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Shellfish harvesting in Venus Bay angers residents, sparks fear of environmental damage

A study commissioned by Venus Bay residents found recreational harvesting of pipis was having a substantial impact on the beach. Photo: Eddie JimRenewed commercial shellfish harvesting along a popular Victorian beach has sparked fears of irreversible environmental damage and infuriated locals.
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The decision to allow commercial harvesting of pipis in Venus Bay in South Gippsland is controversial as the beach already attracts many “recreational” harvesters.

Recreational harvesting has proliferated in recent years causing tensions with residents who say many collectors ignore rules on daily catch limits, resulting in depleted stocks.

The Victorian National Parks Association has slammed commercial harvesting in Cape Liptrap Coastal Park, which includes Venus Bay, citing concerns that pipi numbers are in “serious decline”. The association is calling for a 12-month moratorium of commercial harvesting in Cape Liptrap.

Victorian National Parks Association marine and coastal co-ordinator Chris Smyth said too little was known about the impact of harvesting on pipi stocks.

“There needs to be a far more comprehensive and ongoing scientific monitoring program,” he said.

Mr Smyth said pipi harvesting should be banned entirely in the southern part of Venus Bay to protect the population.

Authorities maintain that commercial fishing of pipis has long been permitted in Venus Bay, and no new licenses have been issued. Only one commercial license holder is currently fishing in Venus Bay, according to a spokeswoman for the Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources.

But locals say it was only in summer that they first saw a commercial operator collecting large numbers of shellfish with a trolley and hessian bags.

A notice gazetted shortly before the November election specified areas in Venus Bay that were open to commercial harvesting.

A study commissioned by Venus Bay residents found recreational harvesting was having a substantial impact on the beach.

Marine ecologist and consultant Greg Parry, who conducted the study, also recommended closing sections of the Venus Bay beach off to harvesting at different times.

“The recreational harvesting had reduced the population in the fished area very significantly by about three quarters,” he said. “By opening the other part of the beach to commercial fishing they run the risk of causing the collapse of the pipi population on the whole beach.”

During the summer holiday period, fisheries officers uncovered  more than 150 “alleged offences” during inspections of pipi collectors in Venus Bay.

Recreational harvesters are subject to a two-litre limit in the region. The officers issued 15 infringement notices, 13 official warnings and 138 verbal warnings for minor offences.

In early December, a Melbourne man was allegedly caught in Venus Bay with more than 10 times the daily limit.

Friends of Venus Bay Peninsula president Mae Adams said up to 4000 people a day descended on the beach to harvest shellfish during peak summer holidays. “There’s been enormous pressure on the beach, particularly in the past five years,” she said.

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Blues book final berth

Brian Robinson
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SOUTH Waggabooked themselves a place in the grand final after a comprehensive win over Wagga City on the weekend.

The Blues hadn’t defeated the Cats all season, but had too much firepower at Robertson Oval on Sunday.

After posting 231 on the first day of the clash, the Blues rolled through the defending premier for 70.

In a sorry batting line upJosh Thompson (16) top scored for the Cats.

A blistering spell fromJake Hindmarshcaused most of the damage and the paceman took 7-26 off 13 overs.

He picked up seven of the Cats’ top eightbefore Mitch Sykes and Brian Robinson cleaned up the rest.

Blues captain Joel Robinson was once again impressed by his spearhead.

“Jake bowled really well and has bowled all year whether it be club or rep,” Robinson said.

“He had good help and I thought everyone that had the chance to bowl bowled well.

“It was a really good team performance in the field, but it means nothing unless we can back it up in a couple weeks time.”

The Blues set up the win with a solid batting display on Saturday.

After the Cats got on top early, South Wagga hit back from 4-58 with a 100-run partnership between Luke Gerhard and Mitch Sykes.

Gerhard justified his recall into the first grade team with a well-made 59 while Sykes scored 47 before becoming one of three Dom Alexander victims.

With solid contributions throughout the innings, Robinson was happy with how the Blues were able to recover their innings.

“I thought we had to work hard a couple of times with the bat but a really good partnership and good contributions down the end of the order helped us to the score we got,” Robinson said.

