Townson Oval, field of screamsphotos, video

Townson Oval, field of screams | photos, video TweetFacebookTownson Oval the day after #[email protected][email protected]@[email protected]南京夜网/1KDw0gQy4E
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— Josh Callinan (@joshuacallinan) June 19, 2017He added that a council representative inspected the field on Saturday“andon Sunday I had discussions with the council officers about the potential of playing.”

He said the weather forecast indicated the rain would clear, but:“It got very wet during the middle of first grade. The half-time break wasa hell of a shower.”

South Newcastle have three more regular-season games at Townson but the next is not until July 2.Merewether-Carlton have seven home games remaining, the next four in a row, starting with the annual blockbuster against Wanderers on Saturday.

“We have been in contact with council tomake sure they understand we have consecutive home games against Wanderers and Hamilton,” Merewether president Steve Reid said.“Our expectation is that council will be able to get the ground up. Wanderers and Hamilton are massive revenue games for us.”

Reid said he was hoping to attract a crowd of more than2500 for the clash with the Two Blues.

“It isthe greatest rivalry in Newcastle sport,” Reid said.“That is borne from the amount of people who turn up and passiondisplayed irrespective of where both clubs are on the ladder.Non-rugby people go there just to see the contest.”

Saturday also doubles as Merewether’s sponsors’ day.

Merewether cricket club president Ken Beckett was in disbelief when he visited the ground on Monday.

“I just can’t believe they played on it,” Beckett said.“It’s out of our control in terms of the cricket club, but it’s a mess.We take a bitof pride in the place and ourcurator does a wonderful job. Helooks after the ground like it’s hisown backyard…it was looking a picture at the end of last season.”

Mitch hopes return proves magic tonic

A-GAME: Former Jets and Glory midfielder Mitch Oxborrow hopes to play his way back to the A-League via a strong season with Broadmeadow Magic. Picture: Max Mason-HubersMITCH Oxborrow was the first at a sodden Magic Park for a recovery session on Monday night.
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The 22-year-old had a smile on his face and a spring in his step. It wascompletecontrast to the midfielder’s final training session atPerth Glory in May.

Oxborrow had been told by coach Kenny Lowe that he wasn’t inhis plans.Itwas a conversation thatOxborrow had not envisaged.Professional football was all he knew.

“When I was released I panickedbig time,” Oxborrow said.“I havebeen relatively lucky andalways landed on my feet.Youwant to stay in the A-League, but sometimes you have to take a step back and re-evaluate.”

He started training with a local team in Perth to ensure he was ready“if something came up”.The break also rekindled the fire in his belly.He needed an opportunity and former teammate, now Magic coachRuben Zadkovichwashappy to assist.The pair played together for the Jets, where Oxborrow debuted aged17,and in Perth.

Mitch hopes return proves magic tonic TweetFacebook Mitch OxborrowPictures: Max Mason-Hubers, Peter Stoop, Getty Images“When I was at Perth he matured a lot,” Zadkovich said.“He will give you his heart and soul if you show him that you do care and do believe in him.”

Oxborrow was man-of-the match on debut for Magic in a 3-1 victory over Valentine at Cahill Oval on Saturday.

“He deserves to be in the A-League,” Zadkovich insisted.“He is willing to come back to NPL to prove how good he is, lay it on the line and be judged on his performances.He started fivegames last year ata star-studded Perth Glory. The guy is a special player.”

Oxborrow met girlfriend, Charlotte Coleman, during his two years at the Jets and they are back staying with her family.

“I just want to play and I want to win,” Oxborrow said.“Wherever that takes me–if it is Magic for the rest of the season or it goes on from there–we will see. Playing for Rubes wasa major part.He is a bit like an older brother to me.I could have stayed in Perth but I wanted a change. Even though I have been here before it is something fresh.”

Oxborrow, a youth international with a sweet left foot, returned from a broken foot and played the final four rounds for Glorybut did not feature in the finals.

