2015 Mollymook Cup

The Radio 2ST2015 Mollymook Cup was run and won on Sunday.
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A large crowd descended on Shoalhaven City Turf Club for the annual event, which saw iconicSouth Coast trainer Bede Murray take out the feature event of the day.

2015 Mollymook Cup Renee Menzies, Tony Cottam and Joanne Menzies.

Toby, Layla and Jodie Madge.

(Back) Jill Hart and Rod Wells. (Front) Gabrielle Heanes, Pam Heanes, Lorna Duncombe and James Welsh.

Greg Houghton, Amy Houghton and Jaimie McLean.

Jan Berthon and Anne Wicks.

Mikaela Irwin, Emily Quinn, Caterina Loccisano and Charms Baltis.

John McGuire, Rachel McGuire, Beck Crees and Chris Dell.

Rodney and Andrea Tucker.

(Back) Gary McVey and Shane McVey. (Front) Beverley Clee, Narelle Beauchamp and Bernadette Murphy.

Theresa Ng and Dianne Maguire.

Bev Mcvey, Debbie Hayden and Sarah Hopkins.

Craig Noble, Abbey Noble, Marissa Newman and Jay Martin.

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Pioneers name rookie squad

MANY pockets in the Bendigo Pioneers Football Club’s region are represented in a new rookie squadahead of the 2016 AFL Victoria TAC Cup under-18s season.
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Clubs featured in the rookie squad of 40 include Boort, Kyabram, Pyramid Hill, Colbinabbin,Tyntynder, Woorinen, Woomelang, Mildura Imperials, and Nyah.Rising stars from Sandhurst, Strathfieldsaye, Eaglehawk, South Bendigo and Golden Square were alsochosen.

Sandhurst’s Billy Robertson.

Bendigo Pioneers coach Brett Henderson said the rookie squad was aimed at fast-trackingdevelopment and providing more opportunities for players.

“Some of the players in the rookie squad could be added to the main list before the season starts, orduring the season.There are a lot of factors to consider.”

Henderson also urged those who missed out on selection to not give up.

“Our recruiting team and network spotters will be at a lot of matches.

“Their feedback will be important, not just for the lead-up to next season but for seasons to follow.”

Satellite training squads will continue in Swan Hill, Mildura and the North Central region.

The rookie squad will train with the main under-18s squad across pre-season and during the season.

“We believe we have a great mix of talent,” Henderson said of the main list and rookie list.

“Versatility and adapting to change will be crucial.It’s not just about being able to play one position, but the ability to adapt to two, three or maybemore roles.”

Pre-season training starts on November 13 at Epsom-Huntly Reserve.

Bendigo Pioneers rookie list:Connor Soraggi, Balranald.Nathan Twigg, Boort.Will Lowe, Colbinabbin.Sam Dean, Koby Hommelhoff, Joel Mullen, Eaglehawk.Tyler Phillips, Echuca.Brock Harvey, Jordan Rosengren, Golden Square.Mitchell Booth, Josh Nitschke, Kerang.Luke Darling, Ben McDonnell, Curt Ryan, Dom Watt, Kyabram.

Brady Hore, Leitchville-Gunbower.Toby Sims, Macedon.Brady Fordham, Mallee Eagles.Riley Burns, Mildura.Tyson Whitford, Mildura Imperials.Mitchell Eade, Clay McGregor, Sam McHale, Jeremy Paine, Clay Poidevan, Jack Russell, Moama.Jayden Bourchard, Nyah.Steven Gunther, Pyramid Hill.Bailey Wileman, Rochester.

Jack Bouwmeester, Darby Graham, Connor Hamilton, Billy Robertson, Seb Spijkerman Sandhurst.Will Keck, South Bendigo.Harley Durward, St Arnaud.David Simpson, Strathfieldsaye.Patrick Crowe, Tyntynder. Wade Donnan, Woomelang.Jose Miliado, Woorinen.

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Steel beat Mosman to reach T20 semi-finals

IF the opening two campaigns from the Newcastle Steel in the Sydney grade cricket Twenty20 Cup were about earning respect, then the goal for season three was semi-final qualification.
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The Steel achieved that aim on Sunday with an impressive seven-wicket win over Mosman at Allan Border Oval with three balls to spare.

