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  • MarkovinaMarkovina    1,022 posts
    I think it was Bill Mack ( i didnt know he had a brother who fielded as well ) - used to be in a jumper with a tie underneath etc  - looked like he could go to church in that outfit

    Anyhow i went to a Harvey Saturday night meeting ( i use to like Harvey ) many many years ago - and in the main race Lyle Lindau had the favourite - and it was backed for a stack - about 7/4 into about 2s on - and it got beaten narrowly by about a neck - i think FRK might have beaten him - led all the way

    I went back into the betting ring straight after the race ( i think i backed the winner - lol - im pretty sure  i did ) and Bill Mack was so excited  and happy - and was shaking everybodys hand in sight . I thought at the time - he must have layed that  favourite for a bundle - and he was so pleased it got beat
  • ChariotsonfireChariotsonfire    1,695 posts
    Bill was an old style bookmaker and never deliberately kept one for himself. He was not a big risk taker so on that occasion he must have had no other option than to stand the plunge horse ver his comfort zone.

    I will use up one of my episodes on the Mack dynasty over the next day or two.
  • ChariotsonfireChariotsonfire    1,695 posts
    Episode 6 - The Mack Dynasty

    Bill Mack Snr was the patriarch of the bookmaking Macks and was a very successful owner through the 50s, 60s and 70s.

    He was not adverse to betting with his sons and hardly missed a metropolitan meeting. He was known to have feinting attacks in the bookies ring and due to their regularity everyone became a bit blase about them including his sons.

    Legend has it that one night at Richmond Raceway Bill Snr dropped to the ground in front of Eric's stand. Eric stepped over his father and onto his stand and put up the favorite at 6/4 causing a stampede of punters. Bill Snr laying prostrate on the concrete called out feebly to Eric "I will have a hundred on it Eric".

    This was just ahead of my time so I can attest to the veracity of the story but I believe it to be true.

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  • curmudgeoncurmudgeon    1,333 posts

    Episode 6 - The Mack Dynasty


    Bill Mack Snr was the patriarch of the bookmaking Macks and was a very successful owner through the 50s, 60s and 70s.

    He was not adverse to betting with his sons and hardly missed a metropolitan meeting. He was known to have feinting attacks in the bookies ring and due to their regularity everyone became a bit blase about them including his sons.

    Legend has it that one night at Richmond Raceway Bill Snr dropped to the ground in front of Eric's stand. Eric stepped over his father and onto his stand and put up the favorite at 6/4 causing a stampede of punters. Bill Snr laying prostrate on the concrete called out feebly to Eric "I will have a hundred on it Eric".

    This was just ahead of my time so I can attest to the veracity of the story but I believe it to be true.
    Hahaha....classic @Chariotsonfire

  • JayJayJayJay    5,010 posts
    edited April 12
    The original William Ernest Mack Snr hailed from SA where he racked a number of convictions for illegal SP bookmaking operations. In 1922, he ventured west and assumed ownership of the WA Football Budget, a sure fire money spinner as everyone who went to the footy bought a Budget. One of his sons (Allen) was the father of the very classy Swan Districts winger, Johnny Mack, a star player in Swans famous 1961 Premiership victory. Four of the five sons of WE Mack ended up as bookmakers and Bill snr wasn't all that interested in football, he treated the Budget simply as a business. He had an advertising agency in St Georges Terrace, Macks Advertising but in reality, it was a front for a large SP operation. He had a far greater interest in horses and owned the winner of the 1942 Perth Cup, Temple Chief, and he also owned the outstanding pacer Free Hall, the winner of the 1958 Interdominion at Wayville in SA. Free Hall was a much traveled horse.....he won the 2yo SA Breeders Plate, the 3 yo WA and SA Sires produce Stake as well as contesting every other mainland Derby....2nd to Bobbie Oro in the WA Derby, 2nd to the brilliant Argent in both the Victorian and the NSW Derbies. In the Interdominion Series in 1958, his lead up form was very modest and 20/1 was bet about him winning the final, which he did....beating Sibelia and First Division by a head x nose to claim the first prize of a whopping 10,000 pounds plus a 300 pound gold trophy. The race was 5 laps and 96 yards (12 furlongs and 206 yards) around the Wayville saucer, a crowd of 25,000 turned out and there were 96 bookmakers fielding...45 in the main "No 1 ring", a further 11 in the "No 2 ring" and another 40 operating on "The Flat". Free Hall's record after winning the final was 25 wins from 42 starts. When interviewed post race, owner WE Mack, after showering praise on trainer/driver Bill Shinn, remarked that he done "quite well" from the horses win.
  • ChariotsonfireChariotsonfire    1,695 posts
    I never realized that Johnny Mack was related to the bookmaking family.