“It wasn’t one person’s big score but everyone which was really good.”

Just like last season South Wagga are the first team into the grand final, and will face Wagga City or Kooringal Colts in the decider.

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Take an amazing journey into grand design

RETREAT: This beautiful property perched on Barrengarry Mountain draws on design cues from structures not normally linked to homes.THE 2015 edition of Amazing Homes is nearing publication in what is the first of a format that will take in the entire South Coast.
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The award-winning magazine will feature 10 properties with wow factor, most of which are set in jaw-dropping locations.

From Kangaroo Valley the magazine features a property that is both art gallery and home. In fact, parts of the house itself could be considered a sculpture.

On the coast we take a look through an owner-designed modern house at Callala Beach. During the building phase this one was in the running for Australia’s Grand Designs TV series.

Back in the mountains and a spectacular property on Barrengarry Mountain throws up a visual conundrum for readers. You won’t know where to look first – the house or the view.

For those who remember the Jetsons, the magazine features a little something special from Narooma.

Amazing Homes is not only a chance to look through other people’s homes and gardens, it also highlights the work of the region’s architects, designers and builders.

South Coast Register general manager Rachael Thornett said she was proud of how the magazine had grown.

“Creating the magazine as a separate publication back in 2009 was a gamble but five years down the track it’s still growing strong,” she said.

In that time the publication has featured some of the Shoalhaven’s most prized properties and has itself been recognised by the industry, having been a recipient of a NSW Country Press award.

Mrs Thornett said part of the magazine’s appeal to advertisers was its broad reach.

“It goes in the Wednesday edition of the South Coast Register and it’s delivered to real estate offices, visitor information centres and advertisers,” she said.

“The whole product is also online, offering international exposure.”

Advertising opportunities in the magazine are still available, bookings close Wednesday. Phone 4421 9123 for details.

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LIVE: BBD grand final – Bendigo v Bendigo East

Bendigo and Bendigo East are fighting it out for the BBD division one title.7pm; All over here – Bendigo wins 102-83 to capture the 2015 flag.
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In final rink Bendigo’s Barry Anset defeated Brad Holland 27-19.

6:57pm: Third rink completed.

Bendigo’s Gary Carberry defeats Paul Moller 27-15.

6:54pm: One very passionate East supporter doing his best to keep his side’s spirits up.

6:51pm; 3 ends to go. Bendigo leads 101-80.

Going to be a big night at the Bendigo Bowls Club tonight.

The lads will be up and about celebrating a flag.

6:40pm: Bendigo hit triple figures. Lead 100-79 after 95 ends.

6:35pm: All sting gone out of the game.

6:33pm: Crowd thinning right out now.

Bendigo up 98-79 after 94 ends.

6:26pm: 2nd rink completed.

Bendigos Andrew Brown defeats David Keenan 29-21.

Score was 16-8 Browns way after tea.

6:21pm: 10 ends to go. Bendigo leads 95-75.

6:18pm: First rink is finished, Liam Crapper scores a win for East.

Crapper defeated Ian Ross 28-19.

Crapper scored the last 15 shots, including 5 on the final end.

momentum ebbed and flowed all throughout that contest.

6;11pm; Bendigo leads 92-66 after 84.

6:05pm: Anset 23-13 over Holland after 18 ends.

Bendigo leads 92-65 in what has become a one-sided grand final.

6:02pm: Carberry leads Moller 23-13 after 21.

Brown leads Keenan 27-17 after 22.

6:01pm: Bendigo lead 87-65 after 81.

5:59pm: Crappers rink working hard to get East back into it.

just picked up 4 shots on 23rd end to take 22-19 lead over Ross.

4 straight eds for Crapper in which they have picked up 9 shots.

5:55pm: Anset 22-13 up over Holland after 17.

Bendigo lead by at least 7 in 3 of the rinks.

5:52pm: Brown extends Bendigos lead, picking up 3 shots v Keenan on 21st end. He leads 26-17.

Bendigo 86-61 in front.

5:51pm: Crapper back within one of Ross, who leads 19-18.

Crapper won last 3 ends.

5:45pm: Brown leads Keenan23-17.

