The Annual Sport of Kings Raceday
Event @ Flemington
On July 21st, the annual Sport of Kings raceday was held in the beautiful Committee Room at the Victoria Racing Club (VRC) Flemington. Event Director, Kerri Spillane, generously donated funds raised from this year’s event to the Racing Hearts programs.
Racing Hearts is the brain child of Lisa Coffey and forms part of her racing education services alongside the Victorian Racing Academy. Racing Hearts offers equine assisted social and emotional learning and mental health programs for individuals and groups of all ages. The unique element to these programs is that practitioners work exclusively with retired race horses to benefit their clients in their sessions. The programs also cater for riders who wish to build their confidence. It is currently the only program in Australia that offers assistance specifically to track riders in this area.
Master of Ceremonies for the day was Sky Racing’s funny man Shaun Cosgrove, who kept the laughter coming throughout the day. We were welcomed by VRC Chief Executive Officer, Mr Neil Wilson and interviews with special guests included world renowned veterinarian Dr. Glenn Robertson-smith who spoke about equine welfare in racing and race horse trainer Cindy Alderson who gave a superb recollection of her family and her time in the racing industry and myself. There were also some fabulous raffle and auction items donated by many kind and generous people and organizations including Carman’s, Ambassador Travel, Sheedy Vision and Samsonite. Another very popular item donated was a group dinner for six people, which will not only be hosted by, but also cooked by the MC Shaun Cosgrove! Lisa said ‘I can’t thank Kerri enough for inviting Racing Hearts to be the beneficiary of funds raised from this event. I’d also like to thank everyone who donated items and to those who were able to attend on the day. Racing Hearts is currently working with several organizations to develop free support programs for those who may benefit from Equine Assisted Therapy. One of these groups is Women and Mentoring; WAM Ltd. WAM offer a unique early intervention program that supports women in their early interaction with the justice system as well as women who are at risk of offending. We are working together to develop new ways we can collaborate and provide pathways for these women to develop and use positive life skills. It is a very exciting project.’ The Sport of Kings Event which is now successfully moving into its fourth year was again an outstanding success with tables already booked for next year’s event. Kerri Spillane said “We were very happy to be able to support Lisa and Racing Hearts and wish her every success for the future of these very special programs.’
Lisa Coffey and Dr. Glenn Robertson-smith
Vee & Trevor Rowe
MC Shaun Cosgrove with Lisa Coffey