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Yarding shows pens need

The combination of a strong market, an excess of prime cattle and dry roads saw Dubbo agents draw for 7975 head for their regular sale on ThursdayOctober 13.
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Scanning of the yarding hadnot been completed at the time ofwritingbut needless to say the complexhadoverflowed with many agents requiring a re-run at the end of the day.

A re-run often consistsof cattle that were not booked in prior to adraw. Progress is being made with the improvements to the yards but with the number of wet days not helping the cause.

From an agent’s point of view the most important part of construction is yet to commence –the addition of another 150 to 200 promised sell pens.Thursday’sdraw was based on 28-plus head per penwhich, unless the cattle in question are Bobbiecalves, become impossible to fit. This in turn necessitateswithdrawing some cattle from sale orhaving a re-run.

Once again, the quality and finish of the cattle was outstanding. This should continue far into coming weeks.

The National Livestock Reporting Service (NLRS) has released the numbers for the cattle yards reported on in its market survey.

The top 10 yardsshow very little change and are ratedas follows: 1. Dubbo 236,651 head,2.Wagga 187,105 head, 3.Carcoar 146,667, 4.Tamworth 112,118,5. Casino 107,462, 6.Gunnedah 97,294, 7.Forbes 72,922, 8.Moss Vale 67,752, 9.Inverell 67,406, 10.Scone 60,505.

Tamworth moved from sixth to fourth. Casino from seventh to fifth and Moss Vale tenth to eighth.

Losers were Gunnedah and Forbes both of which seemed to lose a spot or two. It will be interesting to see where the new complexat Yass fits in after a full 12 months of operation. My guess is this centre will quickly assume a position in the top 10if the (NLRS)includes it in itsregular market reporting.

Dubbo has again displayed the important role it occupies in the livestock and agency industry by being selected by TopXAustralia as the venue for its annual conference and training seminars.

TopX,with a network of 12 offices in Queensland and one in NSW, has its headquarters at Roma. From October 21 to 24,35 to 40 of its employees will take part. This influx of people will do no harm whatsoever to the localeconomy.

David Monk of NLRS has finalised his report for this sale with most grades considerably cheaper. Best vealers lost closeto 30c/kg. Young feeders were 25 to 30c/kg back.Young restocker calves were stronger with 465c/kg the best price.Grown steers came in at 15/16c cheaper. Cows were seven to 13c less, topping at 267c/kg. Best bulls recorded 287c/kg. Best heavy feeder steers sold from 322 to 388c/kg.

Stock news: Local stock and station agent Bill Tatt discusses the latest industry news from across the region, in particular the big yarding at Dubbo. Photo: File.

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Multicultural festival unites cityPhotos

Multicultural festival unites city | Photos Aarya Thapa, 12, and Pragya Oli, 12, in Nepalese dress.
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TRADITIONAL DRESS: Svetlana Krasnova moved to Wagga from Russia five years ago and wore a traditional headdress to Saturday’s Fusion 16 festival. Picture: Kieren L Tilly

Robyn Kirk from Wagga.

Soban Kamran, 9, from Wagga tries on medieval dress.

Theo Cawthorne and Phoebe Cawthorne from Wagga.

Mariangela Osiecki from Wagga and Joy Walker from Culcairn appear with the Society for Creative Anachronism from the Shire of Bordescros medieval recreationists.

Performers from True Vibenation.

Performers from True Vibenation.

Performer Aaradhna from New Zealand.

Elsie Shephard, 7 months, from Wagga.

Salah Khodedah, 16, from Wagga with his portrait.

Henry Pavert, 2, and Simon Pavert from Cootamundra.

Madeline McPherson, 3, and Emily McPherson from Wagga.

Peter Labang cooks Burmese delicacies.

Kristy Nariya, 15 months, finds her portrait with her mum, Amita Nariya.

Kristy Nariya, 15 months, finds her portrait.

DJ Saca La Mois from Melbourne spins some tunes from South America.

