Seven new inductees will be welcomed next week into the prestigious Australian Racing Hall of Fame. As always, Melbourne Cup victors are among the line-up, including three-time Melbourne Cup winning jockey Jim Johnson. Joining Johnson in the jockeys’ category is Harold Badger, winner of six Melbourne Jockeys’ Premierships between 1938 and 1948.
The official ceremony will be conducted in Melbourne on Monday August 31 in conjunction with the Australian horse of the Year awards. The other champions of the turf to secure their place in Australian racing history include trainers Bayly Payten who won seven Sydney Metropolitan Trainers’ Premierships between 1940 and 1948; and Jack Green best known for his 1958 Melbourne Cup victory with Baystone.
The two horses to be inducted this year are the champion stallion Strawberry Road, and the 1950 Melbourne Cup legend, Comic Court.
The final inductee to be honoured, in the Associate category, is influential racing journalist Bill Whittaker, who was awarded with the 2008 Order of Australia Medal.
This year the racing public have been invited to vote for which of the four Hall of Fame nominated members will be elevated to Legend status, joining the “Cups King” Bart Cummings and the iconic Phar Lap.
The finalists are trainer TJ Smith, jockey Scobie Breasley, the magnificent mare Makybe Diva who won the Melbourne Cup three years in succession, and Carbine who dominated Australian racing in the late 19th century.