BACK ON TRACK

The Gazette (Derwent Valley) - - FRONT PAGE - SHAUN McMANUS

MUCH-NEEDED main­te­nance work on the New Nor­folk pac­ing track has made life eas­ier for lo­cal train­ers and led to a push for the town to re-es­tab­lish an an­nual track meet­ing.

Tas­ma­nian Pac­ing Club chief ex­ec­u­tive Steve Dev­ereaux said the track had started to be­come run down since the New Nor­folk Pac­ing Club folded about 18 months ago.

“Train­ers were still us­ing the track, but it hasn’t been main­tained, so the Tas­ma­nian Pac­ing Club took on the job to get the track up to stan­dard again so that peo­ple could use it,” Mr Dev­ereaux said.

Tas­rac­ing took its equip­ment from El­wick to New Nor­folk late last month and resur­faced the track.

“The idea is we [the TPC] will keep it go­ing for as long as we need to un­til we get a new club up there,” Mr Dev­ereaux said.

“We’re just go­ing through the process now of get­ting one of the lo­cals to work on the track one or two days a week just to keep it in good con­di­tion.”

He said he hoped it was pos­si­ble to re-es­tab­lish an an­nual track meet­ing on Aus­tralia Day.

“New Nor­folk has had a pretty long his­tory in har­ness rac­ing and a lot of good horses have come from up there over the years, so it’s fan­tas­tic to see it back up and go­ing,” Mr Dev­ereaux said.

“Hope­fully ev­ery­thing goes well with the race meet­ing and we make it a pretty big event up there.”

Ma­gra trainer Juanita McKen­zie said all the lo­cal train­ers were happy to see the main­te­nance work be­ing car­ried out.

“If it didn’t go ahead, it meant that I prob­a­bly would have had to have given away the train­ing,” Ms McKen­zie said.

“I can’t re­ally travel to other tracks out of New Nor­folk, [be­cause] it makes it re­ally hard hav­ing a fam­ily.”

She said she sup­ported the push to re-es­tab­lish an Aus­tralia Day race meet­ing.

“It is a lo­cal tra­di­tion and we nor­mally get a re­ally big crowd here,’’ Ms McKen­zie said.

“The whole com­mu­nity sup­ports “It’s just a great fam­ily day and a great at­mos­phere.”

Picture: MATHEW FAR­RELL

AC­TION STA­TIONS: Der­went Val­ley train­ers Kerry Hill, left, and Juanita McKen­zie take their horses around the resur­faced New Nor­folk pac­ing track.

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