Another free-wheeling display by Toronto’s Joe Price (80 off 61 balls) provided the backbone of Newcastle’s 3-161 in reply to Mosman’s 5-160.

Victory never appeared in doubt when Price and his Toronto clubmate Greg Hunt (45 off 39 balls) blasted a 133-run opening partnership in 16 overs.

It followed Price’s match-winning 93 last week against Illawarra at Waratah Oval.

‘‘Joe batted outstanding,’’ Steel captain Mark Littlewood said. ‘‘We spoke about putting a price on our wicket and not throwing it away and taking some ownership, and he’s done that twice now.

‘‘Greg Hunt also did a great job at the other end and hit the ball nicely.’’

The Steel’s three wins from four games left them in fourth place in the Sydney Sixers conference, and they will face the undefeated Randwick-Petersham, who beat Newcastle by 62 runs last week, on Sunday in the semi-final.

Littlewood said his Newcastle teammates always had belief they belonged in Sydney grade cricket.

‘‘Most of the guys have played down there, but this year having Mitch Claydon back and Danny McLauchlan with the ball as well with Grant Stewart, the bowling attack is stronger than it was,’’ he said.

Only Mosman opener Scott Rodgie (77 not out off 47 balls) caused any headaches for the Steel.


Gang-gang: Thea Katauskas’ paintings celebrate homes of a previous Canberra

Deceased, since demolished bungalow of Campbell, by Thea Katauskas. Photo: Thea Katauskas The late, demolished house at Faunce Crescent, by Thea Katauskas. Photo: Thea Katauskas
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Yes, the new exhibition of paintings by Thea Katauskas​ is going to be full of bright, sunny colours, but the 21 portraits of distinctively Canberraesque homes will figuratively have a little dark cloud dangling above it.

That’s because the houses she chooses to portray, with their olde Canberra uniqueness, are now very vulnerable to demolition and to replacement with modern homes in a  more mansionesque mode. She knows of at least two houses portrayed in her 2014 show Lawnscapes – Portraits of Canberran Houses, (much raved about in this column and very popular with Canberrans, with all 30 of the portraits being snapped up) that have since disappeared. In their place she now sees “brand new, large, modern architectural residences” that alter the scapes of the streets they stand in.

After the heritage tug-of-love-and-hate over the Northbourne Flats, one wonders why the sad menace to and loss of characterful old Canberra homes is not exciting those who love this city.

One of the lost, deceased houses of Lawnscapes, (poignantly pictured here on our page) once graced Faunce Crescent, in O’Connor.

And of the houses portrayed in her looming new exhibition Red Brick – Glimpses of Perfect Suburbia, she knows of at least one that has been demolished since it sat for its portrait. It is (pictured here) the house captured in her Rebuild, Campbell.

She knows of at least one other portrayed in the new exhibition, a house nestling in Turner, that today is sporting an ominous For Sale notice. She finds this ominous because the modest little residence is, like so many of her cottage subjects, in a highly desirable inner-Canberra bailiwick where dashing buyers/developers are bound to want to install something more contemporary and swaggering.

The artist tells us that it never occurred to her at the time she was painting all the many homes eventually displayed in Lawnscapes that she was painting modernity-menaced homes whose days might be numbered. That realisation has since set in. She says it “makes the whole process [of painting these portraits while the houses are still with us] a little bit urgent”.

That “process”, as she’s explained to us, is to paint houses that strike her as particularly Canberran.

She arrived back in Canberra in our centenary year (2013) after 17 years elsewhere and found, she says, everyone celebrating Canberra and looking at what makes Canberra Canberran. She wanted, as an artist, to join in celebrating the city’s uniqueness.

And so she decided to paint houses that struck her as being uniquely Canberran (and bathed in Canberra’s pure, clear light), because they reflected the Griffin idea of houses on large blocks, with lots of space and with an older style of architecture.

Living in inner-North Canberra, she was especially taken by old houses of Lyneham, O’Connor, Turner, Braddon and Ainslie, spotted on her travels by horseless carriage and bicycle.