“You need a coach who believes in you,” he said.“I have played 30-odd games in the A-League and don’t thinkI have played more than fivein a row.When I was here under Dutchy (Gary van Egmond) he believed in mebut I was 17. When you get to 21-22, you know how to play the game, you know how to grind out a game.I think I have come back a different player.”

The Jets have two places to fill on the their 23-man roster, earmarked for visa players.

“At presentwe don’t have any spots available,” Jets bossLawrie McKinna said.“But if anyone is doing well in the local premier league we are keen tobring them in for a look. It might not be for something straight away but there are injury replacements and other opportunities down the track.”

Oxborrow’s desire to return to the professional ranks remains strong.

“Where ever you play you want to go to the step above and keep moving on,” he said. “In some aspects it is my last shot. After the weekend I was buzzing. I wantto win, I want to do something at Magic andI want to make a difference.”

Lloyd breathes new life into amazing song

LUCKY STAR: Alex Lloyd’s soaring vocal and ability to create emotional melodies made him one of Australia’s leading songwriters in the early 2000s.
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ALEX Lloyd describes it as bubblegum. A hit song that becomes so flogged on radio that it loses its flavour.

Ed Sheeran’s monster hit Shape Of You has earned bubblegum status withLloydand his four children in theirCentral Coast home.

Many would argue Lloyd’s own career-defining hit Amazing over time has become overexposed. It was Triple J Hottest’s 100’s winnerin 2001 and claimed the APRA song of the year award a year later. Eventually it became a staple of commercial radio and a karaoke favourite.

Last year Lloyd re-imagined his soaring anthem along with other beloved material like Coming HomeandGreenon the album Acoustica. The fragile folkre-interpretation of Amazing is Acoustica’s highlight and re-invigorated the song.

“It was good fun doing that record,” Lloyd said.“It was fun to pull those songs apart and put them back together again. I do like the new Amazing version, it’s not as grandiose and poppy. It’s still a good song, but ina more laid-back folk environment.”

However, messing with a beloved song can earn the ire of fans as Lloyd learned. At last year’s AFL Brownlow Medal some fans, including cricketer Glenn Maxwell, criticisedLloyd’s re-working of Amazing on Twitter. It led to several news sites hammering the performance.

“I actually thought I did it pretty good,” Lloyd said with a laugh.“My voice has changed since I was 22. When I was 22 my voice was a lot cleaner and now I sound like an older man.

Alex Lloyd – Amazing“I think a lot of people were expecting the pop version of Amazing and they got a different version, andwithin the room at the Brownlow it felt really good. I got nothing but people wanting to buy me drinks at the end of that, lots of famous footballers.

“I don’t know with the Twitter thing. I think there was only five or six really bad comments and the news made a story out of it. I think it happens quite a bit these days.”

Currently Lloydis focused on the future. New material is being written for the follow-up to2013’s Urban Wilderness, but Lloyd admits being a 42-year-old with four children makes songwriting harder than in his halcyon days ofthe early 2000s.

“Ihave thousands of ideas, but turning an idea into a song is a different thing,” he said.“Atthe same time I’m writing, I’m looking for something a bit different to what I’d usually do for my own satisfaction.”

Lloyd plans to continue working on the record inNashville as the musical city left a lasting impression on him last year. While there he worked withother artists, includingAustralian country duo O’Shea, who recently released the single Start Over, co-written by Lloyd.

Co-writing is becoming increasingly attractive.

“Well, I’m not a young good-looking pop star anymore,” Lloydsaid.“If I ever was. I’m not as marketable as I hope I once was, so it’s good to be able to write with other people and help them on their journey and also get a little bit of satisfaction from hearing a song on the radio every now and then that you had something to do with.”

Alex Lloyd performs up close and acoustic at Central Bar on Friday.

