The NSW Standardbred Owners Association Bonus Race Series is under way for 2018, with the support of two eager young ambassadors. 

Madi Young and Blake Micallef are doing the honours this year, having been selected from the ranks of participants in the recent Rising Stars Series. Madi was Rising Stars champion narrowly defeating Cameron Hart in the point score, with Blake Micallef a respectable fifth.

Last year’s winner Ellen Rixon acted as ambassador for all twelve bonus series meetings, but the commitment was too much for one person. “It made good sense to appoint one ambassador for Northern NSW meetings, and another for the Southern region”, said NSWSOA President Michael Brown. “Both young drivers will wear special colours, and have aligned themselves with charities of their choice”.

Blake Micallef

Blake Micallef

Blake Micallef will endeavour to raise funds for Beyondblue, and Madi for the Make A Wish Foundation.The series began at Albury on August 17th, and embraces twelve meetings right through to December, with four designated races on each programme.

Madi and Blake hope to drive in most of the forty eight races, and will make a personal donation of $50 with any winning drives. This will be matched on a personal basis by Michael Brown and Daniel Cordina, HRNSW will follow suit, as will the NSWSOA and Committee members of the host Club.

Madi Young

Madi Young

I’m sure local trainers will do their best to find drives for the Rising Stars, and you can bet Madi and Blake will be desperate to drive winners. Blake had a horror start to the series on August 17th, when the first of his two drives was involved in a scrimmage which resulted in his being catapulted from the sulky. He was unhurt, but the Doctor stood him down from his second commitment.


Following is the schedule for the 2018 Nick Dewar Memorial Bonus Race Series.

Albury 17/8/18
Tamworth 30/8/18
Bankstown 31/8/18
Bathurst 5/9/18
Dubbo 9/9/18
Penrith 13/9/18
Wagga 28/9/18
Menangle 16/10/18
Newcastle 26/10/18
Young 30/10/18
Parkes 14/11/18
Goulburn 10/12/18

Blake Micallef will act as ambassador at Bathurst, Dubbo, Wagga, Young and Parkes, with Madi at all other meetings.

The managing owner or the first named owner of winning horses, must be a financial member of NSWSOA to receive a $500 cash bonus.

HRNSW will contribute a $500 bonus certificate if the winning horse is eligible for the Breeder’s Challenge, and that the owners are paid up members of NSWSOA.

Join the association by visiting website

For the bonus races owners have to be a financial member prior to nomination of the horse for the bonus races.