Erica Fallon, 6, from Wagga.

Sam Hulford from Cootamundra Bollywood All Stars.

Kon Kudo with the Circle Holics jugglers.

Maddox Tokley, 18 months, from Wagga.

Fusion 16.

Fusion 16.

Fusion 16.

Fusion 16.

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Greyhounds back in action at Wauchope

THE dogs were back barking at Hastings River Greyhound Clubon Saturday for one of the first meetings since New South WalesPremier Mike Baird’s ban backflip.
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Winner: Mini Cousin stormed home in race five at Wauchope on Saturday. Photo: Ivan Sajko

And it was Mini Cousin who celebrated in style in race five for Bellangry trainer Karl Miller.

She finished the race in a scintillating time of 21.56 seconds ahead of Eye’s Brodie and Showtime Lucy.

It was a staggering one-tenth of a second, or a length and a half,outside the track record.

“It’s a very rare, very fasttime,” Miller said.

“They thought it was close to the record, but it wasn’t quite.”

It was Mini Cousin’s first run in more than a month after the industry stopped following Mr Baird’s original plan to ban greyhound racing.

“Icouldn’t get her a run with everyone being shut down so I gave her that time off and it did her good becauseit’s the fastest time she’s ever ran,” Miller said.

“She jumped reasonably welland then took off from the first turn and it was all over.When she gets to the front she’s got very good sections.

“She never used to jump, she used to come out a couple of lengths behind and then she’d find trouble trying to get through. She got into second on Saturday and shot past them.”

Miller felt drawing box five contributed to Mini Cousin just missing out on the track record.

“I knew she was a pretty good little dog, but having box five makes it a little bit harder because it’sright in the middle,” he said.

“If she had have had the inside or the outside box I believe she would have beaten the track record. She’s got a big future.”

Miller himself had to overcome a heart complaint which had seen him lyingin a hospital bed for the last six days.

“It was beating a bit too fast, so they’ve had to put me on a few things but hopefully they’re on top of it now,” he said.

“I got a bit excited yesterday and I thought I was going to go down on the track, but I was lucky I had good friends there to take over.”

He had hoped to head to Maitland on Thursday, but will have to wait until Grafton next Monday for his next race.

“I was going to go to Maitland this week but they’re maiden heats so we’ll go toGrafton next Monday night,” he said.

“She loves Grafton; she’s had three starts for two wins and a third.”

Miller said he would now look at the Wauchope Cup at the end of the year for Mini Cousin to continue her good form.

“I think keeping her fresh and not give her too much running will be the key,” he said.

“She hates the walking machine and goes out in her little yard four times a day and then does her own thing.”

The trainer said there was a different feel at the track on Saturday.

Trainers and owners alike were relieved to be back doing what they loved.

“It was unbelievable, it was a different feeling to go back and see all your friends.”

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Tiger takes gong

WINNING GRIN: Gundagai lock Brett Eccleston took out the Eric Weissel Medal at the Group Nine presentation at Murrumbidgee Turf Club on Saturday. Picture: Kieren L Tilly
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Gundagai lock Brett Eccleston dominated the final rounds of the Group Nine seasonto be crowned a comfortable winner of the Eric Weissel Medal on Saturday.

Eccleston polled 12 votes in the last six roundsto defeat Southcity’s Kyle McCarthy by seven votes.

Junee’s Daniel Foley was a further vote behind.

Eccleston was surprised by the margin of victory.

“I was saying to Damian Willis that if I was to win it I would be up there with someone else,” Eccleston said.

“I just didn’t think I would win it by myself and to win it by this much is a real honour.

“I am a very happy man.”

The end of the season flourish also coincided with Eccleston taking over the captaincy with James Smart sidelined through injury.

It was a role he clearly relished.

“As a captain, and with James out, I felt I had to step my game up and lead the men around,” he said.

“Obviously I did that with the points polling when I captain.”

Eccleston is yet to commit to another season with the Tigers but the chance to win back-to-back medals is another incentive for the 32-year-old.