‘Enough is enough’

‘Enough is enough’ Kevin Gray is speaking out after he and his fiancée, Ashleigh Hutchins, were followed and photographed while out shopping at the weekend. Picture: DARREN HOWE
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Kevin Gray is speaking out after he and his fiancée were followed and photographed while out shopping at the weekend. Picture: DARREN HOWE

Kevin Gray is speaking out after he and his fiancée, Ashleigh Hutchins, were followed and photographed while out shopping at the weekend. Picture: DARREN HOWE

Powerlifter Kevin Gray holds the world record in the 59 kilogram class after squatting 240 kilograms in April. Picture: DARREN HOWE

Powerlifter Kevin Gray holds the world record in the 59 kilogram class after squatting 240 kilograms in April. Picture: DARREN HOWE

Powerlifter Kevin Gray holds the world record in the 59 kilogram class after squatting 240 kilograms in April. Picture: DARREN HOWE

Powerlifter Kevin Gray holds the world record in the 59 kilogram class after squatting 240 kilograms in April. Picture: DARREN HOWE

Powerlifter Kevin Gray holds the world record in the 59 kilogram class after squatting 240 kilograms in April. Picture: DARREN HOWE

TweetFacebookKevin Gray is no stranger to adversity.

Weighing in at 55 kilograms, the champion Bendigo powerlifter can squat almost five times his own body weight and smashedthe 227.5 kilogramworld record in April.

But despite the respect he commands in the sporting world, the 122 centimetre tall strongmansays he is frequently subjected to obnoxious, harassing behaviour from ignorant gawkers.

And when two men followed Mr Gray and his fiancée, Ashleigh Hutchins,through the supermarket at the weekend, openly snapping pictures on their phones as if the couple were a “circus act”, the weight of their ignorance became too much to bear.

RELATED:Bendigo powerlifter Kevin Gray smashes world record

“He had his phone up as I looked behind me and and I heard a click and so obviously he’s taken a photo of me so I thought ‘enough is enough’, so I walked around the aisle and met them head on,” he said.

“They were laughing to one another obviously about that and so I walked up to them and said ‘You guys find it pretty funny, taking photos of other people so I’m going to take photos of you’.

“They were gobsmacked really that I stood up to them.”

Mr Gray saidhe experiencedsimilar incidents “at least two or three times a week” but seeing the men target his fiancée as well was the last strawand he took to social media to call out theirbehaviour in the hope of sparing others the same treatment.

“It doesn’t really bring me down but when it involves someone I care about that’s a whole different story and I don’t want that to happen to my children one day,” he said.

It has since emerged the men were members of a gridiron team, in Bendigo for the weekend’s game against the Dragons, and their club, the Northern Raiders, issued an apology on Sunday.

“Our club has prided itself on being a diverse and inclusive club and we are deeply embarrassed by the actions of these two individuals,” it reads.

“We would like to apologise to the members of [the] public who were affected by this. We have issued apologies directly to the people involved from the Northern Raiders Gridiron Club. The players involved have also issued apologies. We have taken action internally and a discipline hearing will be convened this week.”

But Mr Gray said while representatives of the club had contacted him to apologise, he still had not heard directly from the players involved.

“All I got was a screen shot of a message that was sent to him from the guy that actually did it,” he said.

“I would have rathered havea message from the actual guys that actually did it, this third-party business is a bit of a cop out I feel.”

Mr Gray said the response to his Facebook post had been largely positive and he hoped the incident would help raise awareness about respecting people who are different.

“Basically think twice before you act and thinkhow youractions are going to affect other people before you go through with something,” he said.

“The last thing I think of if I see someone different is to pull out my phone, it’s [about] respecting other people’s space.”

The Northern Raiders Gridiron Club was contacted for comment.

Bendigo Advertiser

Boyfriend charged with murder of Carly McBride

Boyfriend charged with murder of Carly McBride ARRESTED: Police lead Sayle Newson away after his arrest in San Remo on Monday morning. He did not apply for bail.
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MISSED: Mother of two Carly McBride was reported missing on September 30, 2014 … police found her remains near Scone almost two years later.

