This is how the trot driver who has been convicted of the criminal charge of facilitating match-fixing and had been banned from the harness racing industry for life Bart Cockburn fixed the Sure Products Qualifying B Pace run at Albion Park on Saturday the 5th of November 2016.
It was dead simple, and involved only 2 or perhaps 3 drivers to make it a success.
The two drivers definitely involved were Matthew Neilson and Nathan Dawson.
Now that Detective-Inspector Mick Dowie has been brought over to replace Mark Ainsworth – the bloke whose brother played in the pack with corrupt cop Tony Murphy’s son in the mighty Valleys Diehards Super A’s Premiership winning team of 1983 while I played in the back line with the son of officers Buckley and Lawrence, and the sexually abused (although then we didn’t know it) step-son of a pedophile named Rod Boult – is on the case Dawson and Neilson are done for. Totally and utterly f*cked.
Their careers are over as soon as Dowie elects to push the trigger.
I’m not giving anything up by saying so, because no doubt the ace detective has been tapping their phones and bugging their for the better part of a year, and if they are too stupid to have realised it then they’ve already given themselves up, and good.
The scumbags deserve the f*cking they are going to get too, because the corrupt pieces of sh*t have been robbing innocent harness loving sportsfans like you and me blind, and despoiling the sport that we love so badly that only a complete change in management and direction will enable it to survive.
When Dowie hits the button and reveals the full extent of the race-fixing scandal the people who have been in charge of harness racing while this trio of Dawson, Neilson and Cockburn and many, many more have been perpetrating their crimes must be treated in the same way in which the officials who ran greyhound racing knowing all about live baiting and turning a blind eye were treated.
With cold contempt.
They must all be banished from the industry forthwith, never to return, and if that means that some blokes I’m really fond of have to walk the plank well so be it. That’s life in the fast lane, or the passing lane, or the shady crooked lane, or whatever you want to call the dark shadowy paths that good people who have lost their way trod while they tread all over people who once called them their friends.
The folk I’m talking about have redemption at their finger tips. A cross road has been reached, and as unlikely as it that it has been built by a mad blogger and a cop Commissioner in waiting who have no history of holding hands, them’s the facts and the choice now lies in the good people who have done nothing’s hands.
Do you keep riding the multiple Group 1 winner who smashes them in 2 and 3 horse races due to the inequities of their self-managed handicap scale, or do you summon the inner gambler within and throw your lot in with the new boys in town approaching the main street from different directions?
The choice is yours fellas and fillies, but you have to make it here and you have to make it now because this bullsh*t has reached the Rubicon line and there ain’t no sitting on the fence and there ain’t not turning back. You have to pick a side, and you only get one chance. Choose wisely is my advice.
You buy your ticket, you take the ride.
Cockburn, Neilson, Dawson are absolutely in on the fix.
Chantal Turpin and her husband Peter McMullen are too.
I reckon there are more – in fact I am certain of it – but it’s not evident in this particular rigged race so let’s just stick to pointing the fingers at the drivers and the trainer who are so obviously part of the crew.
Here’s the field.
Now turn on the race recording at the top of the page.
I’ll talk you through it.
The mobile flies, and they’re off.
From the one spot Shane Graham on the 2nd fave Judah Ben Hur doesn’t look too keen, and comes out moderately.
Pete McMullen driving the favourite Sicilian Slumber, trained by his missus Chantal and starting from the 2 is even less keen. He pulls the reins back and puts his pacer in a stranglehold, and eases right out of the early fight.
Beaudine Bill driven by Gary Whittaker comes out fast and Kim’s Boy from the 5 driven by Matt Elkins does too. They look like crossing easily but just as they are about to both drivers suddenly and quite inexplicably ease, and Shane Graham on Judah Ben Hur just slips back into the lead even though he was doing nothing to try to hold it.
There’s a reason for all this, and you will see it soon.
So Graham kicks up and Judah Ben Hur holds the lead.
Modern Edition, trained by Stephen Cini – who features as the trainer of a McMullen driven runner in one of the guaranteed trifecta pool fixes – hold the leaders back from its trailing number 8 draw. The roughie Kim’s Boy lands the death, and Beaudine Bill scores its back, but it’s what’s going on behind those four horses that matters.
