January 1 - The World Trade Organisation was founded to police world trade and to push for free trade.
April 19 - A former US soldier, Timothy McVeigh, detonated a car bomb outside the Federal Building in Oklahoma. Of the 167 victims, 15 were children.
28 April - The viewing platform at Cave Creek in the Paparoa National Park collapses falling 30 metres into the ravine below. 13 students on a field trip from the Tai Poutini Polytechnic in Greymouth were killed along with the Department of Conservation Punakaiki Field Centre Manager. The other 4 students on the platform at the time were injured, some very seriously.
NZ and the Black Magic boat, beat the USA to win the America's Cup, the worlds oldest sporting trophy.
The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh visit.
The city centre tramway opens.
John Britten dies.
The World Golden Oldies rugby is held and the Ch0Ch Arts Festival is launched.
Last Saturday night, on a stretch of road between Ashburton and Hinds, harness racing lost a youth of great character; a horseman of immense potential. Driving alone, 19-year-old Darren De Filippi was involved in a three-car accident that cost him his life.
The last of his 264 career drives was on Stambro, who died in a separate accident on the same road, on the same day.
To say Darren De Filippi was a role model, a bright light amongst the apprentices in th industry, was a fact. He was bred to be nothing else. His father Colin has long been at the top of his profession and his mother Julie is the daughter of the highly-respected trainer and mentor, Bill Denton.
Right from the start, Darren made his career plans obvious. As a 13-year-old, in the holidays and weekends he would bike off to the stables of Robert Dunn where the education started by his parents would continue. He told Robert he had better horses than his father. He got away with that. When he was old enough, he asked Robert for a job. "He just sat in the cart like a natural. He had a lovely set of hands. And he had an easy rapport with owners, trainers and all those he had dealings with," he said. Employed ever since then by Robert, Darren won his first race behind Judicial at Addington in September, 1994, and finished with nine wins. This season, from 70 drives, he had driven six winners.
His qualities were again recognised off the track at the annual cadet night prize-giving at Addington on Monday night, where he won three awards - the J S Dalgety prize, the second prize for third-year cadet, and the cadet representative prize. In his first year as a cadet, he won the prestigous Regional Training Officers prize. "He had human qualities well beyond his years," said Cadet Director, Jack Mulcay. Everwhere you turned, everyone had the same opinion."
Along with his renowned politeness - his seniors were always addressed as "Mister" - Darren had the ambition to reach the top as a driver. "He asked me at morning tea on Wednesday if I would let him drive down south because he wanted to have a real crack at the South Island junior drivers title. I said he could, and we would sit down and work out the best way to go about it," said Robert.
Bill Denton said Darren loved all sport, but lived for his horses. "He was a super kid," he said. That was a quality about Darren that made him the fine, young man that he was. He touched the lives of many with his open, engaging and cheerful manner; his ability to enjoy the success of others as much as his own. His grandfather, who so enjoyed his company, and could see the future he had, is thankful for the times they had together..."but it's something I wanted more of."
You speak for us all, Bill.
Credit: Mike Grainger writing in HRWeekly 29Nov95
Anne Wilson, who bred and raced some of NZ's greatest horses, died last Friday. She was 91. Mrs Wilson was the wife of the late Andy Wilson, a former secretary of the Wyndham Harness Racing Club.
Freeman Holmes, now retired from a notable career as a leading Canterbury studmaster and trainer, recalls Mrs Wilson as "a highly respected person, whom I had a lovely association with." Holmes found her modesty while racing the great pacer Noodlum together as one of her personality strengths.
Many years earlier her husband had been given the fine pacer Nell Grattan, who had been trained by Stan Edwards to win nine races. From Nell Grattan, they bred Tactics, a top racemare who won the New Brighton Cup and 10 other races from the stable of Maurice Holmes and after being sold left to Hal Tryax the outstanding young pacer, Tactile. Tactics also left Deft, a daughter of Captain Adios who produced Noodlum to Bachelor Hanover.
After an illustrious career on the track, in which he won 28 races, Noodlum was twice leading sire in New Zealand and for the past two seasons has been leading broodmare sire.
A keen and very capable golfer, Mrs Wilson bred Adroit, winner of the Golden Slipper Stakes, and won the Oamaru Juvenile Stakes with Petite.
She is survived by a son, Brian.
Credit: NZ HRWeekly 23Aug95
Owen Quinlan, who died suddenly aged 75 last week - two days after playing 18 holes of golf - was a low profile trainer who had his share of good horses.
