Archive for: ‘May 2019’

Racing: Bjorn Baker breaking the rules but confident Songlike can measure up

13/05/2019 Posted by admin

Trainer Bjorn Baker knows he has a “nice horse” in Songlike. Photo: Jenny EvansWizard of Odds: Live Odds, Form and Alerts for all Racing
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Bjorn Baker doesn’t make a habit of starting off his two-year-olds in group 2s but he admitted Songlike will have more of a chance of winning Saturday’s Sweet Embrace Stakes than she would have had at Rosehill on Wednesday.

Baker has an opinion of the Your Song filly but after watching Limbo Soul land a plonk from $26 to $3.20 in the race he had originally targeted for her on debut, he was glad he waited until Saturday.

“Songlike was second emergency for that race, so we decided to wait rather than see if she would get a run on Wednesday. It might be a good thing we did, because the winner looked very good,” Baker said. “If she got beaten in a maiden it would have taken away some of my confidence.

“We have a filly that has impressed us at both her trials and there is good and bad things about jumping in at the deep end.

“We are going to find out very quickly where she stands and at this time of year that means she could put herself into the bigger races. If she wins she is in the Slipper,” the trainer said.

“But you are always worried about overestimating her ability.”

Songlike had to chase Golden Slipper favourite She Will Reign in her first barrier trial and although beaten by nine lengths by the flying filly on February 7, she had the others covered and then won her second trial a week later.

“It’s not often you get beaten by nine lengths in a barrier trial and come away happy, and think ‘I have a nice horse’,” Baker said. “She had six [lengths] on the rest of them and what impressed me was she was holding her own on She Will Reign in the straight.

“It was really like she won the trial because the other filly was so far in front she was in a different postcode. She came out and won her next trial, which just confirmed what I thought.”

Jason Collett was in the saddle for both trials and shares Baker’s high hopes.

“I really like her. She does things right,” Collett said. “It is a big step first-up but she is talented. We will find out how talented on Saturday.”

Baker’s confidence is shared by the Ladbrokes punters, who have supported her on debut as a $5.50 third pick behind Exceeds at $4.60 and the unbeaten Teaspoon at $4.80.

“I really think she is a good filly but I’m breaking a few rules with her on Saturday. It is mainly due to there being no other options with her,” Baker said.

“I think she is going to be competitive across the carnival and a race like the Percy Skyes at The Championship is something we have in mind.”

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Brumbies to blood seven new players against Crusaders

13/05/2019 Posted by admin

Wharenui Hawera (right) will start at flyhalf for the Brumbies. Photo: Jay Cronan Chris Alcock will replace David Pocock as the Brumbies’ No. 7. Photo: Karleen Minney
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ACT Brumbies captain Sam Carter has backed the team’s new faces to handle a Canterbury Crusaders onslaught in a daunting Super Rugby initiation on Saturday.

The Brumbies will throw seven club rookies into a Christchurch cauldron for the first game of the season and an attempt to break a 17-year drought against the Crusaders.

New Zealand-born duo Nic Mayhew and Wharenui Hawera will start at loosehead prop and flyhalf respectively while Chris Alcock, Kyle Godwin, De Wet Roos, Lolo Fakaosilea and Isaac Thompson are also part of the travelling group.

The Brumbies have lost more than 500 Super Rugby caps of experience in the off-season after some star departures, but Carter says a new breed is ready to stand tall.

“We’ll look to our experienced guys and leaders in the team to step up,” Carter said.

“I think we’ve got five or six Wallabies in our starting pack so they need to step up and show the way for the team.

“There’s are a lot of blokes who got experience last year and came through really well. We’re feeling confident in what we do and what we’ve got out on the park.”

Brumbies coach Stephen Larkham will lean on the experience of his Wallabies players as the team targets its first win since 2000 against the Crusaders in New Zealand.

Jordan Smiler will start at No. 8 while former Western Force and NSW Waratahs flanker Alcock has the job of filling the hole left by superstar David Pocock.

But the halves combination of Joe Powell and Hawera has played just a handful of minutes together and have a total tally of 11 games between them. All of those games rest with Powell.

Hawera, 23, joined the Brumbies just two months ago after the club went searching for a new flyhalf when Christian Lealiifano was diagnosed with leukaemia.

“He came just to purely trial with us and we ended up offered him a contract,” Larkham said.

