Champion names to recall Sydney’s racing past

Sydneysiders are invited to have their say on proposals to honour the city’s rich horse racing heritage by naming a new park and street after thoroughbreds trained in the Zetland area.

The new park and street are on the site of the former thoroughbred horse training stable, Zetland Lodge. The lodge was established in 1874 by Governor Sir Hercules Robinson and managed by accomplished trainer and Waterloo Municipal Council alderman Thomas Lamond.

The proposed park and street names are:

  • Hyperion Park – Hyperion was one of Robinson’s thoroughbreds, trained by Lamond, which won the Champagne Stakes in 1875
  • Kingsborough Way – another of Robinson’s thoroughbreds, Kingsborough was also trained by Lamond and won the AJC Derby, Champagne Stakes, Sires’ Produce Stakes, Hawkesbury Guineas and Metropolitan races.

“Zetland is part of Green Square – one of the fastest growing residential precincts in Australia – and most Sydneysiders would remember it as Sydney’s original industrial heartland,” Lord Mayor Clover Moore said.

“But there was a time when Zetland was where the best thoroughbreds in Sydney were trained, and we want to honour that history with the naming of this park and street.

“It’s fitting that the horses’ owner Governor Sir Hercules Robinson and trainer Thomas Lamond were very active in helping to shape Sydney during those early years.

“Governor Robinson played an integral role in shaping the NSW political system during its early years and the administration of racing clubs across the state.

“Mr Lamond was a Melbourne Cup-winning trainer who also spent nine years as an alderman on Waterloo Municipal Council, serving four stints as mayor.”

City Historian Dr Lisa Murray said Zetland was renowned as the home of horse training stables.

“By the early 20th century, Thomas Lamond was revered as a veteran of the industry, and Zetland Lodge recognised as the oldest racing stables in metropolitan Sydney,” Dr Murray said.

“The opening up of four proprietary racecourses in the South Sydney district, along with the AJC’s Randwick Racecourse nearby, encouraged horse trainers and bookies to establish in the area.

“In 1929, there were 64 trainers listed in Redfern, Alexandria, Zetland and Mascot. Radios blared from the houses and haunts of SP bookies. Each of the five race tracks was accessible by tram and spectators from the eastern suburbs and city travelled there en masse to weekday races and on the weekends.”

The four racecourses were Victoria Park in Zetland; Rosebery Park, just south of Gardeners Road in Mascot; Ascot Down in Botany; and Kensington Racecourse, now UNSW Australia (University of NSW).

Council has approved another proposal to name 3.8 hectares of Forest Lodge green space as Harold Park, to commemorate the site’s former use as the home of harness racing in NSW.

Source: City of Sydney

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