Aussie racing open to ridicule
- BY:TONY ARROLD
- From:The Australian
- July 23, 2012 12:00AM
Blackman now races as Lady Blackman. Source: Supplied
AUSTRALIA may well be the politically correct capital of the world, but why should its racing image be put to international ridicule by the Blackman affair last week?
A filly by the classy young stallion Excellent Art, Blackman was registered by her owners in recognition of the noted Australian artist Charles Blackman, and proved a clever winner on debut a fortnight ago for trainer David Hayes.
However, racing authorities ordered a name change after a (single) complaint.
So the filly is to now race as Lady Blackman — much to the amusement overseas of readers of international racing news.
Hayes, like every fair-minded Australian, was flabbergasted.
Where, then, was this complainant when Hayes about five years ago took in a Foreplay filly that her owners had named Ohmygod? Where was this person when Belle Terras (say it slowly) was winning in Sydney, when Tsipura (try it backwards) was winning in Melbourne?
But in the post-registration of Sirjonker, a name change was ordered for the colt so that possible embarrassment would be avoided for a former governor-general — the same one remembered as much for his 1977 Melbourne Cup presentation speech (and the condition in which he gave it) as he was for the dismissal two years earlier of the Whitlam government.
Probably a good thing, then, that Far Call, a filly born in 1970, went off to stud without having raced, lest our politically correct fans’ ears might have been offended by the dulcet — but very fast — tones of the race callers across the nation.
But it is a name that fairly describes the offence level involved in the Blackman affair.