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PROTRACK » GENERAL » Woodside Wrap

Woodside Wrap

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1 Woodside Wrap on Mon Dec 20, 2010 3:34 pm



The Victorian Athletic League conducted the first Woodside Gift on Saturday at
Woodside Oval in Gippsland. After a morning of constant rain the weather cleared
to provide a mild afternoon with occasional sunshine. The event was organised by
Clint Hillas and provided the amenities and attractions that are usually associated
with long standing gifts. The ground was ringed with corporate sponsors, food
and beverage marquees, always a great slight at professional athletic meetings.
Clint and his vast array of workers conducted a carnival that the area can be very
proud. The Gippsland area has been without a big gift for several years and
Woodside should certainly fill that void.
The PRIME 800mts Final
The day started with the running of the Prime 800mts heats and final won by
Dominic Hoskins off 40mts in the time 1.54.5. Dominic, trained by Terry
McGarity, has shown impressive form this season with placings in finals at
Peninsula and Terang. Dominic went for home at the 200 metre mark and looked
a ‘sitting duck” for Justin Murphy and Darren Naismith but battled on well to win
comfortably from Mark Andrews who, as usual, stuck to his task right to the line.
70mts TEAL FINANCIAL Novice Final
Paul Bolton trained the winner of the 70mts novice with youngster Daniel Bruce,
running off 6mts in the time of 7.95. Daniel, previously the winner of the under
21’s at Keilor, has shown in only his second season that he is an athlete of above
average ability. A close second was Darren Rowland with Melissa Howard hanging
on for third.
Shaun Hargreaves continued on with his great start to the season with a
convincing win in the open 70mts running 7.72 off the handicap of 4.25m. Shaun,
trained by John Henry, reverted to the 70mts after his recent victory in the
Movember 550mts. Shaun continues to prove that he is one of the most versatile
athletes amongst the VAL ranks. Michael Bolton, off the track for long periods of
time thru injury, continues on his recovery path with a solid second. Adam Parkes
showed his best form of the season to grab third.
RACV 120mts Under 20’s Final
At only his second start with the VAL Jeremy Fernando captured the first
qualifying division of the RACV under 20’s. Jeremy competes with the
Sandringham Athletic Club and showed by his clear win, the valuable experience
he gained from his first start at Waverly last week. The placings were Paddy
McDonald, a training mate of the winner, and Michael Gatt, both new to the
Victorian Athletic League this season. This series will culminate with a final at
Stawell over Easter. Jeremy ran 13.72 off the handicap of 6mts.

The VAL distance running ranks were given a ‘wake up’ call on Saturday with the
win of Sam Quirk when he raced away with the open mile at his first VAL start.
Starting from the novice of 100mts and running the winning time of 4.11.8 Sam
worked his way thru the field early and then dashed for home at the 500mts
mark and increased his lead with every stride. Corey Lawson and Leon Brooks
battled into the placings but never looked likely. Sam is a local Traralgon boy and
will win better races in the current season. Josh Nolan was clearly best of the
backmarkers and ran on determinedly for fourth, leaving Cody Williamson and
Michael Marantelli a fair distance behind. Michael making another visit to the
“Bay” next week may be reduced to merely collecting the colours for the Hipworth
boys if he doesn’t find some form. Look for Josh, as with the winner, to be a
major player in the backmarkers events this season.
Tom Hecimovic, better known as the Repco Man on TV, finished the best to grab
victory in the womens/vets 300mts in the time 36.7 off 33mts. Tom ran down
Gary Blake and Dennis Hughes in the last few strides to give his coach Mark
Howard and thirsty stablemates a reason to celebrate. Tom has had a good start
to the season with a solid win at Tabcorp Park and a placing at Terang. “Blakey”
still searching for his first victory looked sure to win in the shadows of the post.
Dennis Hughes already a multiple placegetter this season looks sure to win in the
next few weeks.
Rejuvenated athlete Glenn Cooper destroyed the field in this round of the
Sportzbiz 400mts novice by clearing out early, having a breather at the 150mts
mark and then surging clear in the home straight. Trained by Todd Ireland, Glenn
is showing the best form of his career and adds Woodside to his Tabcorp Park
victory earlier in the season. His time of 48.36 off the handicap of 48 metres
gained more merit when compared to the open 400mts winning time of 48.5.
Daniel Bruce gained his second runner–up cheque for the day and Toshihko
Kataoka produced his best run of his first season to run third.
MAYOS BODY SHOP 400’s OPEN Handicap.
The in-form athlete of the season so far, Josh Mather, continued on his winning
way at Woodside by racing away with the open 400mts on Saturday. Josh
finished last season with wins at Burramine and Ballarat and began this season
with final appearances in both the 400mts and 800mts at Peninsula and
Northcote, winning the 800mts at Northcote followed by a second in the 400mts.
At Woodside Josh always looked the winner and won comfortably from novice
Sam Campbell and backmarkers Simon Fitzpatrick and Shaun Hargreaves. Josh
recently elevated to the VFL boundary umpires list looks as if he could just as
easily take up the spot at centre half forward for Carlton, and do we need one.
The 400mts completed a circle event double for trainer Terry McGarity who early
won with Dominic Hoskins.