SHATTERED: Carly McBride’s parents Steve McBride and Lorraine Williams pleaded for information during the three-year mystery.

MYSTERIOUS: Carly McBride, 31, disappeared after heading to a fast food outlet in Muswellbrook.

The vicinity of where Carly McBride’s remains were found.

The vicinity of where Carly McBride’s remains were found.

The vicinity of where Carly McBride’s remains were found.

Superintendent Guy Guiana addressing the media at the press conference on Thursday, August 11.

Superintendent Guy Guiana addressing the media at the press conference on Thursday, August 11.

MYSTERIOUS: Carly McBride, 31, disappeared after heading to a fast food outlet in Muswellbrook.

INVESTIGATION: Police at Muswellbrook’s Highbrook Park early last year.

SEARCHING: Divers in one of the dams near Calgaroo Avenue, Muswellbrook, in February 2015.

PUBLIC PLEA: Carly’s parents Lorraine Williams and Steve McBride beg for help at a Muswellbrook press conference in June 2015.

Carly McBride search, Muswellbrook, 18 February 2015. Photos Police Media

Carly McBride search, Muswellbrook, 18 February 2015. Photos Police Media

Carly McBride search, Muswellbrook, 18 February 2015. Photos Police Media

Carly McBride search, Muswellbrook, 18 February 2015. Photos Police Media

Carly McBride search, Muswellbrook, 18 February 2015. Photos Police Media

Carly McBride search, Muswellbrook, 18 February 2015. Photos Police Media

Carly McBride search, Muswellbrook, 18 February 2015. Photos Police Media

Carly McBride search, Muswellbrook, 18 February 2015. Photos Police Media

Carly McBride search, Muswellbrook, 18 February 2015. Photos Police Media

Carly McBride search, Muswellbrook, 18 February 2015. Photos Police Media

Carly McBride search, Muswellbrook, 18 February 2015. Photos Police Media

Carly McBride search, Muswellbrook, 18 February 2015. Photos Police Media

Carly McBride search, Muswellbrook, 18 February 2015. Photos Police Media

Carly McBride search, Muswellbrook, 18 February 2015. Photos Police Media

Carly McBride search, Muswellbrook, 18 February 2015. Photos Police Media

Carly McBride search, Muswellbrook, 18 February 2015. Photos Police Media

Carly McBride search, Muswellbrook, 18 February 2015. Photos Police Media

Carly McBride search, Muswellbrook, 18 February 2015. Photos Police Media

Carly McBride Press Conference on June 9, 2015.

Carly McBride search, Muswellbrook, 18 February 2015. Photos Police Media

TweetFacebook The search for Carly McBrideCarly McBride was last seen in Calgaroo Avenue in Muswellbrook on September 30, 2014 after visiting her three-year-old daughter who had been living with the child’s father.NEARLY three years ago, Sayle Kenneth Newson demanded to know the truth about what happened to his then girlfriend,Lake Macquarie woman Carly McBride.

He would offer $10,000 cash as a reward. He would maintain a Facebook page that encouraged tip-offs from the community. And he would speak candidly to the media about how the couple’slives were just “taking off”.

On Monday, police alleged Mr Newson knew the truth all along: that he had killed Ms McBride, robbing two children of their mother, and plunging her heartbroken parents into despair as years went by without receiving any answers.

In a breakthrough in a murder mystery that has rattled the Hunter sinceSeptember 30, 2014, Mr Newson was arrested at San Remo on the Central Coast and charged with the Belmont woman’s murder.

He was also charged with two other offences in relation to the torching of a rented Mitsubishi Triton.

Hunter Valley Superintendent Steve Clarkerevealed that a second man – who is in custody at theLithgow Correctional Centre – would also be arrested later in the week.