He drove more than 100 winners and trained the outstanding trotting mare Uteena to win 18 races from his Rolleston stable. Quinlan took particular satisfaction in training trotters, and never in his career raced one with a toe-weight or a half-hopple.
Uteena, a daughter of U Scott, was the best he had. Her wins included a heat of the Inter-Dominions at Forbury Park, where she beat Acquit and Tronso but ran unplaced in Poupette's final; she won the Bridgens Free-For-All at Alexandra Park twice, from Scotleigh and Highland Flight, and French Pass and Rannach Lad; she beat Mountain Pride and Mighty Chief in the Reta Peter Handicap on Show Day at Addington, and she ran third to Tronso in the 1966 Dominion Handicap.
He also returned Aronmot - who had not won at six, seven and eight - to winning form as a nine-year-old, his two wins at that age including the Festival Trotters Championship at Forbury Park.
Quinlan came from Greymouth, starting his career with Jack Shaw. His first win was with Loyal Peg on his home track in 1945, and his first at Addington was a year later, in the Canterbury Juvenile Stakes with the Grattan Loyal filly, Darkie Grattan. He rated Zenith, who won eight, among them the Marlborough Centennial Cup; and Antonius, who won six, as his best pacing winners.
Other good winners were Morano mare Monarrg, who beat Royal Ascot and Walk Alone in a heat of the Dunedin Festival Cup; Castleton's Gift(nine), Chatmos(five), Vivace(five), Le Whip(five), Court Verdict, Sir Hall, Aunt Ada, Siki, Toll Call, Rory, Loylan, Fyvie Queen, Composite, Soubrette, Fifth Brigade, Deuce, Lord Springfield, Frozina, Frozen, Sir Leonard and Margaret Logan.
By his own admittance, Quinlan never trained a top horse, but it was something that never affected the pleasure he had for harness racing. On his retirement, he said: "No, I guess I have not had the vital ounce of luck to get a really top horse of my own, but it hasn't made my time in the game any less enjoyable. And I suppose, I have been luckier than some."
He is survived by his wife Francis and son Michael.
Credit: Mike Grainger writing in HRWeekly 4Oct95
The death occurred last week of Clarry May, a prominent Methven identity who started his career as a blacksmith but made his mark later as a trainer.
Aged 88, Clarry was born in Southland, and married Anne Robinson 63 years ago. After an engineering apprenticeship, he became a blacksmith and trained a horse while his three sons, Clyde, Terry and Leo grew up. He eventually gave way to family pressure, bought a farm and increased his stable numbers to a dozen.
His major success was the Auckland Cup he won in 1946 with Loyal Nurse but he rated Aerobee one of the best he had. A mare by Highland Chief, Aerobee did not start racing until she was six, and won six races. He took Oreti through to Cup class, and forged a winning partnership with his son, Terry.
Other smart horses he trained were Adios Adieu, Walk Alone, Royal Walk, Fanciful, Ruling River, the trotters Tasman and Glen Dee, Stroll Away and Deeside. One of the best was Banjo, a son of Young Bob he gave Anne after forgetting to buy her a birthday present. Banjo won nine races.
Among Clarry's six grandchildren is top driver Ricky May.
Credit: NZ HRWeekly 23Aug95
Hanmer Ronald Monk, a keen harness racing enthusiast and prominent owner, died in Greymouth last week.
The 76-year-old, publican was known to most Canterbury race followers and was a regular at Methven meetings and others in the Mid-Canterbury region.
Formerly mine host at the old Bealey Hotel, Ham, as Mr Monk was known to all who knew him, took over the Paroa Hotel in 1954 and until his death was the oldest publican on the West Coast.
Ham was a great follower of the straight out trotter and over the years owned many fine runners. While Ray Morris trained for him in Greymouth in early years, Colin Berkett and then Max Miller became the mentor of his horses in later years.
One of his best squaregaiters was Westham which clocked up eight wins in NZ and was a top third to Tussle in the 1987 Inter-Dominion Trotters' Grand Final at Addington when he was trapped out three wide from the 1800m and then parked from the 800m. Princess Armbro won nine from Miller's stable and is being bred from.
Other good performers owned by Ham included Mendlespride(6 wins), Paroa(5), Central Range(5), Berwin(4), Broderick Bay(3), Mosaic(3), Special Princess(3) and Battle Colours(3). Most of these, including Westham and Princess Armbro, were descendants of the Supersonic mare Special Offer.
Ham is survived by his wife Corrie and sons Bernie and Winston.
