• Entrants in the Fashionista on the Field.

    Entrants in the Fashionista on the Field.

  • Entrants pose for the camera

    Entrants pose for the camera

  • Cassandra and Glenn Austin came back to her home town for the festivities

    Cassandra and Glenn Austin came back to her home town for the festivities

  • Judy Hayden and Trish Sutton, Adaminaby's most generous hostesses

    Judy Hayden and Trish Sutton, Adaminaby's most generous hostesses

  • Jan and Tom Foley, Sir Peter Cosgrove, John  Rudd and Lady Cosgrove after the presentation of AJC Life Membership

    Jan and Tom Foley, Sir Peter Cosgrove, John Rudd and Lady Cosgrove after the presentation of AJC Life Membership

  • Winner of Best Dressed Man ......ready for a buggy ride to town?

    Winner of Best Dressed Man ......ready for a buggy ride to town?

  • Charles and Mary Russell, for whom the race Russell's Run is named to acknowledge their contribution to the district

    Charles and Mary Russell, for whom the race Russell's Run is named to acknowledge their contribution to the district

  • Sam Armytage at the photo-op screen for sponsors Birdsnest of Cooma

    Sam Armytage at the photo-op screen for sponsors Birdsnest of Cooma

  • The winners of best group category show Sam how pleased they are.

    The winners of best group category show Sam how pleased they are.

  • Julie Bird drove her ute wearing this dress scrunched under the dash to then win best themed dress.

    Julie Bird drove her ute wearing this dress scrunched under the dash to then win best themed dress.

  • Sam Armytage.

    Sam Armytage.

  • A best dressed colour co-ordinated couple

    A best dressed colour co-ordinated couple

  • Entrants in the Classic Lady on the Field

    Entrants in the Classic Lady on the Field

  • My pick for the Fashionista on the Field.... but she didn't win......

    My pick for the Fashionista on the Field.... but she didn't win......

  • Ann Miners and Lady Cosgrove

    Ann Miners and Lady Cosgrove

  • A best dressed filly, Georgina Kingston with Lady Cosgrove

    A best dressed filly, Georgina Kingston with Lady Cosgrove

  • Lady Cosgrove and a winning best dressed girl Bridie Harriott

    Lady Cosgrove and a winning best dressed girl Bridie Harriott

  • Entrants in the best dressed little girl category

    Entrants in the best dressed little girl category

  • Boys from the big smoke and their blow-up toys.

    Boys from the big smoke and their blow-up toys.

  • Toni McInerney and Toby Durrance

    Toni McInerney and Toby Durrance

  • Mick Batchelor and Ron Dowell sweat it out for the Light Horse feature ride.

    Mick Batchelor and Ron Dowell sweat it out for the Light Horse feature ride.

  • Posing with the punters.

    Posing with the punters.

  • Glynese and Charlie Armytage with Lib and Mac Armytage

    Glynese and Charlie Armytage with Lib and Mac Armytage

  • Sam Armytage and Sophie Hull

    Sam Armytage and Sophie Hull

  • Sam Armytage and Casandra Austin

    Sam Armytage and Casandra Austin

  • Valmai Mylan

    Valmai Mylan

  • In costume for the sesquicentenary meeting Jenny Deudney, Chris Dawe and Elizabeth Thatcher.

    In costume for the sesquicentenary meeting Jenny Deudney, Chris Dawe and Elizabeth Thatcher.

  • A celebratory parade for the sesquicentenary meeting

    A celebratory parade for the sesquicentenary meeting

  • Governor General Sir Peter Cisgrove

    Governor General Sir Peter Cisgrove

  • The official party.....

    The official party.....

  • A return to the track for former jockey Maureen Turland who fell at the turn 30 years ago

    A return to the track for former jockey Maureen Turland who fell at the turn 30 years ago

  • At the Adaminaby Races you bring your own shade

    At the Adaminaby Races you bring your own shade

  • They came......they checked the odds and scooped the Fashions on the Field with their own boxed trifecta.

    They came......they checked the odds and scooped the Fashions on the Field with their own boxed trifecta.

  • The quaintly named Meekatharra Verandah at the Adaminaby race course before the crowds arrived.

    The quaintly named Meekatharra Verandah at the Adaminaby race course before the crowds arrived.

  • The Russell family today with Rory, Maurice and Carmel and daughter Coral and Kara Griffin-Warwicke with grandmother Gwen Russell in front.

    The Russell family today with Rory, Maurice and Carmel and daughter Coral and Kara Griffin-Warwicke with grandmother Gwen Russell in front.

The Adaminaby Races 150th Anniversary Meeting

22 November 2014

The Adaminaby Races is an annual adventure into the high country where sweeping plains, morning mists and high country hospitality combine with an influx of 4000 plus to the barely 250 who live in this famous town that was once somewhere else. And in 2014 the vice-regal imprimatur was firmly applied to this unique event that has 150 years of tales to tell, memories to remind and locals determined to preserve their history.

Sir Peter and Lady Cosgrove know how to get among the people  - they’ve been doing it for as long as I’ve known them and admired their disarming and genuinely friendly manner - and on this new vice-regal adventure are intent on meeting as many Aussies as they can. As guests of honour at this meeting showing they too can suffer the endearing fact that there is not a leaf, branch, tree or cluster of vegetation to shelter under at the admirable Adaminaby race track, so you have to bring your own shade! Or head for the famous grandstand used for more than a few movies or the quaintly named Meekatharra Verandah to gaze wistfully, a cool ale in hand, across the naked plains to the distant Bolaro Station, and a river.

The day is one to demonstrate your resourcefulness with copious quantities of liquid refreshments trundled in from the carpark, the quick erection of shelter with tents, gazebos and marquees sprouting up and food, lots of food, unwrapped and shared as the bar did a steady trade. The ladies of the town dressed to impress with many in costumes they probably wished could be loosened or stripped off to their pretty underthings that might have been not just more comfortable but more fun and the out of towners came to win the prizes the AJC -that’s the Adaminaby Jockey Club and regional sponsors – had on offer for a mix of judging categories.
Lady Cosgrove and Ann Miners sat stoically in the full sun to judge the best dressed boy, girl and fillies before common sense prevailed and someone brought a large brolly to the judging table as former local Sam Armytage and Cynthia Bryson judged the next sections of Fashionista on the Field, Classic Lady on the Field and Best Lady’s hat. Interesting results!

My involvement was not just to get the photos but to judge best dressed man, couple, single or pair in a themed outfit and best group with Sam Armytage and hopefully a consensus of selections. Being aided by the audience of knowledgeable locals behind me making known their preferences, not so ‘sotto voce’, was all in good fun.
And rather than risk a mutiny from the blow –up hose riding fraternity from the big smoke the sight of Sam Armytage among them for their prize presentation assured it was the right decision for them to win the best group.

I love country hospitality, the quiet, the air and listening to the stories. So armed with a bigger than usual file of photos I’m going to write another story about Adaminaby, to introduce you to the high country where I used to race through all those years ago to take the kids skiing at Selwyn, and now find appeals for a lot of other reasons, and they ski in Japan!  

It was a race day to remember that continued to the local pub where the biggest trading day of the year had the publican and staff making the most of this opportunity and everyone was having a good old fashioned country good time. The detritus of that good time waking up with the mooing cows, bleating sheep and the sunshine the next morning from a variety of ‘camping’ spots around the town. Another fine tradition just like the races.