For the past twenty years I have been fortunate enough to call the Adelaide Cup. Truly it has been a great honour to be part of South Australian racing in such a capacity.
I grew up in a family home on Austral Terrace, parallel to Bray Street, which runs alongside the back straight of the beautiful Morphettville racecourse.
Racehorse stables were directly over my back fence and as a youngster I would frequent the stables of such trainers as Bill Smart and Ted Cameron.
My love for the Industry on all fronts was immeasurable, the horses, the jockeys, the trainers, the contest, just everything about it, and yes the race callers too.
As a teenager I remember some of the famous victories.
77 – Reckless for Tommy Woodcock, the man who strapped Phar Lap
78 – Hyperno – enigmatic, but a true star of the Australian Turf
In my 20’s, and the 80’s, the outstanding Kiwi Lord Reims stole the show. He won the Cup incredibly three years straight from 87-89
Three wins stand out for me in the 90’s.
92 – Subzero – who is still alive today and an Australian racing treasure
96 – French Resort ridden by a youthful Jason “Stubby” Holder for Colin Alderson
98 – The Hind trained by the late Peter Hayes and remembered also for the appearance of Kylie Minogue at our Cup meeting
The two Adelaide Cup broadcasts of 2000 and 2019, that bookend my twenty calls, will be the two I probably have the most significant attachment to, but for far different reasons.
In the year of 2000, my Dad shortly before the Cup, was diagnosed with Leukemia and had little time to live. Mum and Dad were enjoying Trackside dining at Morphettville the day the Cup was to be run, but the meeting due to heavy rain was postponed just prior to the Cup’s running.
Instead the Cup, won by Bohemiath, was run and won the following Saturday at Victoria Park, but my parents in the meantime had jetted off to England so my Dad could say goodbye to his family back in his home country.
My last Cup call was special for me on many fronts, even more so now in my retirement from calling.
It was my twentieth, (a nice personal number milestone), it would turn out to be my last unknowingly, (with my decision to join Racing.Com in July), and the winner Surprise Baby, what a remarkable story.
To win the Adelaide Cup at just his sixth race start and later that year go on to run a mighty fifth in the Melbourne Cup, I feel without doubt, if he remains sound, he could be the greatest horse I was lucky enough to call winning an Adelaide Cup.
This year I look forward to a new chapter in my Adelaide Cup experiences.
With Racing.Com, bringing the atmosphere and colour from the track to the viewing public around the country.
Being there first hand to speak to the jubilant winning connections.
Bring on Monday March 9, I can’t wait.