Credit: NZ HRWeekly 16Aug95
In what could easily be described as the most controversial Inter Dominion of them all Victorian Golden Reign scored from Victor Supreme and Young Mister Charles. Golden Reign had to survive a protest from Anthony Butt for alleged interference to local mare Blossom lady before being declared the winner while both placed horses were later disqualified for returning positive swabs.
He was worth waiting for.
The question lurking but unsaid for weeks...whether youthful Il Vicolo was old enough, tough enough, man enough to take on the pack of seasoned older campaigners in the DB Draught NZ Cup over 3200 metres.
Tuesday's Addington outcome proved he was - absolutely.
Indeed, he had to pull out qualities he's never fully used before as first Master Musician and then Just Royce tested his courage and stamina dowmn the straight. Master Musician, feeling pain in his feet as pressure grew, drifted into the middle of the track and gently, slowly, fell back. No sooner had he left the pitface than he was replaced by a cheeky freshman, the M6 13th fancy, Just Royce. Hailed in few quarters - though Ashburton was one of them - Just Royce came at Il Vicolo like a dart. For more than a moment, he seemed likely to find his mark and tear off one of the great upsets of all time. "I had a good run all the way," beamed driver John Hay. "He felt tremendous on the turn. I kept passing them all in the straight, thinking I'd be fourth and getting closer all the time," he said. "For a moment, I thought it was going to be a dream come true," he said. It developed into such excitement in the end that already the older brigade amongst us are booked in for next year, and new fans will be waiting at the door.
The race very nearly had a fairly-tale ending, not for Il Vicolo who proved he's as cool as his trainer in a tight corner but Just Royce was one of three late invitees, paying more than $100 to win. Down at the top of the straight, 200 metres from the finish, Denice Swain, the trainer of Just Royce, didn't know what was happening. She saw the pair of them disappear in good style, changing ground as they went, but didn't know till later how close it had been. "I knew he'd go a great two miles. I had absolute confidence in him doing that. I was worried about putting him straight into this class, but I knew the owners would love it. I did the same with him as I did with Clancy the year he ran second in the Cup to Christopher Vance. He's such a lazy trackworker, it's hard to get a real line on him."
Buried deep for the entire race as he was, Just Royce didn't have to make any mid race moves. Purdon made his with Il Vicolo with more than a lap to run, when he followed up Ginger Man to settle like a gentleman outside Burlington Bertie. Master Musician came up with him. Robert Dunn, in the sulky of the 'Master' hollered at Purdon to see if he would ease, so he could slip across and give him cover. "He didn't even look round," said Dunn. Hoppy's Jet and Tigerish were handy on the inner, and Blossom Lady, tracked by Desperate Comment, were poised in the third line, Ginger Man just ahead of them. "I was a bit lucky that when I went up with a lap to run Burlington Bertie didn't race me," said Purdon. But the move still worried him. "I thought getting down to the quarter that I'd asked him too much...I'd set it up for the others behind me. I was going good enough, but I thought something would come at me. On the corner, I didn't really expect to win," he said. With one or two exceptions, neither did anyone else.
The race was run at a true pace, taking Il Vicolo 4:00.4, which equals the record for the race set by Luxury Liner in 1988.
It has been said before, and it's worth saying again, the Purdon, aged 31 and in his first season as a public trainer, and Cantabrian part-owner John Seaton are great sportsmen and ambassadors for harness racing. If there is any part of it that Seaton could well do without, it's making speeches. Now that Il Vicolo has won 21 races - from 26 starts - he is something of an old hand at it and he took the precaution of being prepared for this one. Purdon takes the pressure in his stride, just as the horse does.
A 4-year-old by Vance Hanover from Burgundy Lass, Il Vicolo has now won $976,777. Seaton had been buying Vance Hanovers in recent times, and thought if he stuck to stock by the top sire he might one day get a great horse. The winning hand was spending $21,000 for a black colt from Burgundy Lass offered by Yarndley Farms at Karaka. Burgundy Lass was a qualified but unraced mare by Noodlum from the Rosehaven family that has produced such standouts as Black Watch (14 wins), Remarkable (1:53.2), Reba Lord, The Unicorn, National Image and Pacific Flight. Il Vicolo is an entire with huge potential as a stud horse when he eventually ends his career. In the meantime, he is a star we cannot have enough of. Treasure him while we can.
Credit: Mike Grainger writing in HR Weekly
1995 AIR NEW ZEALAND NZ FREE-FOR-ALL
One month ago Il Vicolo did not have the Cup meeting on his programme but on Friday afternoon he was seen in action completing the DB Draught NZ Cup - Air New Zealand Free-For-All double. It was a dream result for first season trainer Mark Purdon and Canterbury owner John Seaton who now own a one million dollar pacer in Il Vicolo.