“He played the two trial matches and I thought he played exceptionally well. He found good combination and steered the team around the park really well.

“His skillset is exactly what we need. You expect your [scrumhalf and flyhalf] to be challenged in defence every week, but they’re good defenders.

“We’ve looked a bit of footage [of the Crusaders] and we’re well aware they like to come down that challenge. We’ll be ready for that.”

Injuries ruined Scott Sio and Jarrad Butler’s hopes of playing in the Super Rugby season, but their absence has opened the door for a new breed of Brumbies.

Scrumhalf Tomas Cubelli will miss at least the first four months of the season while winger Lausii Taliauli won’t play a game in 2017 after having a knee reconstruction.

“There were a lot of tough decisions in this first team,” Larkham said.

“Some guys were disappointed, but there is a Brumby Runners game this weekend so they will get some good game time.

“All of the guys know how to play rugby … this is just another game. We feel these guys add to that combination, that’s why we have full confidence in them.

“Maybe a few people will write us off. But internally, we’re going about business as though we’re ready to play.”

Mayhew, who made his Super Rugby debut for the Auckland Blues in 2015, faces a baptism of fire against All Blacks prop Owen Franks.

“Nic’s an excellent scrummager, he’s got great awareness of where he needs to be on the field so his understanding of rugby is good coming out of the New Zealand system,” Larkham said.

“He’s a top-notch scrummager and we pride ourselves on set piece. He fits into the mould of loosehead prop perfectly.”


Saturday: Canterbury Crusaders v ACT Brumbies at Christchurch, 5.30pm. TV time: Live on Fox Sports 1.

Brumbies team: 15. Aidan Toua, 14. Henry Speight, 13. Tevita Kuridrani, 12. Kyle Godwin, 11. James Dargaville, 10. Wharenui Hawera, 9. Joe Powell, 8. Jordan Smiler, 7. Chris Alcock, 6. Scott Fardy. 5. Sam Carter, 4. Rory Arnold, 3. Allan Alaalatoa, 2. Josh Mann-Rea, 1. Scott Sio. Reserves: 16. Robbie Abel, 17. Ben Alexander, 18. Les Leuluaialii-Makin, 19. Tom Staniforth, 20. Lolo Fakaosilea, 21. De Wet Roos, 22. Andrew Smith, 23. Isaac Thompson.

Crusaders team: 1. Joe Moody, 2. Ben Funnell, 3. Owen Franks, 4. Scott Barrett, 5. Sam Whitelock, 6. Jordan Taufua, 7. Matt Todd, 8. Whetu Douglas, 9. Bryn Hall, 10. Richie Mo’unga, 11. George Bridge, 12. Ryan Crotty, 13. Jack Goodhue, 14. Seta Tamanivalu, 15. Israel Dagg. Reserves: 16. Codie Taylor, 17. Wyatt Crockett, 18. Michael Alaalatoa, 19. Luke Romano, 20. Pete Samu, 21. Ereatari Enari, 22. Mitchell Hunt, 23. David Havili (function(d, s, id) { var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0]; if (d.getElementById(id)) return; js = d.createElement(s); = id; js.src = “//connect.facebook苏州夜场招聘/en_US/sdk.js#xfbml=1&version=v2.8”; fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs);}(document, ‘script’, ‘facebook-jssdk’)); Brumbies Rugby 2017

Brumbies Rugby will throw seven new players into a Super Rugby cauldron as they attempt to break a 17-year drought against the BNZ Crusaders on Saturday: http://www.canberratimes苏州夜总会招聘.au/rugby-union/brumbies/act-brumbies-name-team-for-super-rugby-opener-against-canterbury-crusaders-20170223-gujdhp.htmlPosted by The Canberra Times on Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Pope Francis’s commission members say the church is ‘struggling’ on child safety responsibilities

13/05/2019 Posted by admin

Struggling: The Vatican. Two members of Pope Francis’s commission on child protection have told a royal commission hearing that the church is “struggling to come to terms with the safety of children and its responsibilities in that area”. THE Catholic Church is a world organisation“struggling to come to terms with the safety of children and its responsibilities in that area”, two members of Pope Francis’s child protection commission told the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.
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“I think the Pope does understand the seriousness of it and I think there are many other leaders who do, but I think that the organisation, with the leadership that it has, there are some people struggling to come to terms with it,” psychiatrist and Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors member Baroness Sheila Hollins told the royal commission on Thursday.