This columnist was given, in 2014, a sneak preview of the exhibition on the day that the artist was arranging the exquisite little paintings (the Red Brick paintings are chunkier) on gallery walls. Seen all together the 30 made a very touching, Canberran impression. One thing that leapt out then (as it will from Red Brick and as it does from this column’s two portraits) was the picture-perfect orderliness of the homes and inhibited, disciplined gardens. No house had an unkempt, bush-like native garden. They weren’t invented until the1970s, long after the homes and gardens she’s portrayed had been set in their quaint, immaculate old ways.

These premises all have for her “an aesthetic of neatness”.

She sees very controlled and ordered gardens that exemplify the idea of Canberra as a clean and planned city, a perfect city with everything in its place. The houses resonate with that idea of ordered space and controlled nature.

In the Lawnscapes paintings and now in the Red Brick series there is an eerie (but realistic) absence of people. No one is ever at home. In the whole of the Lawnscapes series there were few signs other than the immaculateness that the homes were even inhabited. We liked this about Lawnscapes and like it about Red Brick. Intended or not it gives the deceptively simple-looking paintings an air of shy menace, like the scarily immaculate neighbourhoods in the feature film Edward Scissorhands. In Lawnscapes, one driveway was furnished with a wheelie bin but other than that the houses might have been in suburbs from which all people had just been abducted by aliens.

This absence of people from her paintings is deliberate. For her, after living in teeming places, Canberra feels emptyish and spacious and the suburbs can have an unpeopled nature.

She admires the houses and gardens she is portraying. When I asked her, of Lawnscapes, if she was making fun of these houses she was startled by the very idea. She was quick to say that, no, her paintings are “celebrating” them. She feels she is making snapshots of houses and gardens that are evidence of an older, previous Canberra. She’s full of admiration for the householders, for the pride they’ve taken and the efforts they’ve made to present the public face of their houses to the street.

Red Brick – Glimpses of Perfect Suburbia will open on Thursday, October 29 at M16 Artspace in Griffith, ACT.

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Fairfax-Ipsos poll: Malcolm Turnbull’s stunning ascendancy to fuel early election talk

Much more than anything else, Malcolm Turnbull’s honeymoon is being driven by a sense of relief that Tony Abbott is no longer in charge. Photo: Andrew MearesMr 68 per cent: Turnbull’s stunning poll resultComment: poll success risks messiah complexThe numbers behind why voters love Malcolm
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If Coalition strategists had any doubt about the case for Malcolm Turnbull considering an early election, the first Fairfax-Ipsos national poll since his ascension will comprehensively erase it.

The Turnbull ascendancy over Bill Shorten is everywhere: in the jump in the Coalition primary and two-party vote; in his approval rating; in who is the preferred prime minister; and in how voters rank the leaders on 10 positive attributes.

“Put it all together and I think he has every reason to go early,” says Jessica Elwood, the Ipsos social research director. “There are so many other considerations at play, but this data absolutely suggests it would be a pretty convincing win were he to go early.”

But here’s the thing. Turnbull’s lead over Shorten is almost identical to the Turnbull ascendancy over Tony Abbott, as measured by the former prime minister’s ratings before he was torn down.

This suggests that, much more than anything else, the Turnbull honeymoon is being driven by a sense of relief that Abbott is no longer in charge.

Turnbull’s every instinct will be turn that sense of relief into a positive endorsement between now and when the election is due in around 12 months, but the case for going before the May budget with a new plan is surely being considered by those around him.

Aside from sending a collective shiver down the Labor spine, the poll results represent a blunt message to those hardline conservatives in the Coalition who would contemplate making life difficult for the new leader: Don’t even think about it!

There is also a verdict on the Labor tactic last week of trying to exploit Turnbull’s great wealth: It backfired. This does not mean the Opposition will desist.

Endorsements of a leadership change between elections, or of the first few weeks of a new prime minister’s performance, simply do not get any better than this one.

The Coalition’s poor performance in the polls was one of the key reasons Turnbull gave when he announced that he would challenge. Now, for the first time since before the disastrous 2014 budget, the Coalition is not just in front, but ascendant in every area.

Kevin Rudd and Bob Hawke had similarly high approval ratings after coming to power at general elections, but Turnbull’s arrival was the result of tearing down the man who led the Coalition to victory at the last election. His 68 per cent approval rating is higher than John Howard’s first rating (61) and much higher than Julia Gillard’s when she knocked off Rudd (54) and Rudd’s when he knocked off Gillard (51).