It will be alleged the pair were part of a joint criminal enterprise to murder Ms McBride.

Mr Newson did not applyfor bail during a brief appearance at Wyong Local Court in the afternoon.

Earlier, Superintendent Clarke said the 39-year-old had boasted to detectives about being a former boxer and Muay Thai champion with “20 wins and no losses”.

That would form a “significant” part of the prosecution case, he said, revealing that a post-mortem of Ms McBride’s remains concluded she died from a heavy blow to the head.

“A post-mortem has revealed that she died from blunt force trauma and we will allege that she was assaulted to the point where she died,” Superintendent Clarke told reporters.

Asked about Mr Newson’s behaviourin the aftermath of Ms McBride’s disappearance, including his appeals for help on Facebook and thereward for information,Superintendent Clarke said detectives had always kept the 39-year-old in their sights, revealing that the accused had used Ms McBride’s card to purchase drinks at McDonald’s after her disappearance.

Many early posts on the “Help Find Carly McBride” Facebook page were personally signed off by Mr Newson.They included appeals for witnesses to come forward with information, to his frustrations with police and the media with how the investigation was being handled, and eventually to his praise for Strike Force Karabi, which was charged with getting to the bottom of Ms McBride’s disappearance. Mr Newson told theNewcastleHeraldin 2014 that he feared the worst.

“I believe she is dead, but I need the truth,” Mr Newson told theHeraldat the time.

Ms McBride’s parents, Steve McBride and Lorraine Williams, did not speak publicly on Monday, butwere understood to be relieved.

“They are obviously very relieved we’ve got to this point, but also very emotional as a result of what’s happened,” Superintendent Clarke said.

Magistrate Peter Feather adjourned the matter to Newcastle Local Court on August 9.

Roads, rates and rubbish are very 1997

ABOUT 20 years ago the average hourly pay of an average worker in the coastal part of the Hunter dominated by Newcastle was $35.60, according to numbers crunched by the National Institute of Economic Industry Research and released by the Australian Local Government Association this week.
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In what it calls the “Inland Hunter”, centred on Singleton/Muswellbrook/Scone, an average worker in 1997 took home an average hourly pay of $34.10.

By 2007 the first signs of a coal boom were working their way through the Hunter and wages, in some sectors, were on the way up. Inthe case of mine workersthey were on their way significantly higher than the average worker in the non-mine sector. And because high mine wages attracted employees from the non-mine sector, average hourly pay in non-mining went up as well.

So the release of data with the State of the Regions report showing average hourly pay in 2017 at $48.10 in the coastal Hunter, and $45.70 in the Upper Hunter, provides evidence to support its argument that the Australian coal mining boom has not provided quite the boom we thought.

Or at least the boom has not been spread evenly.

There is no doubt coal mining has provided the Hunter with significant economic benefits over many years, and supported the employment of many thousands of people. There is no doubt the state has received billions of dollars in royalties, and when the global financial crisis hit in 2008 it was mining –and particularly coal and iron ore –that provided the financial padding that helped Australia ride out the storm.

But times are changing. The Paris Agreement and its implications might seem distant to many Australians, but there is no doubt many countries are responding, and rapidly. And while Federal politicians have settled in for what looks like another long battle over national energy security and the rise of renewables, many individuals and communities are voting with their feet and finding off-grid solutions to rising power prices.

The State of the Regions report and one of its authors, Dr Ian Manning, are throwing out the challenge to local government in regions like the Hunter to take the lead. And they’re using data from the past to show that local solutions from local communities produce the best local results.

It’s a challenge worth thinking about.

Issue: 38,523.

Call for water-ski race speeds to be capped after ‘tragic death’ of champion

Water-ski racing authorities should consider capping speeds after the “tragic death” of a champion observer on NSW’s Hawkesbury River, a coroner says.
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Victorian father-of-four Ian Baker died after his superclass boat The Ringmaster flipped while travelling at 187 km/h during a qualification event, the day before the 2014 Bridge to Bridge Ski Race.

