I wonder how many runners of the day showed concern for the poor handicapper who nearly had his blown off!
Planning at Meet Back-fired!
31 December 1951
When the Daylesford Gift programme was due to start on Saturday, the Victorian Athletic League starter and other league officials had not arrived. Then the trouble began......
The meeting eventually began 45 minutes late, with the starter missing and league handicapper Mr. F Prince - who had arrived with fellow officials, Messrs Storan and Kent - acting as a substitute.
The handicappers were delayed when a steam train replaced the normal diesel train which could not accommodate the additional gift traffic.
But the troubles were not yet over, as supplies of cartridges for the single-barrelled shot gun being used as a starting pistol ran out, and the substitution of a metal gong proved too confusing for runners.
Makeshift blanks made from "deloused" live cartridges came into use but did not make enough noise.
Using live cartridges fired into sand bags proved disastrous when one back-fired and smashed handicapper Prince's hand.
He was rushed to hospital for treatment.