Most significantly, it is 21 points higher than Abbott’s first rating (47) and his net rating of plus-51 is a staggering 75 points better than Bill Shorten’s net rating of minus-24 (which is the same as Abbott’s rating in the last poll before he was dumped).

Turnbull’s challenge is to turn the perceptions of voters into reality and voter rankings on 10 positive attributes suggest where he needs to concentrate his energy. He leads Shorten by an average of 27 points in every category, but has only a single-digit lead in the areas of social policy and on commanding the confidence of his party.

Moreover, his trustworthiness rating is just 58 per cent (still well ahead of Shorten’s 36), which probably reflects the electorate’s view of how he came to power.

But Shorten’s challenge is so much greater: to change voter perceptions and give his colleagues reason to hang tough during what could be a very long Turnbull honeymoon.


Watchdog brass to mull over Ten-Foxtel deal

The ACCC will deliver a decision on Thursday. Photo: Louise KennerleyThe competition watchdog’s four-strong mergers committee will convene early this week to either block, approve, or defer a decision upon, Foxtel’s controversial bid to buy 14.9 per cent of struggling free-to-air television network Ten Network Holdings.
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The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission is due to hand down its findings on Thursday although it is possible that it will delay a final decision until further review.

The outcome will have major implications for the Australian media landscape as News Corp and its pay television joint venture Foxtel strive to get a toehold in the $4 billion free-to-air television market.

The ACCC is also examining the merger of Ten’s advertising sales division with Multi-Channel Network.

“Obviously, until we get together we don’t know what decision we’re going to make,” ACCC chairman Rod Sims told Fairfax Media.

“We have a separation between the staff who are doing all the work and the four decision making commissioners. We’ve had a number of meetings with all the parties who are in favour of, or against, the transaction.”

The ACCC raised sports rights, advertising and a separate 8.5 per cent stake in Ten held by News Corp co-chairman Lachlan Murdoch through his private investment vehicle Illyria among the issues it was considering in its statement of issues, which was published September 14.

Opponents of the deal, including Fairfax Media, publisher of The Australian Financial Review, have argued that a tie-up would give Foxtel, which is 50 per cent owned by News Corporation, too much power over the Ten, the home of The Biggest Loser and Shark Tank, sports rights and television advertising.Regulate rather than knock back

In its statement of issues, the ACCC said Foxtel could be more likely to make joint bids for sports rights with Ten, potentially squeezing out Ten’s larger rivals Nine Entertainment Co and Seven West Media.

Others have argued that if the ACCC is concerned about competition for sports rights it should regulate those rather than knock back the Foxtel-Ten deal, and that the most recent blockbuster sports broadcast deals for the National Rugby League and Australia Football League both been tied up with Ten’s rival’s Nine and Seven prove that the transaction would not be detrimental to negotiations.

The proposed deal includes Ten merging its ad sales division with the Foxtel and Fox Sports joint venture Multi-Channel Network, with Ten taking a 24.99 per cent holding. The ACCC is in considering the affect on the advertising market.

Ten is understood to have warned the ACCC that it risks hindering competition across the television industry if it does not approve the transaction, with leading media buyers saying it will be good for the sector.

The Australian Communications and Media Authority, which is currently examining the Foxtel-Ten deal to see whether it would breach to two-out-of-three rule preventing media companies from owning a TV station, radio network and newspaper in the same market, is likely to clear the deal finding that Lachlan Murdoch will not control the metropolitan broadcaster as a result of the tie-up.

Competition experts have suggested that Ten and Foxtel may need to agree to court enforceable undertakings pledging to not engage in certain activities that the competition watchdog may be concerned about.

An enforceable undertaking is essentially a voluntary undertaking which, if breached, can be enforced by the ACCC in court.


Media buyers look for local TV on all devices

Family Feud is one format media buyers say has worked for Ten. Photo: SuppliedLeading media buyers are looking for strong local television programming, and a focus on viewing over television, mobile and online, heading into the free-to-air broadcasters’ annual “upfronts”, where the networks will showcase their plans to agencies and advertisers for the coming year.
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Seven West Media will kick off the upfronts season this Wednesday with what it has labelled its “new fronts”. Rather than running a major one-off event the metropolitan broadcaster will take small groups of media buyers and clients through its plans for 2016 in smaller sessions over a number of days.