“I need something to give me that little extra motivation and now that I have won this I’m thinking if I can win it this year why can’t I win it next year,” he said.

“I just need that one little thing to spark me along.”

It is the second year in a row that a Tigers player has been named the best player in Group Nine after James Luff’s big win last year.

Eccleston is now theseventh Gundagai player to earn the Weissel Medal, joining Peter Kennedy (1974), Pat Smith (1978), George Ashby (1986), Peter McDonald (2003), Patrick Clark (2006),Smart (2013) and Luff on the honour board.

Eccleston and Luff were joined by teammates Phil Latu and Blake Dunn in the Team of the Year.

The star studded outfit also includedFoley, Usaia O’Sullivan, Robbie Byatt, Jack Lyons, Nathan Rose, McCarthy, Hayden Jeans, Aaron Slater andDave Cowhan.

Outgoing Young mentor Neil Thorman was named as Coach of the Year.

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Boardrider win for North-West team in state battle

CELEBRATION TIME: The North-West Boardriders after their win on Saturday in the Nudie Australian Boardriders Battle.
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The North-West Boardriders won their first Nudie Australian Boardriders Battle crown in an exciting finish over South Arm Boardriders on Saturday.

Tasmania’s top four boardrider clubs headed south following last week’s postponement at Scamander, with the Tasmanian qualifying event held atCalverts Beach on South Arm.

North-West Boardriders’Zoe Gray got off to a flyer with an excellent first ride in the first women’s heat defeating 2016 open women’s state champion and 1996 world junior champion Dara Penfold.

This seemed to rattle the SABR team who faulted in several other heats.

But they still remained in the race through the final in the team’s event.

When Hamish Renwick hit the surf as SABR’S power surfer it appeared they could hold on for their fourth victory.

However, time and a high scoring ride eluded Renwick and NWBR scraped home.

NWBR were well served by Mark Cadle, Zeb Critchlow, junior Shae Cadle, Liam Viney and Matt Gaby.

Their club will now represent Tasmania in the national finals at Newcastle on February 17-19.

The Tasmanian event was the third in the 2017 Nudie Australian Boardrider Battle Series.

The series moves to northern New South Wales at Yamba on October 29.

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Anna Meares retires from cycling

The most decorated cyclist in Australian Olympic history, two-time Olympic gold medallist Anna Meares, has announced her retirement from the sport.
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Meares, 33, enjoyed an international career spanning 15 years, which included four Olympic Games and six Olympic medals and saw her become the only individual Australian athlete to medal at four consecutive Games.

Meares also won 11 world titles, the most by a female cyclist. She won 35 national titles and five gold medals at Commonwealth Games.

“I am really proud of my longevity, also proud of the level of high consistency in my performances and results during my career,” Meares said in a statement released by Cycling Australia.

“It is hard to close this chapter, because it is a bloody big one, but I am really excited about the doors opening in to the next chapter of my life.”

Meares’ achievements are even more incredible in light of the life-threatening injuries she suffered in a race crash, including a fractures in her neck, just months out from the the 2008 Olympics in Beijing.

Meares said she would most like to be remembered for her “resilience and strength”.

“I am really proud I have stuck around for as long as I have and while some people think I have made it look easy, I had to work so hard to stay on top.

“And I have been challenged extensively throughout my career and I have thoroughly enjoyed all of those challenges.

“I feel that I have grown with each experience and they have left me a better athlete, a better person.”

Cycling Australia CEO, Nicholas Green OAM, paid tribute to Meares upon her announcement.

“Anna’s contribution to the sport of cycling is immeasurable, and whether on or off the bike, Anna exemplified the utmost professionalism and respect for the sport and her peers,” he said.

“Her results at the Olympic, world championship and Commonwealth level are second to none and is a tribute to her hard work, dedication and commitment to excellence.

“Also the resilience shown by Anna as she faced repeated challenges throughout her career epitomised her strength of character and truly inspired the nation.

