How things have changed

Have you heard these odd rac­ing facts?

Central and North Burnett Times - - ADVERTISING FEATURE -

IF YOU have lived in the North Bur­nett re­gion or Gayn­dah for all your life, you might think you know ev­ery­thing there is to know about horse rac­ing in Gayn­dah.

That may be the case, but here are some un­usual things that have oc­curred over the years.

■ On the sec­ond day of the first Queens­land derby in Gayn­dah, there were two horses of the same name en­tered in the first race.

The two horses were both named Nim­rod – one was a grey geld­ing and the other a roan geld­ing. The grey came sec­ond and the roan came third.

It is in­ter­est­ing to think of this in to­day’s world, it would be a mas­sive prob­lem for race call­ers and if you were only lis­ten­ing to the race over the ra­dio you would as­sume they had a stut­ter.

■ On the third day of rac­ing dur­ing the first Queens­land derby there were two horses rac­ing by the name of Her­mit.

How­ever they were not rac­ing in the same race, only on the same day.

Her­mit, the derby win­ner, was a three-year-old black geld­ing be­long­ing to Mr Parry-Okedan and the other Her­mit was a four-year-old bay geld­ing be­long­ing to Mr Grout.

■ The youngest jockey to win a group-one race rode in the 1869 Queens­land derby on a horse by the name of Zambes.

Zambesi was rid­den by Wil­liam Har­ris, who was only 10 years old.

Mr Har­ris passed away on March 10, 1936, aged 77, con­firm­ing that he was in­deed just 10 years old in 1869 when he rode Zambesi.

He is buried in the Church of Eng­land sec­tion of the old Monto ceme­tery.

Could you imag­ine with the safety reg­u­la­tions that are in place to­day, there is no way a 10-year-old would be able to ride in a group-one race.

■ In 1870, the Queens­land derby was run twice in the same year.

It was run at both Gayn­dah and Bris­bane.

The same horse, Grafton, won both run­nings of the race.

■ At the first rac­ing of the derby, all un­trained horses had to be ap­proved by the stew­ards.

Jock­eys who did not re­turn to scare faced a fine not ex­ceed­ing five pounds and if a jockey was un­der­weight the stew­ards had the dis­cre­tionary power to fine the jockey up to two pounds.

■ Gate prices for the first derby were each per­son one shilling, one horse six­pence, two wheels one shilling six­pence and four wheels three shillings.

PHOTO: CON­TRIB­UTED

YOUNG GUN: Wil­liam Har­ris, born in 1859, won the Maiden Plate at just 10 years old at one of the ear­li­est races at the Gayn­dah race track. He is pic­tured with his fam­ily.

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