The hansome Vance Hanover entire joins a select group to achieve this including Blossom Lady, Master Musician, Chokin, Luxury Liner and Christopher Vance. Il Vicolo was recording his 22nd win and increased his earnings to $1,026,777. "Early in the season I wasn't really considering the Cup with him as a 4-year-old," said Purdon. "He has handled it well and done a marvellous job." Il Vicolo became the 25th horse to complete the NZ Cup-FFA double and just the third 4-year-old to do this joining Lookaway (1957) and Lordship (1962).
Purdon believes Il Vicolo could run a 1:53 mile given the right conditions but was not tempted to change his mind and accept an invitation to race Il Vicolo in the Monsanto Mile. "He has had two hard runs and the Monsanto looks like being a real hard race," said Purdon. The next race on Il Vicolo's programme is the $70,000 Pak N Save Franklin Cup (M5 and faster, 3200m) at Alexandra Park. Purdon will be looking for his second win in the feature after guiding home Mark Roy to win two years ago.
Long term targets for Il Vicolo include the $250,000 Auckland Cup on December 27 and A G Hunter and Victoria Cups at Moonee Valley in February. He is likely to bypass the Inter-Dominions in Perth next year.
Il Vicolo, who won a double during Cup week 12 months ago including a win in the rich Sires' Stakes Final, had the draw against him in the Free-For-All. But leaving from the outside of the second line over the sprint distance did not hinder Il Vicolo who reached the lead after the first 800 metres. "He got to the lead with few problems with Ricky (May, driver of Lento) handing it over to us," said Purdon. "He was holding them pretty easily at the finish and had something left." He paced his last 800m in 56.8 and the mobile 2000m in 2:25.1 - the second fastest time recorded in the Free-For-All but well outside Armalight's clocking.
Purdon trained the quinella with Brabham, who finished fourth in the NZ Cup, charging home late for second one and a quarter lengths away. "He has done a wonderful job considering how many starts (17) he's had," said Purdon. "He went a huge race," added driver Maurice McKendry. Brabham will also take in the Franklin Cup at his next attempt.
Lento held third just a head away after taking the trail behind Il Vicolo for the last lap with NZ Cup runner-up Just Royce another head back in fourth place. "It was a good run from Lento," said May. "I had to use her up early and she looked like getting second half way down."
Credit: Philip O'Connor writing in the NZHR Weekly
Call Me Now confirmed his top seeding among the square-gaiters by winning the $100,000 DB Draught Dominion Handicap but this result may well have been different according to Eastburn Grant's driver Ken Barron.
"Eastburn Grant knocked his leg and missed a lot of work and had just one fast workout in the eight days following Show day," said Barron. "Up until Thursday morning we didn't know if he would start or not and he only did because it was the Dominion Handicap. Even going the time they did - if he was fully fit they would not have run him down."
The race was an exciting spectacle and many of the beaten runners were left gasping as Barron and Eastburn Grant set up a national record breaking pace. "After the start I saw Pride Of Petite begin well and I was rapt as I thought we could get the trail for the race," said Barron. "But she galloped soon after and we were left in front; I was not confident to lead all the way and win."
Call Me Now, driven by David Butt and Diamond Field made good starts from the 10 metre mark and secured prominent positions early. Chiola Cola trailed Eastburn Grant and this quartet - in the first four from the 2000m - dominated the finish. Little happened in the middle stages of the race as Chiola Cola, Call Me Now and Diamond Field were just trying to keep tabs on a flying Eastburn Grant. In the latter stages Diamond Field started to feel the pinch and it was left to Chiola Cola and Call Me Now to put the acid on Eastburn Grant. Under desperate urgings from Butt, Call Me Now dug deep in the straight and just managed to get up and beat Eastburn Grant by a short neck. Chiola Cola and Shane Hayes were trying to make their challenge between the pair with little room to do so. They were only a neck back in third place and one and a half lengths in front of Diamond Field. "I thought he may have been a little unlucky - the gap did open in the straight but too late," said Hayes. "I'm not saying he could have beaten Call Me Now or Eastburn Grant as they are two great trotters but I'm sure he would have finished even closer.
Call Me Now trotted the 3200m in 4:05.7 - 0.9 of a second inside David Moss's NZ Record produced in this race last year. "It has been great to win this race and an Inter-Dominion Final," said trainer Paul Nairn. Nairn (34) knew he had Call Me Now at his peak for the Group 1 feature. "I thought there was a little improvement in him after Cup Week," he said. "He has had a quiet time since his win on Show day and we have concentrated mainly on road work - it seem to suit him."
