QT trot columnist and harness racer Denis Smith.
QT trot columnist and harness racer Denis Smith. David Nielsen

Highly successful Noel a fine gentleman

SOMETIMES you just wish that the "grim reaper" would take an extended holiday.

This week we record the passing of Noel Hay, taken by illness in his 85th year.

Noel first saw the light of day at Kingaroy on May 16, 1934.

He was reared on the home farm at Goodya, where he developed a love for the horses which was to last all his life.

In the early days, the lightly framed lad tried his hand at the thoroughbreds in Brisbane, but the usual bugbear of wasting saw an end to that.

He did however touch base with the pacers, riding at the EKKA for his grandfather George Woodall.

The love affair was rekindled when Noel bought what is now the home farm in 1973 at Kumbia, in the shadow of the Bunya mountains.

Sometime in the first 12 months, a pacer was purchased from Doug Coy.

It was Sandy Smith, a son of Sandy Scott NZ and the mare, Teen Scott.

It was the start of a dual-pronged enterprise, not only the training and the sharing of the driving with his son Colin, but the breeding.

In the many years from 1973 to his last starters in the 2016/17 season, all but a handful were home-breds, reared and developed on the acres at Kumbia.

Was he successful? He certainly was.

From 2247 starters came 172 winners and 468 placegetters, earning in all $457,761.

Noel was of the opinion that Iguana, a son of the talented but injury dogged Goanna, was the best horse that he trained.

Standing up alongside Iguana are Bunya Blaze, 80 starts for 13 wins and 21 placings, picking up $63,809 in the process.

There's also Stormin Normin, 202 trips for 19 wins and 46 placings and $59,702.

Both were by the flying machine Wondai's Mate.

No one close the sport could forget Noel Hay and his float with the mural of of the Bunyas for all to see.

He was simply one of nature's gentlemen.

Next Saturday we will cover the life of John McMullen Snr, also known as "Hollywood John". He was one of the greatest names in the night trotting era in Queensland.

Lacey's top form

SOMETIMES an omission can lead to a positive result.

So it happened when I inadvertently failed to note that, along with six other trainers, Lacey Hinze had managed two winners in the previous week.

This meant that the prizemoney spread for the period was even wider than usual and even more cause for joy in the Ipswich footprint.

In the course of mending this particular fence, we were able to find that 31-year-old Lacey is steaming along happily in an independent yet co-operative training arrangement with partner Ricky Gordon at Haigslea.

They help each other a great deal while respecting each other's contribution as individuals.

At the same time, Lacey is receiving solid support from satisfied owner Doug Manger, who is providing horses which can do the job.

Lacey enjoys the style of racing at the Marburg venue and particularly the input of race caller Dean Jones, who realises that horses have trainers, and never fails to give them the wraps that they deserve.

Lacey Hinze commenced training in the 2011/12 season and success did not come easy.

Now with career stats of 489 starters for 21 winners, 80 placings and a bank of $103,092, she is looking at at a new season just three weeks old and is already up there with two winners from three runners.

This might be the start of something big.

Day to enjoy

ON the Queens Birthday (Monday, October 1), take advantage of the public holiday to get out to Marburg, enjoy the racing and the off-track entertainment while helping to support drought stricken farmers through the CWA appeal.

Details next Saturday.

Handy tips

SELECTIONS for Albion Park tonight.

R1: E/w 5: Mafuta Vautin (D Graham).

R2: E/w 5: Ruffalo (D Graham).

R3: Quinella 2-8: El Major (M A Dux) and Outlaw Fella (G Dixon).

R4: Quinella 3-7: Under The Kilt (N Dawson) and Buddy Babcock (N Chalk).

R5: Quinella 2-6: Bohdi Tree (L Cain) and Watch Pulp Fiction (H Barnes).

R6: E/w 2: Mucho Macho Man (L Cain).

R7: Quinella 5-10: My Ultimate Fella (N Dawson) and Beau Cishlom (D McMullen).

R8: Quinella 5-7: Pompidou (L Cain) and The Ides Of March ( N Dawson).

R9: Box trifecta 1-5-6: Zed Code (K Rasmussen)-Caesars Astrum (P McMullen)-The Next Star (B Graham).

R10: Box trifecta 1-3-4: Iownaturbo (B Barnes)-January (K Rasmussen)-Mandy Kriden (L Cain).

Honour board

Another swing of the pendulum as Darrell Graham returned to the position of leading trainer with three winners for the week. Nathan Dawson was in full flight, posting seven winners in the sulky for the same period. Rating: 350. Most pleasing was Bronze Ecstasy for Jack Rees.

Albion Park, September 14: Bronze Ecstasy (Jack Rees for Mark Rees); Its Megs (Nathan Dawson for Daren Garrard); Franco Totem (Adam Sanderson for Darrell Graham).

Albion Park, September 15: Bells Beach House (Pete McMullen for Chantal Turpin); The Ides Of March (Nathan Dawson for Donny Smith); Tact Ollie (Adam Sanderson for Darrell Graham); Motu Real Style (Danielle McMullen for Ryan Veivers); Withalotofluck (Danielle McMullen for Steve Cini); Releven Dream (Pete McMullen for Wayne Graham).

Albion Park, September 18: The Money Ball Narissa McMullen for Steve Cini).

Redcliffe, September 19: Goodtime Stride (Nathan Dawson for Anthony Gorman); Wave Dancer (Hayden Barnes for Josh Moore); Contrary Courage (Nathan Dawson for Merv Hieronymus); Lynnsanity (Brittany Graham for Darrell Graham).

Redcliffe, September 20: Kay Jays Terror (Pete McMullen for Murray Thomas); Im Rolling Stoned (Pete McMullen for Richard Hutchinson); Ykikafil (Nathan Dawson for Richard March); Im Toot (Nathan Dawson for Dale Belford); Precious Cullen (Nathan Dawson for Graham White); Hot Dogma (Matt Elkins for Ross Fletcher).