    He was indeed a very good player for Swan Districts in that era.

    I can remember my father telling me that he asked Bill Snr what he liked in the next and Bill said he fancied so and so.  Dad said what about your horse, the bookies have it favorite.  Bill looked at the book and said "I didn't realize I had a starter".
  • JayJayJayJay    5,010 posts
    Bill bred an awful lot of horses (173) aside from the two mentioned above and had a strong connection with both Bill and Frank Shinn. Raider Adios who won both the Derby and the Sires Produce double and was the first to go 2 minutes up at Kalgoorlie, First Adventure, Norm Again, Just Mick etc.

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  • ChariotsonfireChariotsonfire    1,695 posts
    Episode 7 - How Horses Can Improve

    A successful hobby trainer and vineyard owner took over a horse with immediate results. The horse won a Northam Cup defeating Zakara.

    It was also heavily backed to beat Jack Morris in a stand at GP. At the first attempt it began very well and Jack Morris was very badly away but a false start was declared. At the second attempt Jack Morris began much better and proved a touch too good for the plunge horse.

    At a barbecue at my house soon after a fellow bookmaker said to the trainer "Don't let your horse **** on the grapes or he will turn them into watermelons". Much mirth and laughter followed.

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  • ChariotsonfireChariotsonfire    1,695 posts
    **** slang for urinate edited out.
  • JayJayJayJay    5,010 posts
    Wouldn't have been Tryax Warrior, would it?

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  • Ridersonthestorm33Ridersonthestorm33    8,594 posts
    edited April 13
    Mentioned this one before but might be a few new readers...recall one rough and ready trainer...funny guy...had a few positive's in the 80s...had some good horse's, drove a little too, early 80s he had one in the last up the bush - got the chockies - swab time! Horse wouldn't go, steward waited and waited...no luck, then steward said ok "we'll see you at your stable"....off went the trainer like daylight, racing home at lightning speed - when got there ahead of the steward/s he said the horse did the biggest wee of all time!

    He was free for another day! Name best kept mum to protect the innocent. Been well and truly out of the game for awhile now - he did cop a bit of time.

    He was so cunning this guy that if he said "look I reckon this horse has got a big chance tonight and you can have something on" well you wouldn't back it, in fact wouldn't touch it with a barge pole, however if he said diddly squat about it or played it hopes down - then definetly get on!! Haha
  • Ridersonthestorm33Ridersonthestorm33    8,594 posts
    edited April 13
    Still reckon their was a good system in the 80's - whereby when they'd conduct heats going into a final...the number of times a Fred Kersley trained horse would be a beaten favourite in a heat/s and come out and win the final was uncanny.

    A final's time player alright - the heat was just a step up - the final was the big one in that camp. First introduction to beware the longer priced stablemate too. Still stands the test of time today - as recent as last Friday night - and in all codes.

    The other success had with the Kersley camp - not many of them missed a place - would often sit in the breeze and if they didn't forge to the front and win, they'd still run 2nd or 3rd, or he'd bring them home from the back into a place. Outstanding driver he was. Has to be close to number one I've ever seen.