The main event for the ladies was the NAB 120mts gift and it was won by Laura
Jane Hilditch in the time of 13.64 off 15.75mts. Laura Jane was the fastest heat
winner and left the final field in her wake winning by a margin usually associated
with distance events. Place-getters Kendra Hubbard and Charlotte Van Veen ran
great races off their handicaps of 5.75mts and 2.25mts and can be expected to
be in contention in all the Christmas Ladies races. Laura Jane has already had a
successful start to the season with a win at Epping and a placing at Movember.
Laura Jane’s father John and mother Rose were on site to witness the event with
Rose shedding a few tears to mark the occasion. Once again the winner was
trained by John Henry.
The major portion of the $15,000 prize pool looked certain to land in the pocket
of Darren Whittaker after clearly running the fastest heat time followed by an
equally impressive semi final victory. However, the John Henry trained Matthew
Hargreaves powered home in the final 10mts to hit the line in first place. Just as
Matthew was gaining an advantage over Darren he was confronted with a barn
storming finish from Adrian Mott who eventually finished second in 12.6 off
3.5mts. Matthew’s time was a very creditable 12.57 of his handicap of 6.25mts.
The win was the third for the day for John Henry who is now looking forward,
next week, to relieving the South Australians of some of their lucrative
prizemoney. John has never been frightened to travel with his runners and is
only too happy to produce the “ready-reckner” to assess the season thus far.
Let's hope that John can open his purse and some of the cash that usually only
goes in can make its way out to the bar in Adelaide. This author will be waiting in
Also making the trip is Woodside gift finalists Corwin Pusch and Adrian Mott who
showed on Saturday’s result that they will be more than competitive.
Spike notes from Woodside.
(1) Not only was John Henry the leading trainer at Woodside, he was also the
leading bookmaker, but only after the TAB van lost power and internet
connection. Rumour has it that John was spotted with a spanner and pair
of bolt cutters leaving the scene of the TAB breakdown. Inquiry pending.
(2) With Mark Hipworth and Chris Brown unable to make the trip to Woodside,
self appointed “captain” Michael Marantelli failed to worry the scorers with
his new stable unable to make it to the cashiers table to collect any
prizemoney. However, Michael never one to let adversity effect his
endeavour was last seen sharing a slab with his new charges and chief
starter Mr Bill Sutton. Maybe “Hippo” may wish to change his “chain of

(3) Whilst on the topic of Mr Sutton, the rumour file has it that Bill is seeking
an opportunity to improve his starting experience in the city of churches in
the next week. Let's hope he has filled out the required transfer papers.
(4) Single gentleman Tony Parsons spent a great deal of time at Woodside
discussing life with a particular lady in the coffee van. Tony, already a
resident of Gippsland, may be looking to spend a little more time down
Woodside way.
(5) Congratulations go to starter Matthew Webster and Dianne who recently
tied the knot. All those that know Matthew wish Dianne all the best.
(6) The $1000, 2000mts event at Noble Park (Feb 7th) is now an invitation
event. To be eligible runners must enter any other event at Noble Park.
For further details contact Mark Howard.
Our next event is the Maryborough Gift on Saturday 1st January 2011.
The Staff and Board of the VAL would like to wish everyone a Merry Christmas
and a safe and happy new year.

2 Re: Woodside Wrap on Mon Dec 20, 2010 7:20 pm

Bumble Bee Man

ProTrack Star
ProTrack Star
Great run by Matthew Hargreaves considering the times from the semis. Good runners always find a bit extra for a final. I remember watching him in the Final at the Mount one year where he was unlucky. That was a cracker of a race as too this one must have been. Also it is good to see Adrian Mott up and running again. He is a quality athlete and its a big positive for Pro running.

3 Re: Woodside Wrap on Wed Dec 22, 2010 11:07 pm

Iron Maiden

What a fantastic write up. I especially enjoyed the Spike notes!

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