“While the trademark Meares stare, speed, power and victories will be sorely missed in velodromes across Australia and throughout the world, Anna has left a legacy on the sport that will be felt for years to come.

“Quite simply, the world of cycling is stronger because of Anna Meares, not poorer because of her retirement.

“We wish Anna all the best and look forward to her remaining with the sport in Australia to nurture and mentor our next generation of cyclists.”

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Hat tip at tidy towns

STAND-OUT: Board member Narelle Edwards with daughter, Scout Gallagher, 2, at the Beechworth Food Co-op, which took out a Tidy Towns award. Picture: ELENOR TEDENBORG
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BEECHWORTH’Sstoryof recoveryafter its supermarketburned down has moved audience members to tearsat theKeep Victoria Beautiful Tidy Towns awards.

The town’s post-fire initiatives won the community government partnerships category at Saturday’sceremony at Horsham.

Tidy Towns committee member Iris Mannik said the year’s events in Beechworth had made an impact, particularly for groups hailing from large areaslike the Mornington Peninsula.

“I talkedabout how the shire would get the elderly ringing saying they couldn’tget their shopping without the Lions Club,” she said.

“I talked about how Beechworth plumbing moved out of their area–it wasbeyond what happened on the night.It touched people and they asked to hear more about it.”

Mrs Mannik said the Beechworth Food Co-op also claimed a category –environmental sustainability.

“It’ssupporting our local foods andour growers,” she said.

“The co-op has little footprint and is a whole food education program.

“Now too, because they’ve grown to be bigger than thoughtpossible, you don’t have to necessarily join as a member to get involved.

“The fact you can go to their seed bank, to me, is wonderful because we’re going to save our heritage goods.”

Keep Australia Beautiful Victoria chief executive Sabina Wills said the North East took out multiple accolades over hundreds of entries from across the state.

“I was particularly impressed with Indigo Shire’s entries this year,” she said.

“The Beechworth Food Co-Operative continues to stand out and we were also inspired by the communities involvement in assisting others when their supermarket was closed.”

“The Wooragee Primary School Bush Fire Recovery Program is a wonderful example of educating children on sustainability.”

Mrs Mannik said Wooragee Primary School was recognised for itsefforts to restore 97 hectaresof bush.

“Wooragee won the highly commended in that category and the most delightful thing happened –they won the lucky door prize,” she said.

“Rutherglen got the highly commended intheclean beach and waterway for the Rutherglen park project.

“I think we represented the Indigo Shire well.”

Horsham was named tidiest in Victoria for the second year in a row.

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Queensland carers working hours equivalent to three full-time jobs

Carers Queensland’s Quality of Life report highlighted the amount of strain unpaid carers are under, as National Carers Week kicked-off on Sunday. Photo: SUPPLIED ZZZAs National Carers Week kicked off on Sunday, a new report has revealed just how much of a challenge unpaid Queensland carers face every week.
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Carers Queensland’s Quality of Life report takes an annual snapshot of the lives of those caring for loved ones who have disabilities, illnesses, chronic conditions or who are frail aged.

Of the 494 respondents, 80 per cent of unpaid family carers said they were working more hours per week than an average full-time worker.

Almost half of unpaid Queensland carers said they worked 120 hours or more per week providing care for their loved one.

“I am astonished,” Carers Queensland President Jim Toohey said.

“I was in the meeting when the figures were first released, I asked staff to go back and check.

“There are carers out there, particularly those who have to attend to loved ones through the night, who are putting in hours equivalent to working three full-time jobs every week.

“This is why many carers are fatigued, burnt out, and quite simply at breaking point.”

Wynnum carer Kerry Singh has been caring for her son, 11-year-old Aidan, all his life after he was born with only half of a working heart.

Aidan has reduced exercise tolerance, can only walk short distances and has spent a significant portion of his life in a wheelchair.

Ms Singh used to care for her son 100-120 hours per week, however in the last few years the workload has eased to about 60 hours.