Deputy State Coroner Teresa O’Sullivan told the Glebe Coroner’s Court calls for a speed limit from the sport’s participants had been a “striking feature” of the inquest.

Ian Baker

She recommended Ski Racing Australia consider possible speed restrictions in the unlimited and super-class categories and that Roads and Maritime Service look at whether speed limits should be part of aquatic licences for the Bridge to Bridge Water Ski Classic.

“Speed contributed to Ian’s death,” Ms O’Sullivan said in written findings on Monday.

“The boat could not have become hydro-dynamically unstable, whether as a result of speed alone or impact with an object, unless it was travelling at an excessive speed.”

During the inquest, The Ringmaster’s driver Daniel McMahon said the crash that killed his good friend was so violent and rapid that he thought he had fallen through the bottom of the boat.

He, other crew members and an expert believed the vessel had hit something in the water.

But marine investigator Nayland Aldridge told the inquest the crash could have happened when the bow entered the water and propeller torque took control at high speed.

“I am not able to prefer one expert witness over the other as each opinion was equally plausible,” Ms O’Sullivan said.

“Accordingly, I cannot find, on the balance of probabilities, what caused The Ringmaster to lose control and crash.”

Mr Baker’s death came a year after a fatal Bridge to Bridge crash involving champion skier Sarah Teelow in 2013.

Among Ms O’Sullivan’s other recommendations, was that Ski Racing Australia consider requiring all vessels to carry spinal boards, defibrillators and neck braces.

She also said the authority should look at whether a net or cage could be used to collect debris beneath the water.

Mr Baker’s wife, Joanne, did not speak to reporters as she left the court on Monday.

“Ski racing was one of Ian’s passions and tragically it took him from us,” she said in words read out by Ms O’Sullivan.

“However his biggest passion was his family.”

AAP

Former Jet Holland signs with Austrian club til 2019

CELEBRATE: James Holland playing for the Newcastle Jets against the Central Coast Mariners in the 2008 major semi-final. Picture: Ryan OslandFringe Socceroos midfielder James Holland has put his China troubles behind him, agreeing a return to the Austrian Bundesliga with recently-promoted LASK Linz.
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The 2008 Newcastle Jets premiership winner has been clubless since he and Socceroos attacker Robbie Kruse terminated their contracts with Chinese Super League side Liaoning Whowin last month due to unpaid wages.

Former Adelaide United man Holland made just one appearance in his four months at Liaoning, but now looks set for more game time in a familiar league where he’s experienced success.

The 28-year-old, who won the 2013 Bundesliga title during his three seasons with Austria Wien, has signed a two-year deal with LASK, promoted after winning the second division by 17 points.

“I am looking forward to returning to the Austrian Bundesliga after three years,” Holland told the club’s website.

“With my experience, I would like to help LASK achieve their next goals.”

The 15-times capped Holland hasn’t played for the Socceroos since 2013 but last year said he still harboured international ambitions.

Meanwhile andFootball Federation Australia hopes global exposure of the A-League will increase under a new international media rights deal with management giants IMG.

The six-year deal allows IMG to take the Australian domestic competition – and selected Socceroos matches – to overseas markets and will replace an agreement with Lagardere Sports.

It’s another piece in the puzzle of the code’s coverage, which includes Fox Sports and the Ten Network domestically.

The A-League was shown in 125 territories last year, according to the FFA, which has set it sights on boosting viewership in China, Japan, South Korea, Indonesia, the United States and United Kingdom.

IMG, best known as a fashion model representative agency, has previously struck deals to help expand coverage of the NFL, Bundesliga, Eredivisie, America’s Cup, UEFA tournaments and e-sports events into new markets.

The company owns Sport 24, an in-flight and cruise channel broadcasting 24-hour sports.

The W-League, FFA Cup and selected Matildas’ matches also come under FFA’s deal with IMG.

