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NZTBA Life Membership for Sir Patrick Hogan

Last night's Annual General Meeting of the NZTBA, held at Ellerslie Racecourse, Auckland, awarded Honorary Life Memberships to two past presidents, Sir Patrick Hogan, Cambridge and Arthur Ormond, Hastings.

For more than 25 years Sir Patrick Hogan and his wife Justine, Lady Hogan have owned and operated Cambridge Stud, home of Sir Tristram and now of Zabeel.
Sir Patrick's work with the NZTBA spans 36 years, beginning in 1966 when he became the first secretary of the Waikato branch. He was elected to the Council in 1992 and became President a year later, holding that position until 1996. Sir Patrick, who was knighted in 2000, retired from the Council this year.

After receiving his Life Member's badge, Sir Patrick made comments based on the following notes which are published here with his permission:


President, Council, Members, thank you.

I am proud to accept and thank you for nominating and approving my Life Membership.

Certainly I have had many highs in this industry and attribute some of those to my involvement with the NZTBA. I note there are 16 Life Members and I have sat on the Council with 13 of them. It is very special for me to stand alongside those Life Members.

We are in desperate need of fixing this industry. We hear so often lately that it's in a state of rapid decline and I'm sure that is the case.

It's election year and already the politicians are out in force, making visits and promises and touting for votes. Where have they been for the last two years? We now find they have recently called for an economic plan. Will they fix it? No, they won't.

Recently I have strongly criticised government and politicians and I make no apology. They listen attentively but do not perform on the sound breeding and racing policies put forward to them by our industry. Surely we cannot put up any longer with their continued patronising attitude and that goes for not only this Labour Government but also the previous National Government.

They are only too pleased to attend and support functions and make presentations such as the New Zealand, Wellington and Auckland Cups and at the Mercedes Awards Dinner.

Seek politicians' support on any economic development or restructuring policies within our industry and where are they? Certainly not prepared to take any action whatsoever.

It's obvious that the Government's and politicians' attitude is that they cannot or will not take up on the initiatives.

May I suggest that the industry and its participants, the stakeholders, administrators, breeders, owners, trainers, jockeys etc urgently establish and decide what is required to realise economic growth.

We must determine and implement changes. I suggest that we place the Government in a position that they will categorically agree to not allow any political interference in any geographical area, which has too often happened in the past, to the detriment of all.

Urgency is required in taking matters into our own hands.

If the Government should not agree to give its unequivocal support to us then the stakeholders in this industry should for a period of time shut down racing.

Then and only then will they fully realise what our New Zealand breeding and racing industry is worth to this country and its earnings. We've pussy-footed around for long enough. It's our responsibility, let's fix it.

For example in this region alone:
*Why do we not race at Ellerslie more often?
*Why is there not an all weather track?
*Why do we need Avondale?
*Why can't Counties be a training centre?
*Why do we need Prices Road?

*Why do we have racetracks today at:
Te Rapa
Waipa
Matamata
Tauranga
Rotorua
Paeroa
Te Aroha
all in extremely close proximity.
*Why do these seven race clubs need well over 50 employees and committeemen to run them?
*Why do we need all the costly duplicated administration?
And it goes on and on.

No commercial business or company could survive if run like the thoroughbred industry. This industry itself must act.

For over forty years I have been proud to belong and be associated with thoroughbred breeding and racing and look forward, for the sake of the future, to stakeholders taking up the challenge.

Finally, I congratulate the new Councillors Mark Chittick and Sam Williams and wish them well.
Thank you.


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