“Reports at this stage point to more of a business focus, rather than relying predominantly on programming updates for the content,” Carat chief executive Simon Ryan said.

Mr Ryan expects to see the conversation turn from traditional TV to premium video content across all platforms, as Seven begins streaming its TV channels in December.

Traditional TV broadcasters such as Seven, Nine and Ten, faced increasing competition for audiences from global digital video players like Netflix and YouTube. The networks will use the upfronts as an opportunity to show media agencies and advertisers how they’re responding by evolving their offerings.

“The play of the online media operators and land grab of high-profile content means the networks’ upfronts really need to focus on exclusive entertainment, live and exclusive sport, must-watch local and international programs and be disruptive to their traditional business models,” Mr Ryan said.

He said he expected Seven to focus on their inhouse productions, including a mini-series on Australian music icon Molly Meldrum, how it is selling the formats overseas, and the broadcaster’s Rio de Janeiro summer Olympics coverage, where it will broadcast every event through either its digital TV channels or online.

OMD chief executive Peter Horgan said he would like to see ongoing investment in local content across the networks. “The viewability question rages in the digital space. With the ongoing advent of ad skipping, it’s about how the networks can drive appointment TV beyond sporting franchises and the news.

“Some of the bigger event franchises that they’ve been able to produce locally [are] certainly helping to arrest that audience drift.” Event format successful

Starcom MediaVest chief executive Chris Nolan agreed that the large “event”-format television has been successful for broadcasters and he would be looking to see what new formats are coming up, whether reimagining existing formats or trialling new ones.

“To some degree, we’ll be looking to see if there’s anything new beyond another restaurant, beyond another renovation show. We’ll be looking to see if there’s any new and interesting formats that can bring advertisers and audiences back to the networks,” Mr Nolan said.

Nine will host its upfronts from late October to November, electing to take each media agency through individually with senior executives from the network so that presentations can be more tailored to clients.

Nine is tipped to highlight a close relationship between the network, its digital businesses Mi9 and subscription video on-demand service Stan, which is 50 per cent owned by Fairfax Media, publisher of The Australian Financial Review.

Nine’s Farmer Wants a Wife will air late in 2015, while Australia’s Got Talent is tipped for a revival and Married at First Sight is expected to return.

Mr Nolan said that Ten, which is holding its upfronts as one big event on November 19, has improved greatly this year and believes the network, home to The Biggest Loser and Masterchef, can build on its success in 2016.

“Channel Ten’s reinvention of Family Feud has been very successful for them in terms of selling the timeslot; it’s a cost-effective timeslot relative to its audience,” Mr Nolan said.

“Audiences are fickle, so you need to continue to bring them entertaining formats, and if Ten can continue their history of innovation with format such as Spelling Bee, Family Feud and Shark Tank then yes, it stands to reason that their improvement will continue.”

Carat’s Mr Ryan said Ten’s upfronts will be more focused on coming shows, with the business and sales left to Multi-Channel Network, which recently merged with the broadcaster’s ad sales team.

Individual groups will be taken through the MCN House in Sydney’s eastern suburbs, beginning in early November and continuing the rest of the month, as it shows off its advances in programmatic advertising – the automatic buying of online advertising using algorithms, as well is its technology and data capabilities.

“I suspect that we will start to see some of the fruits of the alliance with Foxtel emerge with cross-channel content being announced, ACCC decision pending obviously,” Mr Ryan said. “What those properties are likely to be as yet is unclear.”


Spotify says artist protests are shrinking as more money rolls in


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The world’s largest music-streaming service, Spotify, has claimed that the number of artists protesting at its royalty rates is shrinking rapidly because acts are beginning to generate meaningful income from the rapidly growing streaming phenomenon.

In an interview with Fairfax Media, Spotify’s chief revenue officer Jeff Levick also said Spotify is making its free, advertising-funded service available on more platforms in a push to attract greater numbers of listeners.

Taylor Swift is the most high-profile pop star to have boycotted Spotify by pulling her music from the service that has changed the way many people consume music, by making vast libraries available for a low monthly – fee or free with advertising.