Read more: Shine the Light –the Newcastle Herald’s complete Royal Commission coverage

Baroness Hollins and papal commission member Bill Killgallon told the royal commission they were under-resourced, under-staffed and had not seen evidence of research-based decision-making in the global church on issues relating to child sexual abuse.

“It seems to me that you’ve had a very systematic, well thought out program and you’ve commissioned research widely into some really important topics,” Mr Killgallon told the royal commission at the 16th, and final, public hearing into the Catholic Church.

“We as a commission can follow that example.”

A recent example of the church making decisions directly related to child sexual abuse involved whether child sex offenders within religious orders should be kept within communities or not, Mr Killgallon said.

“As far as I can see, there’s no evidence base for taking a decision on that. There has been no research that I’m aware of as to whether sending people –detaching them from the community or keeping them in community –whether one works better than the other,” he said.

Commissioner Andrew Murray told Baroness Hollins he was “not yet convinced” of the church’s ability to change the “culture of secrecy and concealment” that led to a global child sexual abuse tragedy.

“Overcoming a culture like that is a massive enterprise,” Mr Murray said.

Baroness Hollins, whose career as a psychiatrist has concentrated on the sexual abuse of adults and children with intellectual disabilities, agreed that to change that kind of church culture was “really, really difficult”.

Papal commission members believed “very strongly” that the church should pay for its work and “we shouldn’t beraising money from outside or from philanthropy, that we should be looking to the church to fund it”.

“But trying to work out what we need to have in place in order to be able to have the influence that we need is quite difficult,” she said.

“We’ve been trying to establish relationships and trying to understand how things are done within what is essentially an Italian kind of organisation.

“When we see the organisation and the competencies involved in the n royal commission, we don’t have that level of support.”

Papal commission member Baroness Sheila Hollins

Royal commission chair Justice Peter McClellan told the papal commission members that “we see the work that you’re doing as a very important part of the church’s response, which of course will assist the church to perhaps come to terms with the recommendations we will make in due course”.

“Insofar as this commission has identified…real change will only occur, as we understand the process, if it’s coming from Rome,” Justice McClellan said.

He asked Baroness Hollins why the papal commission couldn’t “go to the Pope and say ‘We don’t have the resources we need to effectively carry out our work’?”

Baroness Hollins replied: “I think that may well be something that we will be wanting to feed back to him when we complete our review that we’re undergoing at the moment. We’re looking at the future of the commission at our next meeting.”

Racing: Blue Diamond has come a along way since being in shadow of Golden Slipper

13/05/2019 Posted by admin

Ciaron Maher’s Jukebox (front) is a contender in this year’s Blue Diamond. Photo: Vince CaligiuriIn the late 1960s racing powerbrokers and influential breeders decided that Victoria needed a high profile and strong two-year-old race to combat the increasing notoriety of the Golden Slipper Stakes, which was gathering nearly as much momentum as the Melbourne Cup.
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Respected racing executives and breeders could see that without a flagship juvenile race the focus of two-year-old racing would continue to drift into NSW.

After some frank discussions and heavy lobbying, the Blue Diamond Stakes, complete with a sparkling diamond, arrived on Victorian Racing fixtures in 1971.

Like all major races that were newly gazetted, every heavyweight stable in wanted to be part of it.

In 1971 it seemed only appropriate that Victoria’s leading trainer of juveniles, Angus Armanasco, should be successful with his speedy colt, Tolerance.

A year later Tommy Smith brought his outstanding grey two-year-old John’s Hope to Melbourne and he comfortably had the measure of the Victorian two-year-olds, which had some locals gnashing their teeth at the intrusion of interstate stables so early in the Diamond’s history.

In 1973 the race was beginning to gain valuable traction in the media when the Flemington-prepared youngster New Gleam was pitted against arguably one of the fastest two-year-olds to come out of Adelaide, War Talk.

Since War Talk went within one-hundredth of a second of smashing the five furlong Moonee Valley record, War Talk and New Gleam took on the guise of a match race.

And they successfully managed to take oxygen away from the Golden Slipper.

New Gleam gained the upper hand in the closing stages to win the race in 1973. Tragically, War Talk was floated to Randwick and just a week before the Slipper shattered his knee and had to be euthanised.