Carbery leads Moller 20-11.

Anset leads Holland 21-13.

Ross leads Crapper 19-17.

5:44pm: Bendigo leads 83-58 after 76 ends, so we are into the last quarter now.

5:40pm; 3 shots to Crapper on 21st end cuts deficit against Ross to 2.

Ross leads 19-17.

5:37pm: Moller wins 2nd rink in a row over Carbery, but still 20-11 behind.

5:36pm: Bit of a rowdy crowd here making for great spectacle.

5:34pm: Brown takes 2 more shots for Bendigo over Keenan.

Leads 23-16 after 19 ends.

Scores is 10-3 Browns way since tea,

Bendigo up and about. Lead 82-53.

5:31pm; Crappers rink on board for first time since tea.

They won 20th end, but trail Ross 19-14.

5:27pm: Brown out to 21-16 lead over keenan after 18.

Bendigo leads 80-52 after 70.

5:26pm: Easts Moller wins 18th end over Carbery, but trails 20-10.

5:25pm; 2 more shots to Anset to take 20-13 advantage over Holland.

Anset is 11-2 since tea. #biggameplayer

5:22pm: Bendigo up 77-52 after 67 and bolting away to flag.

5:20pm; Another shot to Ross, holds 19-13 lead over Crapper.

Ross 10-0 now since team

East need to send a few men back behind the ball to stem the tide.

5;17pm: Bendigo leads 76-51.

Game over I reckon. Cant see East getting back from here.

Its 35-8 since tea,

5:14pm: Barry Anset, I tip my hat to you. Great bowl under pressure.

Ansets rink takes 5 shos against Holland to lead 18-13.

Twice in last 15 minutes Bendigo have picked up 5 shots.

5:13pm; This feels like Bendigo 4 goals up and kicking with breeze.

5:11pm: Ross extends lead over Crapper to 18-13.

His rink now 9-0 since smoko. #steppedup

5:08pm: 3 shots for Carbery on 16th and low leads 17-9 over Moller.

This getting very dangerous for East now.

Bendigo leads 66-51 after 63.

20 ends been played since smoko, Bendigo scored 25-8.

5:07pm: Massive – Brown just scores 5 on 17th end to take 20-16 lead over Keenan.

Big moment in this grand final.

5:05pm: Holland pulls a shot back for East, now tied 13-13 with Anset after 13.

5:03pm: Bendigo got all the momentum here.

5:01pm: Another shot to Ross, now 16-13 up over Crapper.

Had trailed 13-9 at smoko.

4:59pm: Bendigo scored 16 to 7 since smoko.

Barry Anset tips his hat to an outstanding bowl.

4:56pm: Bendigo leads 57-50 after 59 ends.

4:54pm: Carbery 14-9 over Moller after 15.

Keenan 16-15 over Brown after 16.

Anset 13-12 over Holland after 12.

4:53pm: Another shot for Ross, now leads Crapper 15-13.

Ross is 6-0 since smoko.

4:46pm; Bendigo 54 leads East 49 after 55.

4:45pm: Holland and Anset tied 12-all.

Ian Ross has hit front against Liam Crapper. Leads 14-13.

4:44pm: Easts Moller picks up 3 shots on 14th end.

Trails Carberry 13-9 now.

4:41pm: Andrew Brown getting the crowd up and going. Just nailed a big bowl on the 15th end.

Brown-Keenan all tied up at 15 after 15 ends. Nice ring to it.

4:38pm: Easts Crapper leads Ross 13-11 after 14.

Overall Bendigo leads East 49-46 after 51.

4:36pm: Easts Holland leads Ansett 12-11 after 10.

4:35pm: Gary Carberry all over Paul Moller at moment, leads 13-6 after 13 ends.

4:34pm: Ian Ross getting Bendigo up and about, pumping the lads up.

4:33pm: Brown picks up shot on Keenan.

Keenan leads 15-14 after 14.

4:27pm: Going to be a big night and a mad Monday at one of these clubs.

4:25pm: East leads 46-44 after 47 ends appraochin halfway mark of game.

4:24pm: Ian Ross picks up shot for Bendigo on 13th end v Liam Crapper.

