Wagga leaders back Scobie Breasley statue

The plaque dedicating the Scobie Breasley mounting yard at the Wagga racetrack.
Nanjing Night Net

A CALL for the great jockey Scobie Breasley to be be immortalised in his home town in the form of a statue looks like a winner with community and sporting leaders.

Highly-respected cricket coach Warren Smith this week called for a statue of Breasley, who died in 2006, to be erected in Bolton Park.

“He’s the most successful sportsman to ever come from Wagga,” Mr Smith said.

Breasley rode five Caulfield Cup winners and tallied two English Derbies and a Prix de L’Arc de Triomphe among his 3251 wins.

Member for Riverina, Michael McCormack, was the last journalist tointerview Breasley, in 2001.

“He said to me: ‘You’re from Wagga, you must be okay’,” Mr McCormack said.

Mr McCormack said he supported the statue idea.

“When I was on the MTC (Murrumbidgee Turf Club) committee with Barney Hymes we talked informally about it,” Mr McCormack said.

“I think it should be at the MTC, Scobie rode there a few times at cup carnivals.”

Mr McCormack also bought into the debate whether Breasley was Wagga’s greatest sportsperson.

“That is a question and half,” Mr McCormack said.

“As a sportsman on the international stage he probably was.”

Mayor Greg Conkey also thinks the statue idea is a winner, but believes it should be placed in a more publicly accessible location.

“Because of his profile, I think it would be better placed in a more central location than the MTC,” Councillor Conkey said.

“I think Bolton Park is an ideal spot, or somewhere along the main street even.

“We already have some statues down the main street.

“It’s a place where everyone can enjoy it.

“The MTC is fine, but I think a more prominent spot would be better suited.”

As for funding, Cr Conkey is open to the idea of it being paid for out of council’s public art fund, but said it was something that needed to be considered by the community.

MTC chief executive, Scott Sanbrook, said the Wagga racetrack’s mounting yard was named in honour ofScobie Breasley in April, 2013, but he thought his organisation would consider hosting a statue if the idea had the support of the city.

“It would be a terrific way to honour such a wonderful Wagga ambassador,” Mr Sanbrook said.

Scobie Breasley was inducted into the Wagga Sporting Hall of Fame in 1998.

He was born in Wagga in 1914 and left the city as a 14-year-old to ride as an apprentice in Melbourne.

Sadly, he did not ride a Melbourne Cup winner.

In 16 attempts the best he finished was second, in 1933 andin 1946.

He landed more than 2000 winners in England.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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