Ms Singh said there were gaps within the support network for Queensland’s unpaid carers, particularly for those in a similar position to her.

“To be honest for high-needs children there is enough resources and funding for those parents and carers,” she said.

“But for those who have needs, but not high needs, we slip through the cracks.

“We don’t qualify for any help or services and the only break I get is when both twins go to camp for three days once a year.”

Ms Singh said she used to take Aidan to hospital three times per week for blood tests and said the parking costs were “ridiculous”.

“We need more funding towards medicine, equipment and parking,” she said.

Unpaid carers are vital to Queensland and the entire country.

If all unpaid carers across Australia stopped fulfilling their caring role, it would cost the country $60.3 billion per year to replace those services.

“It’s clear that Australia counts on carers, so this National Carers Week we want to show carers just how much they count,” Mr Toohey said.

​”We always need to support those who receive the least, but contribute the most.”

National Carers Week 2016 in Australia is October 16-22.

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Man and boy, 9, rescued from burning car wreck at Yeoval

A man and his nine-year-old son had a lucky escape when a passing motorist dragged them out of their burning car wreck in the central west of NSW on Saturday.
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The driver and his young passenger were rescued only moments before the vehicle was engulfed by flames and destroyed.

NSW Police said the pair were driving in Yeoval, south of Dubbo, when their 4WD swerved off the road, hitting a tree and bursting into flames.

A passing motorist stopped and smashed a window of the burning car to rescue the boy from the front passenger seat before returning to rescue the driver, a 44-year-old man.

NSW Ambulance paramedics assisted the injured man and child at the scene before the pair was flown to Sydney for further treatment.

The child is recovering at The Children’s Hospital at Westmead while his father is at Westmead Hospital where he is in a stable condition.

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‘Constantly in my mind’: Michael Clarke reflects on Phillip Hughes

Michael Clarke and wife Kyly at Phillip Hughes’ funeral. Michael Clarke at Phillip Hughes’ funeral.
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Best mates: former Australian captain Michael Clarke and Phillip Hughes out in the middle together in 2013.

Former Australian cricket captain Michael Clarke has revealed he did not have time to properly grieve for his mate Phillip Hughes and continues to think of him constantly two years after his death.

Writing in his new autobiography, Clarke admits he was under pressure to keep playing and did not pause to process Hughes’ sudden death and its impact on him.

“Nothing has been quite right since Hughesy,” he wrote in his book, My Story.

“I can see that now. I’ve gone through good moments at times, even such career highs as winning the World Cup and winning a Test match at Lord’s. But throughout it all, there was something not quite right with me, and I couldn’t put my finger on it. Maybe it was too obvious. Or too frightening to face. I never grieved.

“One minute I was at war with Cricket Australia, with the selectors and the high-performance manager, and the next minute the world came to an end. But then Hughesy’s funeral was behind us, CA was anxious to get the Test series with India going, and the world started spinning again.”

Clarke thought of Hughes as a younger brother and was a pallbearer at his funeral in December 2014.

Details about Hughes’ death were heard in a coronial inquiry in Sydney last week with findings to be handed down on November 4.

Clarke recalled the Australian team was under pressure to play the Adelaide Test match just days after saying goodbye to Hughes.

“Unanimously, we want to play the Adelaide Test match as a tribute to Hughesy and for his family, but the timing has to be right,” he wrote. “Eventually an agreement is struck to begin the match on 9 December, six days after the funeral. In retrospect, most of us would agree that it is still too soon.”

The former captain revealed he launched himself into training for the 2015 World Cup without stopping to grieve.

“Throughout all that, I never give myself time to grieve for my mate,” he wrote. “I’m thinking about Hughesy 24/7, but my mind hasn’t been able to stop and take it all in. I’m still half-expecting a text from him. His number is in my phone. He’s still there, in a corner of my mind.”

Clarke famously went on to steer Australia to a World Cup victory but recalled that throughout that time, “I have Hughesy constantly in my mind.”

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