It’s said that the death of War Talk affected trainer Colin Hayes deeply, as he maintained the youngster was the fastest horse he’d ever had on his Lindsay Park establishment.

In 1975 Bart Cummings captured his first Diamond when Lord Dudley came from well back to win. Twelve months later Hayes opened his Blue Diamond account, and his family would go on to win the group 1 event eight times.

However, in 1985 the publicity machine that now surrounded the race appeared to falter following the Diamond of that year.

A young Ballarat trainer, Robert Smerdon, won the race with his speedy Let’s Get Physical, but the performance of the second placegetter, Acumen, overshadowed the post-race publicity.

The VATC had invited world champion jockey Lester Piggott to and he picked up the plumb ride on the Geoff Murphy-trained Acumen.

Let’s Get Physical went straight to the lead while Acumen went back through the field and ran to the outside rail before balancing up and being narrowly beaten.

Murphy, who was never tolerant of a poor ride in the smallest of races, had to be restrained when making his way to the mounting yard.

“They kept telling me that he’s the f—–g best jockey in the world and he steers it like that,” Murphy yelled as horses returned to the mounting yard.

“How did I ever fall for this bloke. He must have given the leader 20 lengths start and that’s including going via platform three at Caulfield Station.

“He must be joking.”

It was all just part of Blue Diamond history.

Since then the race has still managed to uncover brilliant two-year-olds who went on to reshape the breeding industry of , including Redoute’s Choice and many other youngsters who underpinned the pedigrees of some of ‘s finest families, and it’s share of dramas.

Golden Slipper hope Menari repays George Altomonte’s faith

13/05/2019 Posted by admin

Slipper type: Menari won on debut at Randwick in Janaury. Photo: bradleyphotos苏州夜总会招聘.auWizard of Odds: Live Odds, Form and Alerts for all Racing
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Even before Menari got to Gerald Ryan’s yard, he had big raps on him. So much so that he didn’t even make it to the sales yard.

From the Golden Slipper nursery of Corumbene Stud, the Snitzel colt was supposed to go to the Magic Millions sale last year. With a good page and outstanding conformation, he would have been expected to bring north of $500,000.

“Then two weeks out we got the X-rays and there were a couple of little faults, little issues,” owner George Altomonte said. “It would have been enough of a knock on him for him not to sell well.

“There was nothing we could do about it. We decided that he was such a nice colt we would keep him at the farm.

“He had a big stride and was comparable to Sebring, but I think a better type.

“You don’t want to send a horse like him to the sale and get nothing for him. I didn’t want to do that to the horse, so we decided to keep him.”

It was a big decision not to cash him in but since he arrived on the track at Randwick on Magic Millions day, it has proven a wise decision.

Menari scored a strong win on debut then never got a clear crack in the Canonbury Stakes until inside the final furlong when a fast-closing second to Pariah after going back to last.

He arrives in the Skyline Stakes as favourite and the leading colt in Golden Slipper betting.

“You saw what happened last time, we never got to see the best of him because he was blocked for a run,” trainer Gerald Ryan said. “When he got clear he was very strong.

“He has done well since and I just want him to get a clear run on Saturday to show what he can do.”

Tm Clark will replace Josh Parr in the saddle for the Skyline and Ryan will be hoping the inside draw doesn’t count against Menari again and he can win his way to the Golden Slipper.

If he does, he will only be living up to the opinion Corumbene stud master Toby Frazer had of him.

“I know a couple of blokes at another farm that have got $151 about him in the Slipper after listening to Toby,” Ryan said.

Corumbene has produced a couple of Slipper winners in Sebring and Overreach while Frazer has also been a part of the early development of Marauding and Burst, but he has always been of the opinion that this colt was better than all of them.

“He is at the top of the tree,” Frazer said. “He didn’t have the X-rays to go with it but he just needed time.

“If we had him in [at the] Easter [sales] he might have been OK but he was a great colt to have, an outstanding colt.

“He has just kept improving with everything he did and I would have been disappointed if he didn’t do what he has already done.

“He was just a lovely horse from the time he was on the ground. You get a bit biased when we rear these horses but he has always been special.

“I’m not going on Saturday but I will be there for the Golden Slipper if he is there because that’s where I thought he would be.”

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