Mr Levick launched a robust defence of the Swedish company’s payment policies, saying the company has been good for the industry that has been ravaged by piracy.

“We’ve paid back billions of dollars into the music industry,” he said. “In our view, this is a revenue line that was decreasing, not increasing. We feel very strongly about what we’re doing.

“The fact is, the music that we offer on Spotify is fully licensed from the labels; every stream generates a royalty flow back to the labels – even on the free platform.

“I think that, like anything that’s new, there’s a lot of education and a lot of misunderstanding of the new way to do things. I think what you’ll find is the list of those who aren’t on board is greatly decreasing and the list of supporters is greatly increasing.” Rights holders get 70pc

Spotify said 70 per cent of every cent it makes is redistributed to rights holders. However, rights holders can vary from labels to publishers to the artist directly.

At last count, Spotify had 20 million paying subscribers, who collectively contributed the vast majority of its $US1.3 billion ($1.8 million) revenues in 2014.

Spotify has many more customers using its free version, which is funded by advertising and generates far less revenue.

The ad-free service has not been available on all of the platforms Spotify is on but the company has now launched a free version on the PlayStation and Google Chromecast.

Mr Levick said the move would allow advertisers to target niche markets, such as the gaming community.

“Instead of working with other companies and trying to create models of audiences they think might be gamers, by being able to directly target PlayStation users, we know they’re actual gamers in the actual gaming environment,” Mr Levick told Fairfax Media. Healthy revenue stream

“For us, the goal is to be able to have a healthy revenue stream of both free and paid [services]. On the paid side, the average revenue coming from each user is significantly higher than it would be on free because of the monthly subscription.

“That said, advertising is very important to us; on the free service, while it’s free to consumers, there is a cost to Spotify, a royalty is generated every time someone listens to a song and our strategy to help pay for that is it being subsidised by advertising.”

Mr Levick said Spotify was always seeking more devices on which to offer its services.

Spotify, which launched in 2008, reported losses of $US197 million in 2014. Mr Levick said the business was still “heavily focused on investment mode.

“We’re not burning money; we’re trying to be very smart about how we spend it. The places we’re spending it are really focused on growth,” Mr Levick said.

“We think right now is probably one of the most exciting times of growth in streaming. We think it’s really important for us to accelerate our growth and accelerate our efforts around the world.” Significant proportion of earnings

Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA) chief executive Dan Rosen said streaming services such as Spotify, Apple Music and Pandora generate a significant proportion of most artists’ earnings.

“My starting proposition is always that artists get more off streaming services than they do off piracy. I think as these services grow in popularity, then the pool of money grows and more people sign up to the paid model of streaming services, then the pool that can go back to the artist and labels grows,” Mr Rosen said.

“It is a different way of getting your money – under the download model, it’s one lump sum, [whereas with] streaming, there are smaller payments over a longer period of time. The hope is that the money grows [with both the increased] time your song is available and the number of people signing up to streaming services.”

Mr Levick would not comment on a much-rumoured listing of Spotify.

“We haven’t commented on IPO [initial public offering] or timings of the like. We continue to grow, we’ve got a lot of sophisticated investors and I’m certain at some point there will be an expectation of some form of liquidity in their investment.”


Melbourne Cup winner Protectionist set to miss this year’s race

Defending champion Protectionist will almost certainly miss the Melbourne Cup in a fortnight, having pulled up sore after a disappointing Caulfield Cup run on Saturday.
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Broadmeadow trainer Kris Lees rated Protectionist “highly doubtful” when asked on Sunday night whether the German-bred six-year-old stallion would make it to the Flemington barriers on November 3. Protectionist finished 15th of 18 runners in the 2400 metre group1 Caulfield Cup, 10 lengths behind winner Mongolian Khan.

“He was found to be acutely sore in his sacroiliac joint this morning and he’ll be having scans on Monday or Tuesday,” Lees told the Newcastle Herald on Sunday night.

“He’s highly likely to spell.

“[Jockey] Brenton Avdulla said when he tracked in from the 900 he thought he was a chance, then felt he went amiss when turning, and was short in his action post-race.”

Protectionist’s spring campaign has been aimed at one race –  the Melbourne Cup he won so impressively last year.  He has failed to catch the eye in three previous starts this campaign over unsuitably short distances, and Lees has maintained he would not be at his best until he got out to the 3200m of the Melbourne Cup.

