Thursday, October 24, 2019
The Newman McDonnell Memorial is one of the Mount Gambier Greyhound Racing Club’s longest-running feature events.
He was there at the public meeting held in the Mount Gambier City Hall on September 14, 1972, was one of the inaugural committee members of the South East Greyhound Racing Club and almost seven years later was president of the club when greyhound racing first commenced in the south east at the Glenburnie race track.
And long before that, in 1964, he had owned the inaugural winner of the Sandown Laurels – Tara Princess (Chief Zephyr x Oliveen) – Glenburnie and later the Lake Terrace East track both taking the name Tara Raceway.
Newman McDonnell died on November 15, 1985 at the age of 81, the first memorial being run 12 months later and won by Kenzel Lad. Subsequent memorials to be conducted at greyhound racing’s original track were: 1987 Bozie Flyer, 1988 Irkanda Leo, 1989 Invercoe Riot, 1990 National Ribbon, 1991 Foxtrot Oscar, 1992 Bush Pepper, 1993 Larradinya, 1994 Wild Welcome, 1995 Colin Ian and 1996 Ashanti Gem.
This year marks the 34th running of the memorial, heats to be conducted on Sunday, November 10 for grade five greyhounds over 512 metres with the final a week later.
Camo’s Lucky, trained at Penshurst by John Cameron, won the first memorial conducted at a TAB meeting in 2012 while Allendale East trainer David Peckham’s Bourne Again is the only greyhound to have won consecutive memorials – in 2013 and 2014.
Other recent winners include 2015 Boris Bekim (Brian Fish), 2016 Glenville Jester (Richard Clayfield), 2017 Lektra Stomp (Brian Lenehan) and 2018 Banjo Lass (Tracie Price).