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Last Saturday morning, when the sportsfans of the Pineapple State’s attention was torn between the Champions Racing series at Randwick, and the outstanding smorgusboard menu of footy, golf, netball and cricket on offer over the weekend, the Queensland Minister for Racing – a non-punting, non racegoing property investor and pretend unionist named Grace Grace – slipped out a press release announcing that after an an independent, merit-based selection process she had appointed a well-respected Queensland businessman named Steven Wilson to the role of Interim Chairman of Racing Queensland, the body that runs all forms of racing in the state.
This is press release that the Minister issued.
How exactly the ‘independent, merit-based’ process was conducted is an absolute mystery, but what we do know is thanks to the highly-respected racing industry journalist John Lingard’s website letsgohorseracing.com.au is that a firm named Eden Ritchie Recruitment twice put out advertisements for expressions of interest for the senior positions.
And this is where it gets weird, because the first advertisement for expressions of interest was put out in August last year, but Eden Ritchie recruitment for reasons presently unknown attempted to remove it from the internet and bury it.
Better men and women have tried and failed however to pull the wool over Archie’s eyes, and we have been able to retrieve a copy of the advertisement. The image quality is however, through no fault of our own, incredibly poor.
The next advertisement for expressions of interests was put out over the Christmas period, when the majority of Queenslanders are either on holiday or waiting for them to begin, and no-one is looking for a job or reading the newspaper.
Strangely enough – or not, whichever way you want to look at it – the expressions of interest closed on the first day after the Xmas/New Year break, the 4th of January 2016, when most folk were still at the beach.
Why, if the State Government were truly interested in recruiting from a wide field of applicants who had the ability and the drive to revive Queensland racing, would they advertise the roles when the vast majority of the outstanding potential applicants were on holidays enjoying their end of year break?
Simple answer – because the fix was in.
In a minute I will tell you exactly why.
But first I have to take a Downfall Creek.