Mother’s Day races to feature jumps events

THREE jumps events will head up a nine-race program at Ballarat races on Sunday.
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The QLS Logistics Steeplechase, 3200m, has attracted 10 acceptors to open the Mother’s Day program.

Seasoned jumpers from the Eric Musgrove stable, Honour The Force and End Of Time, are at the top of the weights.

Honour The Force has done most of his jumping in South Australia, with head of his two hurdle wins at Morphetville

End Of Time has also done plenty of jumping across the border, with his three wins over the obstacles including a hurdle at Gawler and most significantly a steeple at Casterton.

The QLS Logistics Maiden Hurdle, 3200m, has a capacity field of 12 plus four emergencies and the QLS Logistics 0-120 Hurdle, 3200m, has a line-up of six.

The latter has three of the state’s most promising hurdlers in Beer Garden and Jungle Fighter from the Ballarat stable of Dan O’Sullivan and Stoneblack for Robert Smerdon.

Ciaron Maher also has last-start Warrnambool May Carnival winner Viking Tiger.

The expanded program starts at the earlier time of 11.55am.

MEANWHILE, jockey Ben Melham is chasing a third group 1 win of the Adelaide Autumn Carnival.

He began the carnival with just one group 1 victory to his name – Black Caviar in the Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Flemington.

Melham, who grew up in Ballarat and began his riding career with Darren Weir, combined with the Weir-trained Platelet to claim the $400,000 Robert Sangster Stakes at Morphettville.

If that was not enough, he then took the Matt Laurie-trained Escado to victory in the group 1 $500,000 SA Derby, 2500m.

Now Melham can complete a group 1 treble on Platelet in the group 1 $500,000 Goodwood Handicap, 1200m, at Morphettville tomorrow.

While the mare has been in super form, it is big ask with 56.5kg.

Platelet is rated a $12 chance on the fourth line of betting with tab南京夜网.au.

Topweight Moment Of Change is $2.05 favourite ahead of Yosei ($7) and Facile Tigre ($8.50).

[email protected]南京夜网.au

THREE jumps events will head up a nine-race program at Ballarat races on Sunday.

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Netballers turning pink

TEAMS of the Mount Gambier Netball Association will turn pink tomorrow participating in the annual Breast Cancer Network Australia Pink Sports Day.
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This will be the association’s second Pink Sports Day after raising around $4000 for the BCNA at last year’s event.

The MGNA seeks to raise awareness of breast cancer among local women and allow junior players to understand the severity of the illness.

With a total of 83 netball teams within the association there are a number of people and families that have been affected by breast cancer.

MGNA’s publicity officer Donna Fleming said it is a good opportunity to use the numbers within the association to raise money and promote awareness of the illness.

“We have such a huge association, with 83 teams, plus family, friends, volunteers and coaching staff, it all adds up on the day,” she said.

“It is such a great opportunity to get the entire association involved for this event and raise some money to help women everywhere.”

Newcomers to the association, Amazons, have a bright pink uniform and look to wear it with pride tomorrow as Pink Day kicks off.

Amazons president – and coach – Jodie Cook said the junior players at the club are very excited about the event.

“We are a very junior focused club, we look to educate our players not only about netball but get them to understand what the Pink Day is about and our seniors are right behind them,” she said.

“It’s pink day everyday for Amazons, but tomorrow is special.

“The senior players have a further understanding about what the money will go towards and we try to get our kids to grow up aware, so hopefully when they get older there will be a cure,” Fleming added.

“So I guess we’re really doing it for our children and the future of the association.”

The Pink Day will host a wide range of activities and Mothers Day celebrations.

“There will be decorations, a couple of stalls, food and plenty of pink,” Fleming said.

“Last year the players loved it and we saw pink ribbons, face paint and flashes of pink all over the court.”

The BCNA annual Pink Day will commence tomorrow at Olympic Park’s with the first series of MGNA matches starting at 9am.

“It is an exciting opportunity for the community to get involved because it’s not just about netball,” Fleming said.

“We expect it will be another successful Pink Day, it should be a really good family event.”

PINK DAY READY: Amazons 11 and under netballers Charlotte Hann, Makaylah Sanders, Kyrah Buttonsander and Hayley Barnes are excited to show off their uniforms at tomorrow’s BCNA Pink Sports Day. Picture: KYRA SYKES

PRETTY IN PINK: Amazons’ Georgia Thompson, Bailee Dawe and Monique Hill have been training hard for their 11 and under Pink Day netball match

Prized partnership offers an automotive dream come true

THE unlimited use of a brand new Mercedes-Benz for a three-day weekend or a high speed ride in a racing car around the lake may sound like a dream to many, but for a few lucky winners it will become a reality at next weekend’s Scott Group of Companies Mount Gambier Gold Cup.
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Koonara Wines has partnered with Garlin and Gazzard to offer the auction prize of a thrilling ride in Peter Gazzard’s racing car and the use of a luxury vehicle.