    Aggressive but cool as a cucumber too.
  • JayJayJayJay    5,010 posts

    Early 80s he had one in the last up the bush - got the chockies - swab time! Horse wouldn't go, steward waited and waited...no luck, then steward said ok "we'll see you at your stable"....off went the trainer like daylight, racing home at lightning speed - when got there ahead of the steward/s he said the horse did the biggest wee of all time!

    He was free for another day! Name best kept mum to protect the innocent.

    So you are saying that after the last race, the stewards followed the bloke home to swab the horse, off course, at half past anything in the morning??? Really??
  • ChariotsonfireChariotsonfire    1,695 posts
    That did happen JayJay and the trainer was fairly prominent at the time. Did a couple of stretches for positive swabs.

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  • JayJayJayJay    5,010 posts
    Okay, apologies, I am surprised ....I think I know who you are referring ....they do bloods nowadays if your horse doesn't "cooperate" and don't let you leave until it's all done and dusted. Another middle swan trainer?

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  • Ridersonthestorm33Ridersonthestorm33    8,594 posts
    edited April 14
    Yes different times back then...swabbing obviously a different ball game. I had no idea how swabbing went on back then or now but at the time he told of the happening with genuiness and relief!

    At that stage don't think had been outed at all. Could get one up in the bush from time to time, then a couple of good ones in the city...was later down the track picked up the newspaper and read he'd been disqualified, things were beginning to unfold.
  • Ridersonthestorm33Ridersonthestorm33    8,594 posts
    edited April 14
    Where we got the laugh was how he explained horse wouldn't go - and when got to wherever he needed to be before the "constabulary" arrived said the horse did the biggest and longest wee he'd ever seen!

    Whether a little poetic licence with that statement will never know but was funny hearing at the time.

    Think from memory too - they tried everything to get it to go - and can imagine him hoping it doesn't go haha. Must have been fun and games, in a serious way.
  • savethegamesavethegame    1,185 posts
                                 WELL PLANNED PLUNGE ON
                                ;;  SPORT ROYAL HITS RING;;;    
        
            Backed from 4s to 2s bookmakers paid out 12,000 pounds. todays value ?

    Perth oct 23 1960---------A well planned commisson------one of the biggest ever  worked at glooucester park-----on sport royal  cost enclosure bookmakers about 12,thousand pounds last night for thepacer finished faston the outside towin the oval handicap.

    It was sport royal's first start for six weeks and he was backed from 4s to favouritism at 2s
    Two enclosure fielders each faced a payout of more than a thousand pounds after the race.


    Sport Royal who has a deformed hoof is now on a 2-15 mark and is eligible for most free-for -alls and other open class events.
    His win  completed a double for the herdsman lake trainer-reinsman,phil Coulson who earlier in the night had won the October handicap with Robert sheen.

    Coulson drove sport royal three spiders out from the rails in the middle of the field for the first three lapsand given full rein at the top of the home straight in the last lap the pacer won narrowly from big smoke and the early pacemaker wilvetta.

    Sports royal was suited by the slow early pace and although his mile rate for the 13 furlongswas only 2.14.3/4,he covered the lasttwo furlongs in 31.1/2 sec. (2.6rate)

                                                     SIMILIAR TACTICS.

    Coulson adopted similar  driving tactics with the 14/1 chance robert sheen in the October handicap. Robert sheen emerged from the middle of the field with less then two furlongs to go and ran on  to an easy victory from  billy collette and defiance.

    It was Robert sheen's first win for Coulson who took over the training of the gelding early this year when Robert sheen had foot soreness.

    Last night Robert sheen as 11-yearold  paced at a 2.9 1/4 rate which equaled  his rate when he won the final of the Christmas handicap nearly five years ago.

    His most important win was in the w.a trotting  cup in 1957,after he recovered from a liver aliment that threatened to cut short his pacing career.Robert Sheen was then trained and driven by Bernie cushing….Robert Sheen set his best mile of 2.6.1/2. when he finished second to radiant venture in the grand final of the interdominion championship at Gloucester park in march 1957.

