Before the introduction of Country Racing, all northern clubs operated under the ruling of district bred racing, which restricted the racing fields in the country. On lifting these conditions it enabled existing trainers to extend their participation in taking their horses to the country; one of these trainers was Albany’s Dixie Solly. His dedication to Country Racing resulted in him being appointed president of the Country Racing Association. He was responsible for the many improvements adopted, mainly freight subsidy, jockey subsidy as well as many other benefits. He had a wonderful theory — if a horse was fit it should be racing, thus the great support he gave race clubs. I can assure you that all northern clubs awaited anxiously his nomination form. Apart from his support with horses he was a great supporter of northern clubs. He was the first to offer assistance with track maintenance and social activities in the region. Busy bees were a regular occurrence and the first to offer assistance together with his staff was Dixie; apart from horses to train he always had several jockeys, stable hands and miscellaneous workers. All his staff, from what I witnessed, were all fed and looked after extremely well when you take into consideration he used to have up to six horses per race and did not miss a race meeting in the north. You can imagine his effort by the time he had returned to his base stables in Port Hedland with a truck load of horses after competing in the last race on the program. His horses were his livelihood and he treated them the same, kindly and passionately — like his country family. His contribution to the Country Racing Association was acknowledged by his life membership for his continued contribution, which was immense as he understood and experienced the difficulties and expenditure incurred in supporting clubs from Pingrup to Marble Bar every season. I am sure all northern clubs would agree with the support received enabling their ability to promote professional race meetings for the benefit of trainers and owners and country racing. When you take into consideration the presentation a trainer must do to enable his participation to support the North West Race Round, it was an incredible mission. Thank you, Dixie, for your wonderful contribution. Mr Solly died on January 28 this year, he was 81.