A gala function at Perth’s Convention Centre on Saturday saw a further five thoroughbred racing inductions into the West Australian Racing industry Hall Of Fame.
Champion gallopers Blue Spec and Miss Andretti, jockey Eric Treffone, trainer George Towton and administrator Harry Bolton were induced before an audience of almost 500 guests.
Blue Spec was the first West Australian galloper to win a Melbourne Cup, which he did in 1905, when travelling to Victoria was a feat in itself.
Having already won a Kalgoorlie Cup and Perth Cup, he returned from his victory at Flemington to win the Helena Vale Cup carrying a massive 10 stone, winning a purse of 130 sovereigns and commencing an amazing run of Perth Cup wins for 2010 Hall Of Fame inductee, PA Connolly.
Voted Australian Champion Racehorse in 2007, Miss Andretti started 23 times at Group or Listed level for 14 wins. This high-class mare won five Group 1 events in Victoria after winning Western Australia’s premier sprint in 2005: the Winterbottom Stakes.
After achieving the 2007 Lightning Stakes-Newmarket Handicap Group1 double at Flemington, the mare travelled to the Royal Ascot carnival in England to record a dominant win in the Group 2 King’s Stand Stakes against the best sprinters in Europe.
She retired to stud in 2008 with prizemoney of $2.8 million dollars.
Eric Treffone rode with distinction from the early 1930s through to the mid 1950s. He won the WA Jockey Premiership nine times, which held for several decades until recently eclipsed by Paul Harvey.
Treffone’s most notable wins included: The Railway Stakes (1938, 1942), the Perth Cup (1938, 1939, 1952), the WA Derby (1938, 1942, 1952) and the Karrakatta Plate (1944).
George Towton was a larger than life character from the early days of WA racing and is the only person to own, train and ride a Perth Cup winner.
He trained six Perth Cup winners, the WA Derby four times and at least four Railway Stakes in a period of ten years.
A long life span was not so common in his time and he died in 1906 at the age of 53.
Harry Gatenby Bolton was appointed to the position of Managing Secretary of the West Australian Turf Club in 1958. He held the position for two decades during a period of great progress for both the club and racing industry as a whole.
He brought excellent business and people skills to the position and under his leadership the WATC flourished (much to the envy of his racing peers across the country).
Bolton oversaw the introduction of the photo-finish, new running rails and on-course closed circuit television at both Ascot and Belmont racecourses.
The construction of the new track and then state-of-the-art grandstand at Belmont Park were among his great accomplishments.
Bolton held the position until his death in 1978.