    Knew I had read this article a few years ago have mentioned bits and pieces, about it on here but low and behold was looking for article regards the champion Tulloch sitting four wide to win the cox plate oct.22 1960 in a Australasian record time.and this sport royal story was with it.



  • Ridersonthestorm33Ridersonthestorm33    8,594 posts
    Am guessing that the urine swabbing was a little more random back then too ? Only the occasional winner might have been swabbed ? So you could "roll the dice" a little ?
    Stewards back then would've had there suspicions though too, one would imagine.

    Whereas today every winner is automatically swabbed ?

    And of course so much more sophisticated now days to stay one step ahead and rightly so.
  • Ridersonthestorm33Ridersonthestorm33    8,594 posts
    edited April 14
    All that money on Sport Royal but they were still betting 2/1 in from the 4/1 - today's corporates would be 4/1 into 1/10 with a lot less bets placed.
    If you a horse back then came in from say 5/1 to 7/2 that was a huge go, today not quite the same meaning.

    The advantage on course back then ( a bit before my time ) would've been strength in bookmaker numbers - thought bookie size on track in the 80s was amazing, when hear of the number on track at some places in the 60s and 70s it's hard to believe. Did I read somewhere on the forum early 80s Pinjarra had 15-20?!! Amazing.

    So when bookie numbers got down to just single digits and then down to a few - couldn't blame them at all for betting cramper odds. Competition is healthy!

    Perfectly legal with bookmakers to lay off with other bookies too - that was always interesting to watch to see if bet accepted - most times yes that I saw, and also bookies could back any horse with another bookmaker, and that's fair enough too.

    The only thing didn't agree on was bookmakers owning pacers or racehorses - was 100% against that back then - still am.

    Never has to be a clean game - but at least has to be seen to be clean.
  • JayJayJayJay    5,010 posts
    STG, my ears pricked up when I read your post on Sport Royal. Where did you source that story from? Eerily reminscent of the infamous "whistleblower" plunge from around that time, which I have been unsuccessfully trying to track down for years and years. We all thought it occurred around Anzac day but maybe that's been the wrong bit. The 1960 year date is right on the money. Is it a Trove old newspaper source...maybe I have been looking in the wrong place. Very distant memory of Sport Royal's deformed hoof that someone, possibly Phil or old Ben Jefferyes(the actual blower of the whistle) told me about but too long ago to be sure.
  • Ridersonthestorm33Ridersonthestorm33    8,594 posts
    edited April 14
    Am guessing when Sport Royal won at GP in 1960 - their would've been 40 - 50 bookmakers on track ? If anywhere around that mark - remarkable.
    Still at 2/1 when they jumped - strength in numbers.
  • savethegamesavethegame    1,185 posts
    Jay Jay; the old Kalgoorlie miners are in I think you call it microfishe, and you were able to go to Kalgoorlie town hall and view the old papers think in three month lots with Mondays edition always having the most pacing and racing stories...…

    But since January this year with the transfer of  the war museum  part to the boulder town hall,,also   viewing of old Kalgoorlie miners has gone to boulder but the machine they use for viewing  as yet hasn't made the move , and they are using a prehistoric one, nowhere the quality of vision but they are hoping to get the Kalgoorlie town hall one out to boulder in council time this year sometime..

    Had searched  for the Anzac (whistleblower) came up with good one regards W.F.Johnson (pop) who was a gallipoli veteran and, won a Anzac cup with kiwi Dillon the box I had with old racing and pacing stories has disappeared that  I found interesting and printed out ,

    But have another phil one 1960 kolworth  when he lost 100 yards to record his first defeat after eight starts. got other chores put up later.

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  • JayJayJayJay    5,010 posts
    Thanks STG, they have all the West Australians on Microfish at the State Library, it is a matter of me finding the time and energy to spend a few days up there.

