Tulloch Lodge Tribunal 1974

Tulloch Lodge Tribunal 1974

Featured Image: Tulloch Lodge 1974 Gratefully acknowledge ‘Backstage of Racing’ by Bert Lillye ISBN 0 909558 86 8 © Copyright 1985 John Fairfax Marketing, The Herald Building, 2nd Floor, 23 Hamilton Street, SYDNEY NSW 2000.

The image includes T J & Valerie Smith, Dave ‘The Dasher’ Segenfield, Phil Spanton, John McSweeney (dark glasses), Tony McSweeney (dark glasses & dark shirt), Ralph Lucas, Ferd Calvin and Mrs Spanton; a veritable ‘Cadre of Colourful Racing Identities’. An ageing colleague attending our regular Wednesday ‘Camarilla of Coffee Cadre’ at a Cafe in Kelly Street remarked with some perspicacity that ‘characters’ were disappearing from our everyday lives and not just from the racetrack?

T J Smith was at the apogee of his dominance of thoroughbred training in Sydney if not Australia in 1974. The AJC’s move to restrict the number of runners a trainer could have in any given race stemmed from favourite ‘Foresight’ being run down by 80-to-1 outsider ‘Bye Bye’, one of TJ’s five runners, in the 1969 Doncaster.  ‘Foresight’ was backed for a motzer at odds between 16/1 and 20/1 and in doubles with ‘Lowland’ (Sydney Cup) and ‘Rain Lover’ by a trusted commission agent weeks in advance of the race for a leviathan AJC Committeeman. Was it time for ‘payback’?

It’s intriguing to speculate how this proposed rule if applicable today would affect race fields. It’s not unusual for Chris Waller to accept with most runners in many Sydney Metropolitan Races, especially those over middle distances and restricted class staying races.

Kobayashi Quinella in Pat O’Shea Plate

See: https://www.breednet.com.au/news/24033/kobayashi-quinella-in-pat-o’shea-plate-

Mark Smith – Toowoomba, Saturday 23 September 2023

Trainer Less Ross and owner Mike Cooks’ Mishani Enterprises had six of the nine starters for the first 2-year-old race of the season, Saturday’s Pat O’Shea 2yo Plate (1000m) at Toowoomba, and duly supplied the trifecta.

The outsider of the sextet, ‘Mishani Rock’, handed the hammer blow to punters.

Ridden by Les Tilley, the son of Kobayashi was strong to the line in defeating the Kobayashi filly ‘Mishani Ego’ by one and a half lengths, with The Mission filly ‘Mishani Fire’ back in third.

“It was a pleasant surprise. I was hoping one of the fillies would win, but it’s nice to have a winner,” Ross said.

Of those gathered at Tulloch Lodge in 1974 a small few were subsequently ‘warned off’ for a variety of real or perceived misdemeanours ‘incompatible with the rules of racing’. Afficionados of the sport will recognise who they were?

Scone Race Club – First in Photo Finish

Scone Race Club – First in Photo Finish


John A. Smith

14 Baringa Street

WARANA Q. 4575

Phone: (074) 93-2593

See also: https://sconevetdynasty.com.au/scone-race-club-cup-1976/ 

(Scone can possibly lay claim to being the first country race club in Australia to record photo finishes in its turf events. The featured image shows how far we progressed in almost 30 years?)

Just prior to 1947 a Sydney importer, Mr J Farren Price who ran a watch and clock business, brought out a camera from Switzerland which showed promise of removing any doubt about close finishes on racecourses.

The camera was a Bolex Palliard 16mm movie outfit into which was built a stopwatch and prism lenses which projected the face of the watch showing the time on each frame of film as horses were pictured when they finished past the winning post.

It was necessary for the camera’s operator to be in a position in the judge’s box to see the starter lower his flag and send the field on its way. As the flag was dropped the camera clock was activated by the operator who then waited until the field came into view in the straight. As the leading horses headed for the winning post about 50 yards away the camera film was set in motion with the lens fixed on the winning post until the last horse had gone past.

When the film was developed a negative was produced on which 60 frames of pictures per second were exposed. Actually, the finish of the race was recorded in slow motion with the time taken showing on each frame. By this method the time of every horse showed up as it passed the post.

It was intended that the film be processed quickly and dried. Each individual picture frame could be examined under a magnifying glass and. If the finish was extremely close an enlargement could be blown p to show which horse was the winner; or, as could happen, a dead heat may have resulted.

The camera was shown to me by Mr Doug Robertson, then President of the Scone Race Club and I was asked if the outfit could be adapted for trial use at the first meeting to be held on White Park Course in 1947.

As there were no darkroom facilities built onto the judge’s box whereby film could be processed it would have been necessary for me to leave the course and hurry off to a darkroom at “The Advocate”; a trip that would have taken too long to process the film and again return to the course with the photo-finish negatives.

