THE Bathurst Harness Racing Club has announced Bernie and Cath Hewitt as the Bathurst Gold Crown Honourees for 2019.
Bernie and Cath Hewitt, who are synonymous with the harness racing industry, undoubtedly had their greatest season last year with Group 1 success with College Chapel in the Bathurst Gold Crown and Royal Story in the Breeders Challenge Finals.
“My board’s selection of Bernie and Cath as the Gold Crown Honourees for this year is a reward for their many years of service and dedication to the harness racing industry,” club president Wayne Barker said.
“Any success in sport only comes about through sheer hard work and dedication to the cause and Bernie and Cath epitomise this, so it was a very easy decision for the board to select them this year as our honourees.”
Bernie has trained and driven 1400 winners since 1983 and rates Nikalong Shadow, Super Nik, Pretty Sassy and Read About Lexy as some of the best horses he has trained and driven throughout his career.
“I’ve been very fortunate to drive some great horses throughout my career. Nikalong Shadow was one of the best. He was trained by Dad, won 45 races and also contested the 1989 Inter Dominion in Perth. I have very fond memories of that year,” Hewitt said.
“It seems such a long time ago now since I drove my very first winner, Smokey Comedy, at Canberra back in the late 70s. I would have only been out of school 12 months then, but that first win is something I’ll never forget.
“This is a tough sport and a lot of long hours are involved in the training and racing, however, Cath and I love what we do and I couldn’t have got to where I am today without the love and support that Cath has given to me. Cath deserves the recognition as much as me.”
The Hewitt family relocated to Bathurst in 2001 and had instant success, winning two Bathurst training and driving premierships.
They eventually set up their home at Georges Plains, which now encompasses a magnificent establishment that can cater for up to 45 horses in training.
“I have everything I need here at home. I can walk out the back door and basically start work straight away,” Hewitt said.
“My business has always been a family affair and it is fantastic to see Jase, Doug and Gem all involved with harness racing.
"All three have been very successful in the training and driving ranks as well. I couldn’t be any more proud of them than I already am.
“It was a shock to us both when we were informed about the selection, and to be included in the list of Gold Crown Honourees, the who’s who of harness racing, it doesn’t get any better than that."
Bernie and Cath Hewitt will be formally acknowledged as 2019 Gold Crown Honourees on Thursday, March 28 at the Bathurst RSL Club.
The Bathurst Gold Crown Carnival will run from March 22 to March 29. Come along and join Bathurst Harness Racing Club for seven days of great racing and social events. To book your seat at one of the functions, contact the club.
The Bathurst Gold Crown Carnival incorporates the local community and brings participants from all over Australia and New Zealand.
The Gold Crown Carnival will incorporate five race meetings and six social functions: the calcutta/barrier draw, Honouree Dinner, Ladies' Night Marquee Function, Ambrose Golf Day, cocktail party and Final Night Marquee Function.