SA TROTS John Conry's 2yo Star Man steals the show

SHOWING no signs of slowing down, veteran horseman John Conry has an interesting take on his time within harness racing.

Applying for a trainer’s licence after buying a hack at a clearance sale in 1954, Conry was told to “come back” when he was old enough!

Undeterred by the delay, Conry returned to the stewards as soon as he turned 18 to become one of South Australia’s youngest trainers.

Fast forward to the Globe Derby meeting earlier this week and Conry is winning as one of the state’s eldest trainers!

“There are three 86-year-old trainers in South Australia and I’m one of them,” Conry said. “I’ve gone from being the youngest one here to the oldest.

“In 1954 I bought a horse in the Coles Brother’s Sale for seven pound and 10 shillings and asked the stewards for a trainer’s license.

“They asked how old I was, said ’17’ and was told to come back when I was 18, which I did.

“I won a race with that horse, which was named Bay Mist, at Kadina in about 1956.”

While Bay Mist took a while to notch her solitary win, Conry’s latest venture – Star Man – broke his maiden upon debut.

Driven by David Smith, Star Man led throughout from the pole to score by 10-and-a-half metres from Tembie, with Waitpinga Reactor 13-and-a-half metres away third.

By rating 1:59.1 for the 1800-metre Kindergarten Stake heat, the two-year-old booked a berth in the Final, which is scheduled to be conducted at the same venue on March 25.

“I picked him at the Sales as I liked his breeding and so far he has lived up to expectations,” Conry said.

“He has pulled up well from the run and will benefit from it, but I don’t think I will run him in one of the other heats at this stage and just go straight to the Final.

“It’s been a long time since I had a horse win on debut and think I have to go back to Timber Merchant which won first-up in the 1960s.”


Photo:  Walter Bulyga