Club Stalwart retires with plenty of long service & honour
After some 18 Years of service to the Townsville Turf Club, with an amazing 15 years serving with distinction as President, Mr Alan Parry has chosen to retire as President and from the committee of the Townsville Turf Club. In doing so Mr Parry has handed the Presidents role over to long standing, Senior Committee Member Mr Kevin O’Keefe. Mr Parry oversaw many great changes and enhancements to not only the operations of the Club, but also the ever changing challenges and environment of Racing in Queensland during his tenure as President. Mr Parry was instrumental in driving the new found success of the Club’s now infamous Winter Racing Carnival and Townsville Cup Day, an event that has grown significantly during the last 15 years to be now regarded as one of the biggest and most popular race days in regional Australia.
Mr Parry not only drove the growth and excitement of the Townsville Winter Racing Carnival, but he oversaw many facets of the Club’s Operations from Finance to Programming to Promotions, with his depth of knowledge and enthusiasm for the ongoing success of the Club and racing never wavering. Over many years Mr Parry endured a sometimes vicious and well documented battle with Racing Queensland’s long serving Chairman Bob Bentley, who’s iron fisted and somewhat controversial style of controlling racing in the state met some staunch resistance for many years from Club’s, none more so than the Townsville Turf Club and in particular Mr Parry. Mr Parry was very vocal in his fight for the Club’s rights and its future under the threat of such controversial rationalisation and control of Racing in the state from the Bentley lead regime, which was scorned by many Race Clubs and industry participants throughout the state.
Mr Parry provided the Club with not just many hours of dedicated time over many years, but also alongside his brother John Parry, both were instrumental in developing and sponsoring the richest race for juveniles in North Queensland, the time honoured $100,000 Parry Nissan Great Northern 2 Year Old Classic. This prestigious race was originally developed in conjunction with the Sunstate Yearling Sales and has continued under the Parry Nissan sponsorship since its inception for 21 years. Joining Alan Parry in his retirement from the Townsville Turf Club Committee will be his brother John Parry, who has served as a Committee Member of the Townsville Turf Club for 13 Years. During this time John Parry’s passion for racing never wavered, his enthusiasm and commitment for not only the Townsville Turf Club, but the entire racing industry in North Queensland. Along with his brother Alan, both gentleman are highly respected and appreciated throughout the entire Racing Industry. The support from the Parry brothers for Race Club’s across North Queensland is second to none and for this the industry as a whole pays tribute to them. Both Alan and John are confident that the tradition and prestige that comes with the Parry Nissan Great Northern 2 Year Old Classic will continue long into the future.
Both Alan and John Parry at the recent Townsville Turf Club AGM were bestowed with the honour of Life Membership of the Townsville Turf Club, in recognition for their many years of service and support on the Committee of the Club. At the Club’s AGM held in late September the Club also recognised the nucleus of the current Committee, which has remained stable and together for the last 18 years. A further four (4) of the current committee members alongside both Alan and John Parry, were also honoured with Life Membership to the Club for many years of service on the Townsville Turf Club Committee. They include the Club’s former Vice President John Rowlands (21 Years), current Honorary Treasurer Dino Di Bella (20 Years), current Chairman Kevin O’Keefe (18 Years) and Ross Donovan (16 Years). All of the above gentlemen along with Alan and John Parry, have served the Townsville Turf Club and North Queensland Racing with great distinction, honour and integrity. This group of gentleman have dedicated a total of 106 Years of service to racing in Townsville and North Queensland and for this we honour them.
Committee Members Honoured with Life Membership for their years of service to the TTC:
Outgoing President, Alan Parry (18 years), Incoming President, Kevin O’Keefe (18 Years), John Parry (13 years), Ross Donovan (16 years), current Honorary Treasurer, Dino Di Bella (20 Years) and former Vice President, John Rowlands (21 Years).