PERCY Norrish was a real estate agent in Northam and was credited with being the father of the idea of forming a trotting club in Northam, becoming president of the Northam Trotting Club in 1954 and remaining in the chair for some 10 years. He and his fellow volunteers literally built the Northam Trotting Club from the ground up and his contribution to the club was later recognised with Life Membership.
Last Saturday Hilo Angus took out the 2017 edition of the Percy Norrish Memorial with young driver Dean Miller at the reins defeating Master Play and Laughing Child. Fittingly Hilo Angus is trained by Tom Groves who drove his first winner at the Northam track in 1964 which was the year that Percy Norrish retired as president of the club. Hilo Angus is a 5yo gelding by Village Jolt and was bred by Tom and Marie Groves at Kellerberrin and two years ago won the North Eastern Districts Derby at Burwood Park. Hilo Angus has a clear liking for the track and has now recorded four of his seven wins in Northam. Runner-up Master Play is also proving somewhat of a Northam specialist as he too has recorded four of his seven wins at Burwood Park.
The next meeting of the Northam Harness Racing Club will be run this Thursday, February 9, sponsored by Quin’s Gourmet Butcher, and Hilo Angus is again nominated for the meeting, as is Norrish Memorial third place-getter Laughing Child. Laughing Child is trained by Debbie Padberg who was active at Sunday’s Australian Pacing Gold yearling sale in Melbourne. Mrs Padberg bought two yearlings including a Village Jolt colt for $26,000 and a Betterthancheddar colt for $16,000.
Northam Cup winner aiming at Inter Dominion
OWNER Merv Butterworth and trainer Ross Olivieri have a candidate for the 2017 Inter Dominion in former New Zealand bred 5yo Im Full Of Excuses which won the 2017 Northam Cup last month. Im Full Of Excuses, with champion reinsman Chris Lewis at the reins, overcame a 30m handicap to win the 55th running of the $30,000 Group Three Northam Pacing Cup from This Time Dylan and Another Ayjay. It was the gelding’s third Cup win this season at Group Three level following earlier wins in the Kalgoorlie-Boulder Cup and York Cup and brought up his 15th win in 31 career starts. He won the Group Two Southern Supremacy Stakes in New Zealand as a 3yo in 2015 as Full Of Excuses. Olivieri declared post-race that “he plays my Inter Dominion class horses on a break on the track but was just too immature for this season’s championship but should be a genuine prospect this year”.