QLD to host Australasian Young Drivers Championships

Queensland will host some of the world’s most promising harness racing talent when the 1EQUINE 2023 Australasian Young Drivers Championships returns to the Sunshine State next month.

Staged at Albion Park and Redcliffe, the 39th running of the series will bring together the best under 25-year-old drivers from across Australia and New Zealand.

A series of 10 races will be held at both The Creek and The Triangle, starting on Tuesday, December 12 before the final heats on Saturday, December 16, coinciding with the 2023 Ladbrokes Inter Dominion Pacing and Trotting Championships.

Local young guns Angus Garrard, who is fresh off claiming the Queensland Young Drivers Championship, and Leonard Cain will fly the flag for Queensland, with the host state allocated two representatives after defending champion, Victoria’s Tayla French, was ruled out due to exceeding the age limit for the series.

New South Wales, Victoria, Tasmania, South Australia and Western Australia will all have one driver each, while New Zealand have selected three drivers.

Drivers will accumulate points over a 10-race series, with the driver finishing the series with the most points declared the winner.

The series will be sponsored by local Queensland business 1EQUINE, who supply nutritional supplements to leading harness and thoroughbred stables.

Racing Queensland CEO Jason Scott said the series would add to the excitement already building around the 2023 Inter Dominion.

“The eyes of the harness racing world will be on Queensland in December for ID23, and the addition of the Australasian Young Drivers Championships to the racing calendar will only enhance the quality of racing on offer next month,” Mr Scott said.

“Angus and Leonard have over 260 wins between them already this season, with the pair firmly entrenched within the Queensland Drivers’ Metropolitan Premiership top 10, and I am sure they will do the state proud.

“We are looking forward to showcasing the Sunshine State’s quality racing to a national audience, and are hoping Queensland can bring home the crown.”

The 2023 AYDC field also includes:

> Zev Meredith – New Zealand;
> Crystal Hackett – NZ North Island;
> Sarah O’Reilly – NZ South Island;
> Mitch Ford – Tasmania;
> Emily Suvaljko – Western Australia;
> Corey Johnson – South Australia;
> James Herbertson – Victoria; and
> Josh Gallagher – New South Wales.

In addition to the race series, the drivers will partake in a range of social and development activities.

These include a visit to Queensland Off-The-Track Acknowledged Retrainer Amanda Chant, as well as listening to guest speakers to assist their professional development on topics including media and social media.

Click here for more information on the 2023 Australasian Young Drivers Championships.

Leonard Cain (L) and Angus Garrard will take on the best young drivers from Australasia.