    Riders, it was not just the number of bookies fielding that enabled the 4/1 into 2/1 moves, it was the competitiveness of the racing. Those old Free For Alls and Invitation Stakes had enormous depth back then, 14 runners from the stand, barrier draw no where near as important, handicapping done properly and there may be as many as 6 or 8 or more really live chances, so the market was often wide openand prices could sustain large commissions.....and perhaps just a tad of laying off at the SP shops via the phone box on Scotsmans Hill.

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  • getthechangegetthechange    79 posts
    nostalagia - too young to remember but remember being told - dug these up from some old cuttings - colourful career - 12 months for winning at trots - 12 months for winning at gallops - stewards pleasure for blowing up in the stewards room (think ended up doing 3 years) some old clippings and betting plunges - last horse to start twice at GP?? - hopefully the attachments work
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    dark water.pdf
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    murella lad.pdf
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  • VillageKidVillageKid    1,382 posts
    Some great reads there GTC.
    I am interested though to know if the Belmont Training Track was located at Ascot or Belmont Park Racecourse or elsewhere in Belmont if you know?
  • getthechangegetthechange    79 posts

    Track was a private track in Abernethy Road owned by a guy with the surname of Gobby.

    Phillock live on the corner of Wynyard and Abernethy and Craig Murphy when old enough could tell you which was which

  • ChariotsonfireChariotsonfire    1,695 posts
    edited April 14
    Getthechange the story on Murella Lad brought back some memories.

    I was 16 (too young to bet) when I went to a meeting at the old Pinjarra track and backed the card. I think there may have been only six races and Murella Lad defeated Eaton Hall (Leo Keys). I think Ivos Son and Wool Top  may have won for a trainer/driver by the name of Woolhead, I can't remember his first name.

    Anyway I won 75 pounds and bought a 2nd hand FC Holden.  I was too young to get a license so my girl friend (now my wife of 50 years) would drive me to work and then go onto her place of employment.

    Pretty easy to see why I became hooked on the punt for life.

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  • savethegamesavethegame    1,185 posts
    Never forget my first attempt to have a bet with a bookie at Kalgoorlie round 12-14 no more. My mother who was a big punter mentioned  before she won a lot money on horse called tugman in heat of w.a.derby 100-66 was the on course flucs.,my mother backed it around s.p. shops some paid s.p. some had 33/1 max.

    Back to my experience mum gives me 5 dollars go up to bookie 5 dollars on beau decca,, he goes son you are way to young to bet, so he made a. scene the ring was a full crowd, He yells out son I will let you have this bet  but if this horse doesn't win you make a promise to all these people you will never have another bet, my reply no way, so no bet. gee wish had i took up the deal the horse never won.     and wish I could remember who the bookie was.

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  • MarkovinaMarkovina    1,022 posts

    Mentioned this one before but might be a few new readers...recall one rough and ready trainer...funny guy...had a few positive's in the 80s...had some good horse's, drove a little too, early 80s he had one in the last up the bush - got the chockies - swab time! Horse wouldn't go, steward waited and waited...no luck, then steward said ok "we'll see you at your stable"....off went the trainer like daylight, racing home at lightning speed - when got there ahead of the steward/s he said the horse did the biggest wee of all time!

    He was free for another day! Name best kept mum to protect the innocent. Been well and truly out of the game for awhile now - he did cop a bit of time.

    He was so cunning this guy that if he said "look I reckon this horse has got a big chance tonight and you can have something on" well you wouldn't back it, in fact wouldn't touch it with a barge pole, however if he said diddly squat about it or played it hopes down - then definetly get on!! Haha

    Your last paragraph reminded me a bit of Chris Gleeson

    I knew this bloke in Sydney - well he used to bet at the same TAB i did - i think he was a hairdresser or something

    Anyhow he had a  horse with Gleeson - not a Harold Park horse - a country type horse - Rocky something i think

    One Saturday night late at night where in the TAB - and this bloke rang Gleeson ( it wasnt his horse ) because he had runner in the next race - and  i said to him - what did he say . He said Chris thinks he can win this - but he then added- i cant trust Chris so i am going to back something else !!

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