The prizes – and other giveaways, including a relaxing night at The Barn with dinner, a winter getaway in a secluded Coonawarra boutique cottage, jewellery and race packages – will be given away to people who book a spot in the Koonara Wines marquee at the cup.

The prizes will be given away during a marquee auction, with all proceeds going to the Stand Like Stone foundation.

Meanwhile, $5 will be donated to the charity from each ticket sold to the marquee.

The fundraiser ties in with the upcoming glamorous Swinging with the Stars event, which will be held at The Barn on June 22.

The dance competition is Stand Like Stone’s biggest annual fundraising event and brings well-known people in the community together to swing to the music with experienced dancers for the night.

This year, Grant High School teacher Laura Mancuso, Bellum Hotel owner Simon Livingstone and speech pathologist Rosanna Barson will be among the “stars” competing to raise the most money for Stand Like Stone.

Peter Gazzard said he was keen to offer prizes at the auction to help raise money for the charity.

“We have been big supporters of Stand Like Stone since my wife Carolyn was one of the stars at the Swinging with the Stars ball event, so it is great to be able to help support Koonara with raising money for this good cause,” he said.

The Koonara wines marquee will also present a snapshot of dancing showcased by Swinging with the Stars dancers who are being trained by Kate English of Envy Dance Studio for the event.

In the next week, the Koonara emblazoned Mercedes will be parked around town and people have been encouraged to take photographs of themselves next to the vehicle to stand a chance to win wine at the cup day.

For bookings for the Koonara Wines marquee contact 8737 3222.

FOR CHARITY: Peter Gazzard (right) from Carlin and Gazzard has partnered with Koonara Wines to give away unforgettable prizes at next weekend’s Scott Group of Companies Mount Gambier Gold Cup at Glenburnie and raise money for the Stand Like Stone Foundation. The charity organisation will also benefit from the Swinging with the Stars event in June. Callum Unger and Tayla Kovaleff are pictured

Positive rub for new hub

SUNRAYSIA’S new-look football administration hub is on track to be up and running by later this year.
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AFL Country Victoria’s proposals for regional football leagues to acquire the new administration hub has been agreed on by local football groups and should come to fruition by October 1.

Following an investigation into what was then known as the VCFL in 2011, AFL-appointed­ investigator Peter Jackson believed that dividing the state into 13 administrative hubs, rather than all leagues keeping their own administration, was the way forward.­

The new administration hub will:

COMBINE the administrative duties of the Sunraysia Football and Netball League (SFNL), Sunraysia Junior Football and Netball League (SJFNL), Millewa Football League (MFL) and Sunraysia Football Umpires Association (SFUA);

APPOINT a general manager and a possible trainee administration officer to open the office between 9am-5pm weekdays;

INCLUDE the Sunraysia AFL development officer;

BE overseen by a regional board likely to have five members;

CREATE a cost-efficient administration environment; and

MAKE it easier to apply for grants to help develop football in the Sunraysia region.

SFNL president Trevor Heaft said all parties had agreed to proceed with the new hub.

“We’ve spoken to the AFL and they are happy for us to move forward,” he said. “At this stage, it looks like the office will be at the SFNL headquarters.

“The hub will be overseen by the regional board. This is the part we’re working through, but we’re considering that the board will consist of five members; one representative each from the SFNL, SJFNL and the Millewa, and two other board members.

For more of this story, purchase your copy of Friday’s Sunraysia Daily 10/05/2013.

Trevor Heaft

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Wimmera to vote on Australian Constitution change

WIMMERA residents will vote on local government recognition in the Australian Constitution when they go to the polls on September 14.
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Prime Minister Julia Gillard announced on Thursday thata referendum would be part of the federal election.

The national vote was a pre-election commitment by the Australian Labor Party during the 2010 federal election campaign.

Referendums, which require a majority of Australians and a majority of states to pass, are notoriously unsuccessful with just eight of the nation’s 44 votes being approved.

Ararat Rural City Council chief executive Andrew Evans said councils had been fighting for years to correct the ‘glitch’ in the Constitution that failed to recognise local government.

He said it would allow the Federal Government to direct money straight to councils rather than having to go through state governments.