However, Lees said before Saturday’s race that he wanted to see Protectionist getting home strongly.

“We know he is a stayer and he has just needed to get the miles into his legs,” Lees said on Friday. “Having said that, to show he is on course for the Melbourne Cup you would want to see him getting home in a Caulfield Cup, because it is a similar field.”

It appeared those hopes would be answered when Protectionist made a strong move approaching the turn into the home straight, but he faded quickly and drifted back through the field.

Meanwhile,  four-year-old stallion Mongolian Khan stormed to the lead at the  top of the straight and was strong to the line under star New Zealand jockey Opie Bosson.

Lees’ other runner in the race, last year’s third-place getter Lucia Valentina, ran home well from the back of the field to finish ninth.

Lees indicated Protectionist would be examined at Werribee Vet Clinic on Monday.

Part-owned by Rutherford-based Australian Bloodstock racing syndicate, Protectionist was the toast of the Hunter last November when he stormed home to win the $6.2million “race that stops the nation”.

As jockey Ryan Moore piloted Protectionist across the line ahead of Red Cadeaux and Who Shot Thebarman, Australian Bloodstock assumed full ownership from German Christoph Berglar.

Lees then took the reins from German trainer Andreas Wohler and oversaw Protectionist’s preparation at his Broadmeadow stables, but the horse has been unplaced in eight starts on his watch and he has had to deal with a series of health issues.

After a disappointing Sydney Cup run in April, scans showed Protectionist had bruising on his left knee but no chips or breaks.

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Surprise packet delivers for handler

Mick Hudson and MGH Tip, of NSW, at the Supreme Australian Sheep Dog Championships at Campbell Town. Picture: PHILLIP BIGGSSHEEPDOG handler Mick Hudson, of New South Wales, said his dog, Richies Finn, had ‘‘something’’ when it won the novice class at the Supreme Australian Sheep Dog Championships, at Campbell Town, on Wednesday.
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But he was selling his young dog short.

The two-year old dog’s efforts were enough to secure Mr Hudson’s place in history – the first person ever to win all three class categories at the national event.

Hudson’s bitch was a shot out of the dark – she had never won a competition – and found her way into running against the best after qualifying for the initial Improver class.

She proved worthy of her promotion and consequently claimed the Improver title with a 19-point win.

In fact, Finn’s score was high enough to qualify her for the top-20 run-off for the Supreme open title, where the top 20 dogs compete and the top 10 highest-scoring dogs qualify for the final of the Supreme competition.

Finn belied her lack of competition at the top level and not only secured a place in the final, but was the top-scoring qualifier.

In fact, Richies Finn would have been the first dog ever to shoot through and top all classes if it weren’t for a half-point shortfall.

Finn finished second, toppled by another of Mr Hudson’s dogs, MGH Boy, with a 270.5-point win.

Three more of Mr Hudson’s dogs also qualified for the final, giving him half the 10-dog field.

The other finalists were Geoff Gibson with Gibsons DJ, Grant Cook with Grass Valley Moss, Malcolm Taylor with Mocarra Ed, Paul Elliott with Elliotts Buddy and Pip Hudson with Hudsons Kate.

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Swimming, golf, outdoor cinema …

Russell Drayton, and his daughter Bron.HEATED indoor swimming pool facilities, a mini golf course, an outdoor cinema and more will be constructed as part of a Launceston caravan park development worth more than $10.5 million.
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More than $600,000 has already been spent, using Tasmanian labour and materials, on cleaning up the former Treasure Island Caravan Park site on Glen Dhu Street at South Launceston.

The transformation is part of a large-scale plan devised by Big4 Launceston Holiday Park owners Russell and Jenine Drayton, their daughter Bron and son, Phillip.

The move to invest so heavily in Launceston comes on the back of Tasmania’s extensive tourism campaigns, something which has not gone unnoticed on the mainland, according to Mr Drayton.

‘‘I think Launceston people really underestimate how many people are coming here,’’ he said.

‘‘I’ve said again and again, it’s just a matter of bringing the right product and they’ll be here in droves.’’

The Drayton family owns and operates the TripAdvisor-acclaimed Cairns Crystal Cascades Holiday Park in Queensland, which sits on two hectares.

