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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 04 Hansard (Wednesday, 21 April 2021) . . Page.. 1026 ..


I had the great pleasure of being the on-course broadcaster on a number of occasions when Karuta Queen ran here in Canberra and in Queanbeyan and, of course, she won all of them. Karuta Queen was a $30,000 purchase that went on to win $1.87 million, most of which was under the care of Neville Layt. As a four-year-old mare she was transferred to the stables of Peter Moody, but she failed to replicate the blistering form of her two- and three-year-old years. That was a real testament to Neville as a horse man.

My friend Neville Layt graced us with his presence on this planet for 76 years. His early involvement in the racing game was as a jockey. His father was a jockey, and he certainly looked like he should have been a jockey. I never saw him ride, but I would love to know what weight he rode at because, as my father would have said, this bloke would have to run around in the shower to get wet. There was nothing of him at all.

After a particularly bad broken leg he took up as a trainer in Queanbeyan. He was able to develop a very close and genuine connection with his horses, particularly the two-year-olds, and the tributes are flowing in from around the country. Joe Cleary, from Queanbeyan said, “He was a straight shooter. If he had to tell you to get stuffed, he would.” I am thinking he would probably choose another word. According to Joe, he was a bit of a father figure and he said it is going to be very, very, sad around the racecourse for a while. Leading Sydney rider Tommy Berry was also glowing in his praise of Neville.

Thoroughbred Park is racing this Friday and the club has renamed their opening race. The race sponsors, the Ginninderra Cricket Club, have allowed their race to become the Neville Layt Handicap. To make this even more special, this will be one of the final occasions that a horse races with Neville Layt as its official trainer. Never Astern will carry the Layt colours in the race named after Neville on Friday.

Furthermore, the races in Sydney on Saturday are at Royal Randwick and the AJC has named their opening race the Vale Neville Layt Highway Handicap, remembering that Nifty Neville trained the first ever Highway Handicap winner in Grand Proposal. So on Saturday afternoon at Randwick in a race named after him, the late Neville Layt will have his final runner go around under his name—Redicon is engaged in the opening event on Saturday.

My thoughts are with Barb and the whole family, including Adrian and Nadia. There are nine grandchildren, of which Neville was so very, very proud. Rest in peace, Neville Layt.

Yerrabi electorate—community engagement

MS ORR (Yerrabi) (6.31): I rise to update the Assembly on what has been happening in my electorate of Yerrabi since I last spoke in a sitting week. On Sunday, 11 April I had the pleasure of attending the Federation of Indian Associations ACT Harmony Day event. The event was celebrating harmony and inclusion of people from all different cultures and walks of life. There were many familiar faces there, with other Yerrabi MLAs attending, as well as Minister Stephen-Smith and Minister Rattenbury.


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