“I think the Constitution needs to be updated to reflect the modern world and to reflect what we do in practice,” he said.

“Local government is surely here to stay so that should be recognised in the Constitution.

“The best thing for the overall community is for local government to be fitted into the Constitution.

“We are the tier of government closest to the community and it is only right and proper for us to be recognised.”

Northern Grampians Mayor Wayne Rice said constitutional recognition would act as a safeguard protecting local government.

“What people seem to forget is that there is more and more cost shifting from both upper levels of government to local government so you can’t do away with the people on the ground in councils,” he said.

“It will allow us direct access to the Federal Government so if they want to keep giving us more responsibility they can’t do away with us.

“There seems to be a bit of a ground swell in favour of this referendum.”

West Wimmera Shire Mayor Bruce Meyer said he was concerned that local government recognition would hand the Federal Government too much control over councils.

“If they want the right to be able to give grants directly to local government they could surely legislate it or work out a way to get it done,” he said.

“We still need to be dealing with our own states on the big issues for local government rather than going to Canberra with the Federal Government.

“I would reserve my judgment until we see the wording of this referendum legislation – is this a full takeover of control of local government by the Federal Government or are we just dealing with this direct funding issue?

“If it is a full takeover I am not interested.”

Horsham Mayor David Grimble said the referendum would require state support to be successful.

“Probably what we need to do is ensure that the public actually understand what this referendum is all about and its importance,” he said.

“The challenge is going to be to get all the states to support it too.”

Hindmarsh Mayor and Rural Councils Victoria chairman Rob Gersch said the referendum on September 14 would be the only chance for constitutional recognition for ‘many years’.

“It would be a lifetime to have another crack at it so it is imperative it is successful,” he said.

“The success rate of referendums is not good so when you go to a referendum you have to be fairly sure you are going to win it.

“If all state governments are on board and willing to support it, I am happy to roll with it.”

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Staying mum on maternity leave

Tony Abbott’s paid parental leave plan will be a big incentive for women in the workforce to have children, according to Member for Calare John Cobb.TRADITIONAL political stereotypes have turned on their head in the current debate over maternity leave entitlements.
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Opposition leader Tony Abbott is standing by his controversial scheme that would see new mothers receive 26 weeks of maternity paid at the rate of their wage when they finished working, up to a salary of $150,000.

That means new mothers stand to receive up to $75,000 in maternity entitlements – significantly more generous than the existing scheme.

Currently, eligible new mothers can receive 18 weeks of maternity leave at the rate of the minimum wage – $606.40 a week, for a total of almost $11,000.

You would think women’s groups would be effusive in their praise for the Abbott proposal, but that has been far from the case.

With a few notable exceptions – such as feminist author Eva Cox – prominent women have been strangely muted in their support for the opposition scheme.

The reason, it seems, is that this is the same Tony Abbott who was famously labelled a misogynist in federal parliament last year. And his reputation precedes him in this instance.

So rather than laud Mr Abbott’s support for working women – to be funded by a levy on Australia’s biggest companies – much of the commentary has instead focused on the inherent inequality of the scheme.

That’s certainly a valid criticism, of course, because paying wealthier women more in maternity entitlements than poorer women is some sort of reverse means testing.

But isn’t this a time when pragmatism should triumph over principle?

Under the Abbott scheme, even the lowest paid women in the country will receive more in maternity entitlements than under the Gillard scheme.

By playing the man and not the policy in this case, all women will end up the poorer.

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Farmers struggle after record dry spell

WIMMERA farmers are struggling as the region’s record dry spell continues through autumn.
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In a statement released earlier this week, the Bureau of Meteorology said the seven months up to April 30 had been the driest on record for many agricultural regions in western Victoria.

South-eastern Australia continues to experience severe rain deficiencies and April rainfall was below average for most of Victoria.

Rainfall deficiencies in the Wimmera range from severe to lowest on record for the seven months.

Beulah farmer Ross Williams said he had never seen it this dry before.

“It is having a huge effect on us,” he said.

“We are thinking about changing to different crops and different varieties.

“We have dropped off canola and are doing a lot of thinking at the moment.”

Mr Williams said he had started dry sowing.

“I don’t really like doing it that way, but we had to do something,” he said.

“But if we don’t get rain soon, we won’t grow anything.

“I’m hoping someone has a nice crystal ball that can tell us what will happen.”

Goroke farmer Andrew Robertson said he had started dry sowing beans.

“It is often dry at this time of year, but this is a much longer dry period than we have had in the past,” he said.

“I would love to get some good rain so we can start throwing seeds into damp soil.”