I constructed a small darkroom outfit using a standard sized kerosene case which made it light-proof and contained a shelf in the centre on which to place the camera prior to removing the exposed film. The front was made light-proof with heavy canvas, with two canvas sleeves elastic at the elbows allowing the hands to to enter the darkened box. On the bottom was plastic container for developer and a second one for fixing solution. The box outfit was placed on a chair beneath the judges’ box together with a bucket of clean water for washing the film.

Everything went well for the first race. The clock was set in motion when the starter dropped the flag. The film began its run when the leaders were in close proximity to the winning post. There were no problems unloading the exposed film from the camera inside the portable dark-box and the short length of film was processed in around six minutes before being removed and given a quick film rinse in a bucket of water. The entire operation, from go-to-whoa before the film was in the judge’s hands was around 10 minutes.

On the day there were no close finishes and no necessity for a negative frame to decide the winner. However, it was an interesting exercise as it revealed the fact that for a camera system to be effective by producing a negative and print within a reasonably short time a properly equipped dark room complete with developing and enlarging facilities would be absolutely necessary. To make a black and white enlargement from a finish off a 16mm single frame negative would take all of 15 minutes at the least, a delay which was not considered reasonable before the winner and placegetters’ numbers could be hoisted. Also, to construct a proper darkroom with equipment would have been too costly.

The camera was handed back to Mr. Robertson at the end of the day, and I did not hear of any country race club embodying this form of obtaining photo finish results after the experience gained at the Scone meeting.

John A. Smith

Former photographer for the “Scone Advocate” until 1956


(Transcribed from the original hand typed letter 17/09/2023 by WPH)



Just when it seemed Racing NSW had reached its apogee with the $20 million Everest Peter V’Landys has come up with another golden chalice.

See: Equimillion

See: Equimillion Launched – $1m Equestrian Event For Retired Thoroughbred Racehorses – Racing New South Wales (racingnsw.com.au)

Racing NSW welcomes you to support retired NSW Thoroughbred racehorses you were connected to, during their racing careers, in the inaugural Equimillion Equestrian Competition.

Equimillion will showcase the versatility and suitability of Thoroughbreds for careers outside of racing, with the event to be held on the October long weekend in 2023 at Sydney International Equestrian Centre.

Equimillion is an equestrian event with a minimum $1 million in prizemoney exclusively for retired NSW Thoroughbred racehorses across disciplines of Eventing, Jumping, Dressage and Show horse. Each discipline will include classes for junior, amateur, and open professional competitors with a total prizemoney of $30,000 per class and prizemoney paid down to 5th place in each class.

How to be a part of the journey?
Reach out to the new carers of your rehomed horses and sponsor them into Equimillion. All eligible horses will compete across the 3-day Equimillion festival of the Thoroughbred competition.

Event entries close on Sunday 10th September. 

What horses are eligible to compete in Equimillion?

*All named horses bred in NSW are eligible to compete*

Named horses bred interstate:
Horse must have been trained, trialled, or raced in NSW
Named horses bred internationally:
Horse must have been trained, trialled, or raced in NSW
Unnamed Horses:
Bred in NSW with the intent to race in NSW.



Police stepped in after Carey family targeted with vile abuse.

Police stepped in after Carey family targeted with vile abuse.

See: Subscribe to The Australian | Newspaper home delivery, website, iPad, iPhone & Android apps

Alex Carey has opened up on the infamous Jonny Bairstow Ashes incident, and the shocking abuse directed at his family which forced the Australian star to delete his Instagram account.

I’ve previously waxed lyrical myself about the execrable and egregious otiose ordure liberally ladled out by the captious cavilling of the cowardly carping curs.

See: https://sconevetdynasty.com.au/the-sewer-of-social-media/

See also: https://sconevetdynasty.com.au/cockroaches-emerge-from-the-dark/

Perhaps I should acknowledge my ‘vicarious guilt’ on the cricket pitch. I played School Cricket (Ackworth, Yorkshire) and University College Cricket (Edinburgh University). I was a wicket keeper. If I saw the opportunity I did exactly what Alex Carey did at Lords. There was much less at stake. Johnny Bairstow should have known better. He was raised on the playing fields of cricket-mad Yorkshire County as was his late father, David. It was firmly inculcated into the psyche to never give an inch. The late Wally Grout put it more succinctly: “Never give a sucker an even break”. As an ex-POM I was much more affronted by the appalling reprehensible behaviour of the Members at Lords.

PS 2005 Australian of the Year Dr Fiona Wood is an alumnus of my old school. A relative of Harold ‘Dickie’ Bird was in my class. Geoff Boycott attended a local Grammar School. He was very good indeed.