Crapper leads 13-10.

4:22pm: Love watching Easts Crackers Keenan go about his business.

Big bowl there from Crackers, picks up 2 shots on 13th end.

Leads Brown 15-13.

4:17pm: Simon Chisholm bowling for Bendigo with a foot injuy from a cricket game.

4:16pm: Word is the greens are running at 17 seconds.

Apparently thats very quick. Normally run at 14 to 14.5 seconds.

4:14pm: Righto, here we go, back into it.

East 43 leads Bendigo 41.

Reckon I may watch Crackerjack tonight after this.

4:05pm: Great variety of sandwiches served up at smoko.

Notice a few players enjoying a half-time beer. How good is bowls.

3:56pm: At smoko Bendigo 41 trails East 43 after 43 ends.

Brown 13 v Keenan 13 after 12.

Carberry 10 v Moller 6 after 11.

Anset 9 v Holland 11 after 8.

Ross 9 v Crapper 13 after 12.

3:51: Awesome atmosphere here at South.

Do yourself a favour and get down for a look.

Got a great game unfolding as we are about to break for ome smoko.

3:50pm: Bendigo East earlier defeated Inglewood 86-56 in the midweek pennant grand final.

Good start to the day for East.

3:47pm: Big crowd in at South for the grand final.

Heres the state of play:

Andrew Brown (13) v David Keenan (13).

Gary Carberry (10) v Paul Moller (5).

BarryAnset (9) v Brad Holland (11).

ian Ross (9) v Liam Crapper (13).

Bendigo 41 trails East 42 after 42 ends.

THE Bendigo Bowls Division premiership is up for grabs at South Bendigo as Bendigo and Bendigo East lock horns.

PREVIEW: PENNANT PRIZE ON LINE FOR BENDIGO, EAST

SATURDAY’S GRAND FINAL RESULTS

CHLOE STEWART BOWLS AGAINST WORLD’S BEST

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Qantas 747 lands at Albion Park: readers’ photos

Qantas 747 lands at Albion Park: readers’ photos Picture courtesy of Paul Heyman
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Bail denied for man accused of multiple AVO breaches

A SOUTH NOWRA man who allegedly contravened or attempted to contravene apprehended violence orders 17 times in a nine-day period has been refused bail in Nowra Local Court.
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Malcolm James Stewart, 35, of Isabel Close, appeared before Magistrate Dr Gabriel Fleming charged with nine counts of contravening an apprehended violence order and eight counts of attempting to contravene an apprehended violence order.

Police allege the offences occurred at Silverwater in Sydney between January 28 and February 5 this year.

Stewart did not enter any pleas to the charges.

He had previously pleaded guilty to destroying or damaging property, a timber internal door, on January 15 at Nowra, assault occasioning actual bodily harm and with contravening an apprehended violence order.

He pleaded not guilty to never holding a licence to drive on the road, driver/rider state a false name and with using a vehicle with number plate not correctly fixed.

He was also charged with assault occasioning actual bodily harm, using an offensive weapon with the intent to commit an indictable offence, never being licensed, police pursuit not stop driving dangerously and with being in custody of a knife in a public place in late December.

He also faces charges of contravening an AVO in Nowra on December 31, drive while unlicensed on December 5 and had pleaded guilty to charges of never being licensed and carry an offensive implement in a public place in Nowra on November 16 and with being in custody of a knife in a public place in Nowra on September 6.

He also faces four counts of dishonesty obtain financial advantage by deception, receiving and disposing of stolen property, concerning an allegedly stolen St George credit card on February 2 last year.

It is alleged Stewart used the card to purchase a number of items including cigarettes and lighters, two energy drinks, fuel, three ice creams and a bottle of Sprite soft drink at South Nowra.

All matters will be back before Nowra Local Court on April 7.

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Leeton adds to wins in Young

GROUP Nine surprise-packet Albury have finished the inaugural Young Leaguetag Carnival with a win more valuable than the competition’s top prizemoney.
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While perennial Group 20champions Leeton are celebrating yet anotherleaguetagtitle, Albury are coming to terms with success of a different kind.