Nhill farmer Andrew Colbert said this year’s start to the season was a familiar scenario for him.

“Nhill had a drought last year, so it is business as usual for us,” he said.

“We put all our crops in dry last year, so we are doing it that way again.

“We have actually had about 20 more millimetres of rain than this time last year.”

Department of Primary Industries agronomist Chris Sounness said the majority of Wimmera farmers had started dry sowing.

“There are different risks involved with dry sowing,” he said.

“If farmers sow before the break, the crop can come up more quickly and be more advanced at the end of the season,” he said.

“But there are risks of poor emergence and frost damage.”

He said some farmers were hesitant to sow canola.

“People are waiting to see what happens through May and will decide whether to sow it or not later on,” he said.

Bureau of Meteorology forecaster Stephen King said there wasn’t much rain expected for the Wimmera in the coming week.

“We have a band coming through on Sunday, but it will only bring about five millimetres of rain,” he said.

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Cloncurry on Virgin radar

EMERGING mining town Cloncurry is set to move one step closer to being linked to Brisbane via airline Virgin Australia.
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Representatives from Virgin Australia will meet with industry heads and local businesses in Cloncurry next week to discuss the possibility of linking the town to Brisbane.

Cloncurry Shire Council CEO David Neeves said the council initiated the visit after meeting with Virgin Australia in Brisbane recently.

Mr Neeves said council’s role was to give the airline an opportunity to meet with businesses in the community that would be likely to commit to regular usage of a Brisbane to Cloncurry flight service.

“We met with Virgin representatives in Brisbane a few months ago and presented a number of letters from mining companies, doctors and other members of the community considered to be high air travel users,” he said.

“From those discussions they committed to come to Cloncurry and have a look and hopefully the numbers stack up.”

The representatives will be welcomed to Cloncurry with a tour of the current airport, a facility council plans to upgrade in line with growing passenger numbers.

“Last year we had 50,000 passengers through the airport but this year to date we’ve exceeded 80,000,” Mr Neeves said.

“With mines beginning construction soon we expect see that number exceeding 140,000 in the future.”

Council will also hold a luncheon and presentation afternoon for the visitors to provide an opportunity for local business, health professionals and mining industry representatives to discuss their transport needs with the airline.

“Virgin are wanting to understand the opportunities out here as part of their business planning,” Mr Neeves said.

“If we could get a direct Brisbane to Cloncurry service it would make the shire a very attractive place to live.”

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Park burn-off bureaucracy gone mad

CATTLE farmers bordering the Moorrinya National Park, 90km south of Torrens Creek, are fighting to stop Queensland Parks and Recreation from conducting a scheduled burn off next week.
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Graziers watching their cattle struggle to survive in severe drought conditions have signed a petition to stop the burning and allow cattle onto the national park land, an opportunity afforded to other producers north of Hughenden and the Upper Burdekin in recent days.

John Glimore from Cranford Station, adjacent to the park, said an email notifying graziers of the scheduled burn-off added insult to injury.

“They haven’t given a definite date but the neighbours said they emailed them saying they’d burn it off next week,” he said.

“That’s called rubbing salt into the wound – they’re going to burn it off while hungry cattle watch from the other side of the fence.”

Mr Gilmore spoke at the Richmond Beef Crisis Summit on Tuesday, telling of the distress farmers faced every year watching good fodder on the parklands burn up.

While the petition to halt back-burning at Moorrinya circulated yesterday, two producers north of Hughenden had more reason to rejoice after the Newman Government accepted their requests to run cattle on Blackbraes Resources Reserve, 170km north of Hughenden.

National Parks Minister Steve Dickson said while grazing on national parks tenures remained prohibited under the Nature Conservation Act, other tenures may be made available for such use on some occasions.

“The reason these farmers require hardship grazing is because their situations are dire and urgent and accordingly the department agreed to make the property available for a short time,” he said.

“Wildfires late last year, exacerbated by prolonged drought conditions, have destroyed grazing fodder on pastoral holdings near Blackbraes Resources Reserve, north of Hughenden.

“This is not a solution which will always be available and will always be decided on a case-by-case basis, however I am glad to be able to offer help in this instance, when it’s needed most by Queensland farmers.”

Hughenden mayor Gregory Jones said allowing cattle to chew down over-grown grasses on national parks like Blackreas could actually remove the need for a burn-off.

“Normally they don’t look after the national parks so at least somebody is in there chewing the grass down and helping stop the fire hazard,” he said.

“It’s good to see they (the government) are using their brains a bit to use the cattle take care of the place.”

