Avoca is a quaint little town nestled out west, in between Ballarat and Maryborough. The first white fella to see it was Major Mitchell , way back in 1836. He named it after a river back in County Wicklow in Ireland.
Arriving on track i caught up with Ann, and Denis, with the crew from Talbot. Interesting to see Saturday was a TAB meeting. In my 6 years as a member at Avoca there’d not been a TAB meeting. Seriously it must be over a decade since there was a TAB meeting at Avoca; can anyone recall when?
It was a pleasant sunny day on track for a 6 race card. Training honours for the day went to Mark Kavanagh. He brought a team of three runners with him, saddling a runner in races two, three , and four, all saluting, resulting in a treble. Unsure if there’s a future Maldivian in this group. Riding honours went to Nikita Berriman. In the race book she was Nikita Mclean, though track announcer Rick Mcintosh remined us she was reverting to her maiden name of Nikita Berriman. She had a five race book for the day, riding placings in the first two, then a treble over the final three . I was particularly happy as her victories in Race 4 and 6, Boltamour and Haluva Storm , gave me the daily double, as well as an all up win and place. Thankyou Nikita.
As i mentioned earlier this was the first TAB meeting at Avoca for many a moon. I’ve noticed a few of the rural tracks in Victoria have started regaining the occasional TAB meeting, Gunbower amongst them. Now it would be good if this could happen back in NSW. Berrigan, a track i enjoy, has not had a TAB meeting since 2002. It has a huge Cup meeting first Saturday in November, and it is certainly a track with long, proud traditition , being the home of the famous Honeychurch family, as well as the only NSW track running the Victorian way.
Next meeting in Avoca is Anzac Day 2104. Until then, there are other tracks to visit, other stories to write. Happy punting,