecta 1-6-8: Zoro (M. Neilson), Notjustanotherama (R. Law), Exceptional Cullen (G. Dixon).
  • R2: Quinella 1-8 - Triumphant Reign (n/a) and Davey J (P. McMullen).
  • R3: Box trifecta 2-7-10 - Bullet Rainbow (S. Graham)-Ezi Days (P. McMullen), Wrotham Park (G. Bond).
  • R4: E/w 11 - Demolition Babe (S. Graham).
  • R5: Quinella 3-8 - Lanercost (D. Graham) and Devil Dodger (G. Dixon).
  • R6: E/w 1 - Izzy Ours (P. McMullen).
  • R7: Quinella 1-2 - Caesar Supreme (D. Graham) and Heathbern Diamond (A. Sanderson).
  • R8: E/w 1 - Ideal Situation (B. Cowen).
  • R9: Quinella 3-6 - Montrose Kid (G. Dwyer) and Summerline (R. Thurlow).

Marburg tips for today's meeting

  • Race 1: No 2: Nothings Final - On debut. Well bred filly in good stable.
  • No 4: Montana Tess. Gate speed A/P Tues. Behind leader at bell. This is shorter.
  • No 5: Chevals Miron. Good recent Marburg trial form. Has gate speed.
  • Race 2: No 2: Saunders Jewel. Has gate speed. Discard last run.
  • No 3: Josscotay. Fitter for four runs from spell. Place chance.
  • No 1: Melton Miss Logie. Has ace draw and been racing stronger company.
  • Race 3: No 10: Commander In Chief. Long way back but perhaps better than most of these.
  • No 9: Mister Skye Rocket. Solid stand form from top stable. Can run big race from 30 metres.
  • No 6: Harmony Prince. Top run to win from 20 metres last meeting here. Slightly stronger field but up 10 metres. Chance.
  • Race 4: No 1: Pureora Mac. Has gate speed and solid form.
  • No 3: Ultimate Chevy. Sound form including Marburg. Keep safe.
  • No 6: Marchmont Drive. Twelve metre second here in fast time last run. Not the roughest.
  • Race 5: No 2: Eye To Eye. Wins at last two, Gold Coast and Albion Park.
  • No 1: Just A Fling. Strong formline and reliable. Chance.
  • No 8: Sea Spray Notch. Class runner of the field. Should give it a shake.
  • Race 6: No 4: Ideal Guy. No luck at recent runs.
  • No 7: Cheykimen. Unlucky 4th at Marburg last meeting. Go on that.
  • No 8: Jaylets Fury. Better draw than when winner at Gold Coast on December 10 from barrier 6.

Topics:  denis smith marburg opinion trotting

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