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Is Ferguson the greatest coach of all time?

The sight of the bright red cheeks of Sir Alex Ferguson intensely chewing gum on the sideline at Old Trafford is set to become a memory after the great Scot announced the end of his 27 years in charge of Manchester United.
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The curtains may be about to close on a managerial career that boasted 49 trophies, but the debate about whether he was the greatest ever is set to begin in bars, cafes, restaurants and around office water coolers.

It’s hard to find a better football coach by the numbers. Ten-time manager of the year, 13-time English Premier League champion, two-time European champion and a coach that has reared more winning players than Bart Cummings has horses. Few football coaches challenge those feats, although perhaps some of Australia’s greats from other codes come close.

In 2010, Harry Kewell spruiked for one coach to make the transition to Australian football. It wasn’t any of his former bosses in the English Premier League, but rugby league great Wayne Bennett. “The way he manages people and deals with sportsmen, surely he’d be worth a look at for football,” Kewell said.

Much like Ferguson, Bennett will be remembered as the man that transformed one club into the powerhouse of their competition. His 21 years at the helm of Brisbane Broncos delivered six premierships and turned the Queensland club into the most consistent performers in the NRL for two decades. While Bennett’s trophy cabinet may not be overflowing to the extent of Ferguson’s, his achievements with the Broncos – and later with St George – are perhaps equally astonishing due to the constraints presented by the NRL salary cap.

While former Collingwood and Brisbane Lions boss Leigh Matthews boasts one of the most enviable win-loss records in AFL, it’s Kevin Sheedy who is perhaps the closest Australian to replicating the longevity of Ferguson. The charismatic Aussie rules guru led Essendon’s Bombers from 1981 until 2007 and guided the club to four flags across three generations of players. Sheedy won back-to-back titles in 1984 and ’85 and tasted grand final success again in 1993. He had to endure another lengthy break between titles before he returned Essendon to the podium in 2000.

From football to stumps, John Buchanan’s eight-year career with Cricket Australia delivered some of the nation’s best success across all formats. A former teacher, Buchanan was renowned for his versatility with his man-management style and his adaptability lead to results such as a whitewash in the Ashes and two ICC World Cups. Upon his own retirement, Michael Hussey attributed much of his personal success to the style of Buchanan’s coaching.

“I felt he knew what to say to you according to your personality. He knew how to motivate the different players according to what made them tick. He understood personalities, and to me he was very positive, reinforcing and encouraging all the time.” Mike Hussey told ESPN.

Footballing rivals

Ferguson’s legacy at Manchester United and the dynasty he established separates his career from many other great football managers.

Unlike Jose Mourinho, Marcelo Lippi, Fabio Capello and other iconic coaches, Ferguson did not depart Old Trafford after his first few champagne showers, nor did he subside to the mounting pressure during the difficult spells.

The 71 year-old Scot’s long and successful era with United draws parallels to that of former Real Madrid boss Miguel Munoz. The Spaniard won three European Cups with Real Madrid in the 1950s as a player and became the first person to win the continent’s greatest prize as a player and a coach when he lifted the cup in 1960, just two years after his retirement.

His 14-year spell as Madrid’s manager is widely seen as the platform for their legacy as one of the most successful clubs of any sport. Munoz went on to win another European Cup in 1966, won La Liga nine times as well as three Copa del Rey titles. He had stints with Sevilla, Las Palmas and Granada before taking charge of the Spanish national team but never lived up to the success he earned at Madrid. His win-loss ratio was dragged down in the latter stages of his career but still equalled that which Ferguson earned at Manchester United.

A name that may not be familiar with many sports fans in Australia but is often brought up when discussing Ferguson is Valeryi Lobanovskyi.

The Ukrainian held a 21-year tutelage of Dynamo Kyiv across two stints and guided the Soviet Union team for 15 years before its collapse. In his first season in charge of Dynamo, he won the 1974 Soviet league and cup double and went on to win 31 more trophies. He became the first coach to guide a Soviet club to a continental title when he won the 1975 UEFA Cup Winners Cup. Given he was aided by the two-horse race that became the Ukrainian top-tier following the Soviet collapse, his achievements could not live up to Ferguson’s.

In what will be the Scot’s 1500th and last game as a coach, many will reflect on a white banner that was held up at Old Trafford in 1989. “3 years of excuses and we’re still crap, ta-ra Fergie.” Twenty-four years, 38 pieces of silver, a bronze statue and knighting later, that fan will not just farewell his club’s greatest ever manager, but perhaps one of the best of all sports.

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