Thunder have ended an incredible sporting legacy by defeating Group Nine rival Brothers 6-nil at the fledgling championships.

The win will provide an immeasurable confidence boost for the new-look Albury team, as the squad prepares for the start of the Group Nine season.

“Brothers are the absolutebenchmark team of the Group Nine leaguetag competition,” coach Mark Daly said.

“No one has beaten them in years, so for us to do it so early in the season is just a great achievement for the girls.”

The win over Brothers paved the way for Albury to face eventual winners Leeton in an “exciting” semi-finalshowdown that went down-to-the-wire.

“The Leetongame was very exciting. The score ended up14-12,but they (the Greens) onlyscored in the last minute,” Daly said.

“It wasvery close. I am very happy with how the girls performed, especially since Leeton went on to win the final.

“It just goes to show how close the girls were.”

The much-favoured Group 20 powerhouse emerged victorious from the inaugural Young LeaguetagCarnivalafter an outstanding grand final performance.

The Greens lived up to expectations by accounting for Group Nine heavy-weight Temora 10-6 in Sunday’s grand final.

The win is helping generate plenty of anticipation ahead of the start of the Group 20 competition, which will see the Greens and rival West Wyalong share early favouritism.

Albury’s efforts at the carnival have seen Thunder leave a lasting impression on their rivals ahead of the upcoming Gundagai carnival on March 28.

“We have a few new faces and we have a lot ofnew structures in place,” Daly said.

“I amreally happy with how things are coming together. The team has a bit more experience and it’sshaping up as a really strong little squad.

“They improved in every game they played (in Young), and they are only going to go from strength to strength now.”

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Local government: Councils’ opposition to super merger ramping up

Holroyd Council mayor Greg Cummings: jobs could be lost. Photo: Geoff Jones Canada Bay mayor Angelo Tsirekas: hefty rises in rates.
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Holroyd Council mayor Greg Cummings: jobs could be lost. Photo: Geoff Jones

Holroyd Council mayor Greg Cummings: jobs could be lost. Photo: Geoff Jones

Holroyd Council mayor Greg Cummings: jobs could be lost. Photo: Geoff Jones

Councils are ramping up their opposition to the prospect of forced mergers after the state election by raising fears of higher rates, lost jobs and fewer services.

Leichhardt, Canada Bay, Ashfield, Burwood and Marrickville councils which face amalgamation into a “super council” of 342,000 residents are touting a report from consultants Morrison Low. The greatest negative effect, the report says, is the reduction in the number of councillors making it more difficult for residents to access their council.

The report says creating a super council would cost around $60 million more that the government would provide, would meet only four of the seven Fit for the Future benchmarks after 10 years and could mean higher rates for high-value properties.

Canada Bay mayor Angelo Tsirekas said his residents could pay up to 20 per cent more in rates, while businesses could pay 80 per cent more. The report says the average residential rate would rise in Leichhardt, Canada Bay and Strathfield and decline in Marrickville, Ashfield and Burwood.

At Holroyd Council more than 230 local residents and business owners attended a recent Hands off Holroyd rally. Most telling for the government was that all local sitting MPs and political candidates supported the council’s stance. A second rally will be held on March 19, nine days before the election.

“The meeting provided people the chance to find out how 450 jobs could be lost and crucial services like childcare, disability care, free baby immunisation and Meals on Wheels could be reduced or scrapped altogether,” mayor Greg Cummings said.

A paper challenging the arguments for amalgamation by the mayor of Mosman, economist Peter Abelson, and Macquarie University associate professor Roselyne Joyeux has been accepted for publication by the international journal Public Money and Management.

In the paper, Smoke and Mirrors, recently presented to a Local Government Professionals Australia forum, they dispute the claim that larger councils are more financially sustainable than small ones.

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State government’s funding boost to attract tourists to the region

THE NSW government has pledged to spend $6 million to boost tourism in regional NSW, with a plan that could benefit Orange, Bathurst and Dubbo.
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The funding would be spent on a regional conference strategy to increase midweek visitation to the regional centres through the promotion of business, sporting and community group conferences, meetings and exhibitions.