Call Me Now is in the prime of his career and an exciting opportunity to race in Europe in May is not out of the question. Before this Call Me Now is likely to travel north and contest feature races at Alexandra Park at Christmas time. Whether he defends hie Inter-Dominion crown at Moonee Valley in February depends on the handicap he will receive during the series. This year's seriesin New Zealand used the mobile start. "If he got 10m or 15m it would probably be alright but 20m to 30m is handicapping him out of it and would be too tough around a track like Mooney Valley," said Butt.
Raced by Paul with his father Graeme, Helen Pope and Gwynn Thomson, Call Me Now has recorded 21 wins and 12 placings for $365,770 in stakes.
Credit: Philip O'Connor writing in HRNZ Weekly
Iman picked up where stablemate Paula Michele left off by winning the $60,000 Nevele R Stud New Zealand Oaks on a dismally wet night.
Ten days earlier, Paula Michele, also trained by Brian Hughes, was untested to score in the Nevele R New Zealand Sires' Stakes Fillies Championship. Both were driven by Maurice McKendry, who has found rich pickings at Addington this season from age group races. In February, he won the $180,000 New Zealand Yearling Sales Series final for 2-year-olds behind Kamwood Kango.
And on Friday night, McKendry is poised for an even bigger payout. He will steer Iman in the $100,000 DB Draught Fillies Final - and few will have one to beat her after her Oaks success - and Kamwood Kango in the $150,000 ANZ Bank Sires' Stakes Final. While Kamwood Kango will have his work cut out against Corumba, The Court Owl and other high-class 2-year-olds, Iman should get her way against the fillies.
Iman went into the Oaks without recent racing, although she had had two trials since winning at Auckland on March 31. McKendry had her trailing on the outer, but he abandoned that shelter after 800 metres and was soon in front. "She's a good stayer. I thought she would win the race by outstaying them," said McKendry. Iman never gave McKendry a moment's worry, even when OK Laura made a lightning dab along the inside right at the end, and Go Anna and Vance Royale made a rush wider made a rush wider out to dead-heat for third. "She's got a bit of class and she will probably improve a bit with that run," he said. Hughes agrees. "She will improve a ton," he said. Hughes modestly says Iman is "above average" but McKendry was more to the point when he said: "She is the best 3-year-old filly I have driven. She's been lucky with her draws, but she has won from three back, and she's won from sitting parked."
Hughes, who races Iman with long-standing stable client Don Cudby, has gained such excellent results by breeding to the best he can. Both Paula Michele and Iman are daughters of the wonderful stallion Vance Hanover, also sire of the grand racemare Vulcan Lady who went to Cup class for Hughes and Cudby before being sold.
The loss of Vance Hanover to the racing industry was emphasised by Mr Bob McArdle, co-proprietor with Wayne Francis of Nevele R Stud, in his presentation of the Oaks trophy. Runner-up OK Laura is from the first crop of Nevele R sire, OK Bye.
Credit: Mike Grainger writing in HRNZ Weekly
Champion 3-year-old Il Vicolo made a clean sweep of the John Brandon series, just as everyone thought he would. He led for all but the first 200m of the New Zealand Derby, and gave the others a sound beating, as he had done in the first two legs of the classic.
His next assignment is the Great Northern Derby, which will mark the end of a brief second-season campaign in which the best of his age group have been unable to test him, and in most cases were outclassed. Part-owner and driver Mark Purdon said it was likely that he would start off next season against the Cup horses... "We will plan it like that. We could race him in the New Zealand Cup next season," he said. Purdon said the key factor to Il Vicolo being so superior is his attitude. "He is very relaxed. He's a horse you can use up in a race, and he doesn't take a lot of work," he said.
Il Vicolo, who has now won nine races in succession and 15 from 18 starts, is part owned by Canterbury farmer John Seaton, who also has with Purdon a Soky's Atom 2-year-old from Il Vicolo's family, and a Vance Hanover colt from the Mark Lobell mare Bevie (dam of Alba Lobell) he will race in partnership with Tony Herlihy.
Ready For Love ran second, after driver Graham Ward made use of his gate speed to cross first, knowing Il Vicolo would give him cover. Mark Purdon did that before the 2200m, and Ready For Love made the most of a sit trip by lasting better than Brocketsbrae for second.
Credit: Philip O'Connor writing in HRNZ Weekly