No driver is trying to do anything.’
Pete McMullen is swinging like Tarzan on the 2nd favorite Sicilian Slumber, and after wrestling his horse into the ground and holding his one off the fence line he lands the 1-2, but behind him it seems like the other half of the field is in some kind of crazed race to run last, and until Bart Cockburn’s horse East Emperor spears through from it’s second line draw it seems as if the other drivers are about to pull themselves right out of their carts.
The next bit is weird though, or at least it seemed so at the time before the uninitiated learnt the real game.
Cockburn quickly gets Eastern Emperor through the other runners whose drivers are trying to get them to stop and do a Russian folk dance and he has the chance to pop sweetly into the running line, but for reason at the time seemingly unfathomable he instead elects to steer his horse into the suicide spot 3 back the fence.
As soon as Cockburn gets his spot the drivers of the other horses remember that they’re in a race not at the beach, and after a bit of tug and slug at a snail’s pace the field finally assume their rightful positions.
Meanwhile up front they are hitting the mile mark and everything looks tickety boo, but then suddenly Nathan Dawson pulls his $16 shot Surface To Air out of a sweet trailing spot 1 out and 3 back and rushes around to the death. Given the average quality of the horse he is driving it seems like madness, but there’s a method to his madness.
Nothing much happens for the next 800 metres.
Then we hit the 800 metre mark and Shane Graham decides to amp up the tempo on the leader which is off because no other horse is pressuring him and he could just hold back until they do and then sit and sprint. This is a sh*t grade qualifying race remember, the equivalent of of perhaps a BM 65 at the gallops or a grade 5 at the dogs; but Graham shoots up the speed regardless.
Pete McMullen on the favorite Sicilian Slumber takes off and starts coming around them 3-wide but nowhere near as fast as you would expect.
In fact I swear that I see McMullen – who is an expert horseman – pull a little dipsy doo with a left, down, up, right quick tug of the reigns that throws his horse off balance and causes it to lug out and drift wide and lose ground.
Funnily enough when I slow the video replay down enough I see Grant Dixon on Strawb’s Ideal Act – who is coming around the outside of Sicilian Slumber – do the same than thing too.
Am I sight impaired or delusional? Did both those horses lug out sharply just as they were about to come into the race and perhaps swoop around the death seat horse?
Of course they did.
Nathan Dawson on Surface to Air tries as hard as he can from about the 300 to the 200 to restrain his horse and let Modern Edition on his inside out, but the leader is starting to tire and he can’t create enough of a gap, so he changes tactics and starts shaking the reins madly and hitting the right side of his gig hard enough to make it look like he is flogging his horse but at the same time he is sneakily pulling the right reign tighter when he should be tugging the left, and as a result Surface To Air drifts about a horse and a half or so off the track.
The leader’s obviously gone but it’s still a length in front as they hit the point of the turn and all Matthew Neilson on Modern Edition needs to do is hold its position on the back of Judah Ben Hur and in a matter of metres he will be hitting the sprint lane and be off and gone and it will be goodnight nurse.
Instead though he hooks his horse around the tiring leader into the gap that Nathan Dawson has just deliberately left him and Bart Cockburn – the bloke Neilson and Dawson have conspired with to fix the race – shoots up the sprint lane and that’s all she wrote, although for a few strides Neilson looked worried that his horse might kick so almost imperceptibly unless like a steward should be you are looking, he stops driving his horse properly but quickly starts again when he sees Eastern Emperor has drawn a half length in font and is home.
Matthew Neilson’s not a real good crim though, or even a half-decent fairly ordinary one because he totally and utterly f*cks up and gives the game away, and it’s there on the video replay for everyone to see.
Take the film back to the point of the turn and then hit go.
Watch Neilson and Neilson only.
His is the horse in the Hawthorn colours on the fence behind the leader.
He pulls out and goes around but then at the top of the straight he does something that is blatantly obvious.
Neilson turns his head to the left to see if Cockburn and Eastern Emperor have got through on the run that he left them inside.
There is only one reason that he would do that in a race that we know now was fixed.
Because he is a race fixer too.
And so is Dawson.
And McMullen too.
Mick Dowie’s going to nail them all.
Don’t you worry about that.