NSW deputy premier Troy Grant pledged to spend the $6 million in consultation with tourism and hospital industry representatives.

The strategy was influenced by a report by Tourism Accommodation Australia that stated regional NSW’s share of overnight visitor stays had dropped from 50 per cent to 45 per cent in 2012-13 and was on track to decline to 40.2 per cent by 2022-23.

Throwing support behind the conference strategy, the association’s communications manager Peter Hook said Orange had excellent weekend visitation but needed to pick up on midweek tourism.

“Orange is doing well from a leisure perspective but for hotels they need that overnight visitor to maximise their investment,” he said.

On the other hand he said Bathurst and Dubbo had appropriate conference facilities already in place, but needed to attract more people to use them.

He said the conference centre at Dubbo’s Taronga Western Plains Zoo, and Charles Sturt University and Mount Panorama at Bathurst, were ideal facilities.

“What has happened in these sorts of places is that the Monday-to-Thursday business trade has diminished or stagnated but meets all of the conference modelling strategies,” Mr Hook said.

He said many businesses did not recover after the global financial crisis and usually held their conferences closer to their main bases in the city, so needed reminding of what was available in regional areas.

Brand Orange executive officer Rhonda Sear said the Orange-based tourism group had been working on increasing conference and business tourism in the region for the past 18 months.

“The thing is, we have been very limited in regard to conference venues in regard to capacity with what we do hold,” she said.

However, Ms Sear said there would be more facilities available in the future and the Orange Ex-Services’ Club was increasing its conference capacity as part of ongoing renovations.

Orange Ex-Services’ Club CEO Cameron Provost said the conference facilities would be upgraded in about three or four years as stage four of the renovation plan.

“I think it [the conference strategy] is a very good initiative, it’s very much welcomed by myself and the club,” Mr Provost said.

He hoped it would offer the not-for-profit club support or funding to complete the conference centre work.

“It would help with tourism and attracting events to town to help accommodation, shops and bed and breakfast places. It would not only benefit the club but the community as well,” Mr Provost said.

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O’Shea chases back-to-back Golden Mile wins

Bendigo’s Glenn O’Shea will race off scratch in Sunday night’s Andy’s Earthmovers-backed Golden Mile Wheelrace final at the Bendigo International Madison athletics-cycling carnival. Picture: JIM ALDERSEY
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VICTORIOUS a year ago, Bendigo cycling champion Glenn O’Shea will chase consecutive Golden Mile Wheelrace wins at Sunday night’s finale to the Bendigo International Madison athletics-cycling carnival.

O’Shea will race off scratch in the Andy’s Earthmovers-sponsored track cycling classic.

A crack field in the Golden Mile final to be contested at 7.15pm at the Tom Flood Sports Centre includes Jackson Law (10m), Leif Lampater (20), Scott Sunderland (20),Sam Welsford (25),Callum Scotson (30) and Dutch star Roy Pieters (40).

Bendigo’s Luke Knox, who will make his deubt in the McCaig Daikin Airconditioning-backed Bendigo International Madison later on Sunday, has won through to the Golden Mile final.

O’Shea began the madison carnival by winning Friday night’s Andy Earthmovers-backed criterium in the heart of Bendigo.

A dual winner of the Bendigo International Madison, O’Shea was joint winner with yachtsman Glenn Ashby in the 50th Bendigo Bank Bendigo Advertiser-Prime 7 Sports Star of the Year award.

O’Shea is a four-time winner of Sports Star which was first won by cycling legend Frank McCaig in 1965-66.

Field for the Andy’s Earthmovers Golden Mile Wheelrace (1600m):

Glenn O’Shea scratch, Jackson Law 10, Nick Yallouris 10, Leif Lampater 20, Scott Sunderland 20.

Sam Welsford 25, Callum Scotson 30, Roy Pieters 40, Rohan Wight 40, Ben Abels 60.

Thomas McDonald 70, Thomas McFarlane 70,Evan Hull 80, Alex Porter 80, Derek Radzikiewicz 90.

William Key 105, Harrison Lodge 110,Todd Satchell 115, Luke Knox 125, Ashleigh Kay 135,

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