This 6.4-hectare Launceston site will comprise up to 100 cabins within the next five years.

The first phase of the Draytons’ vision, approved by Launceston City Council last Monday, includes the first phase of their new accommodation.

‘‘The four cabins were built in Tasmania at $139,000 each, times that by four and you’ve got $550,000,’’ Mr Drayton said.

‘‘Once we get those in, and can work with the council, we will start marketing heavily, especially on mainland Australia.

‘‘We see a big untapped market for what we’re doing on the mainland.’’

He said up to eight people in reception would be employed, as well as cleaners and groundsmen to match their growth.

Miss Drayton said a series of entertainment additions would be rolled out as their accommodation expanded.

‘‘(We’ll have) an indoor heated swimming pool with a splash park, different accommodation for families, couples, the honeymoon and elderly markets, mini golf and a soft-fall playground,’’ she said.

‘‘We’ve got a 20-metre by 9-metre jumping pillow going in, which is the biggest off-the-shelf jumping pillow you can get, an open-air cinema and a big multi-use recreational area.’’

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Classic tale to come to the theatre

Wind in the Willows cast members Katt Robinson, Bill Carney, Ruarri Stewart and Chris Rattray hide behind the molehill. Picture: SCOTT GELSTONTHE antics and adventures of Toad, Rat, Mole and Badger from the much-loved children’s novel, The Wind in the Willows, will hit a Launceston stage this week.
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Stephen Beckett Productions will bring Kenneth Grahame’s characters to life at the Earl Arts Centre from Friday.

‘‘It hasn’t been done for a while and our version includes a scene rarely included,’’ said Beckett, who has adapted, produced and directed the play.

‘‘Toad, Badger, Rat and Mole go on a little adventure in the woods and basically it’s about Badger, Rat and Mole trying to make Toad see sense, because he’s a bit of a loose cannon.’’

Beckett said his adaptation of The Wind in the Willows would include a scene based on the chapter The Piper at the Gates of Dawn – a mystical scene not often included in stage productions of the 1908 book.

‘‘It’s difficult to do but we’re putting it in,’’ he said.

Beckett said the play was suitable for people of all ages.

THE FACTS

WHAT: Stephen Beckett Productions presents Kenneth Graeme’s The Wind In The Willows.

WHERE: Earl Arts Centre, Launceston.

WHEN: Friday, October 23, 7pm; Saturday, October 24, 2pm and 6pm; Sunday, October 25, noon and 4pm.

HOW MUCH: Adults $25, concession $20, under 16 $15. Call the Princess Theatre on 63233666 or visit theatrenorth苏州美甲美睫培训学校419论坛

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Duathlon silver for Evans inAdelaide

LAUNCESTON triathlete Dylan Evans won his first world championship medal with a silver in the ITU World Duathlon Championships in Adelaide on Saturday.
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Launceston’s Dylan Evans, left, receives his silver medal with ITU World Duathlon Championship winner Matt McElroy, of the US, and Australian bronze medal winner Adam Rudgley in Adelaide on Saturday.

Evans, 22, finished eighth overall in a world-class elite field and claimed the silver medal for second place in the under-23 age group behind American Matt McElroy, with fellow Australian Adam Rudgley claiming the bronze.

Competitors completed a 10-kilometre run, 40km bike ride and 5km run and Evans crossed the line in 1 hour 50.28 minutes.

‘‘It was awesome to finish on the podium,’’ Evans said.

‘‘It was pretty hard and extremely hot and I was expecting the first run to be really quick but it was so much quicker than even I anticipated.

‘‘It was an unbelievable experience and tough enough any time but that feeling of finish on the podium was surreal.’’

Evans has spent much of the year competing in the professional European triathlon season

‘‘I moved to a new coach because I wanted to move up to the next level but it didn’t really pay off and even though I had some good results they weren’t what I was looking for,’’ he said.

He returned home to Launceston and has been coaching himself in the month leading up the Adelaide duathlon championship.

Evans said his next event will the the Point to Pinnacle race in Hobart again after he won the event last year.

‘‘I am keen to have another crack at it and hopefully it all goes to plan and I have a good race there but you never know who is going to turn up and it is a running race so as a triathlete you are already a couple of steps behind,’’ he said.

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