Earlier this month, Fox Sports announced an arrangement with the FFA to live simulcast its coverage ofSaturdaynight A-League matches – and all finals matches – on Ten’s One channel from next season.

Smith looks for better luck in Tiara draw

NEWCASTLE trainer Ben Smith was hoping for a change in luck at the draw and some sunshine to finish off racefavourite In Her Time’s preparations for the group 1 Tattersall’s Tiara this week.
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Trainer Ben Smith

In Her Time and Kris Lees’ Danish Twist are set to carry Hunter hopes in the $500,000 weight-for-age fillies and mares feature at Doomben on Saturday after nominations closed on Monday.

Smith’s four-year-old mare was the $3.50 favouritefor the race, her fourth consecutive group 1 mission, with TAB Fixed Odds.

In Her Time has jumped from 10, 11 and 12 at her past group 1 efforts for two fifths and an impressive last-start second in the Stradbroke Handicap.

A successful front-runner, In Her Time has been stuck three deep or worseat Doomben in her past two runs and Smith was hoping for a drawcloser to the fence on Wednesday.

“Somewhere around the four to eight mark would be a good barrier for her,” Smith said.

“She hasn’t seen the rail in a long time.”

The Doomben surface was rated a Soft 7 on Monday ahead of In Her Time’s final fast hit-out on the course proper on Tuesday morning.Jockey Josh Parr was flying to Queensland on Monday night to put her through her paces.Smith expected conditions to suit In Her Time on Saturday.

“I’m sure it will be fine, but we will get a better guide there in the morning,” he said.“Sunshine is predicted so hopefully it will dry out abit more. Dead to early soft range, she doesn’t mind it. As long as she’s got a bit of foot in there, she’s fine.

“The work tomorrow willtop her off, then it will be just slow work the rest of the week.Touch wood, everything is going fine, and she loves it up here.She’s really thrived and she’s enjoying herself. She just keeps getting better and stronger.”

Meanwhile, Thursday’s Newcastle meeting on the Beaumont track was moved on Monday to the course proper afterRacing NSW Stewards inspected a water-logged section from the 100m mark to past the winning post.

Scene set for high drama

CELEBRATION: From left at back, Elise Bialek, artistic director Hunter Drama, and Drew Holmes, tutor at Hunter Drama, with year 7 students in a Hunter Drama young actors program. Picture: Simone De PeakIT is an opportunity arguably worth a fair bit of drama.
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Newcastle has been named as only one of three Australian cities eligible for a National Institute of Dramatic Art(NIDA)new scholarship program. The program, also available in Perth and Adelaide, gives young dramatic types the chance to benefit from NIDA’sworld-renowned training methods.

Through complimentary professional training, the scholarship program aims to make the arts accessible to students from all backgrounds to help realise hidden talent and support developing actors in Newcastle.

NIDA chief executive Kate Cherry said NIDAOpen wanted to “inspire young artists to reach their full potential”.

“NIDAis investing in our creative capital and inspiring transformative journeys with our new scholarship program,” she said.

“NIDAOpen creates the future by offering courses that enable additional professional development and tap into unexplored creativity.”

Hunter Drama artistic director Elise Bialek said the scholarships were a great show of confidence in the Newcastle region.

“Having something with NIDA’s name behind it is just a phenomenal opportunity,” she said.

“It’s very cool that Newcastle is chosen as one of those places,it reallymeans we are up and coming and we are being noticed.”

She said it was a rare opportunity for hopeful artists to train with NIDA’s very talented practitioners.

“It is something that we definitely don’t get here,” Ms Bialek said.

“It is so difficult to get in (to NIDA). I know people who have tried out seven or eight times and have never gotten in. They are after something very specific. It’s like cracking a bit of a code in a way.”

Ms Bialek said there was a lot of talent in Newcastle and the drama school was seeing strong demand for its mid-year enrollment.

“I know that Newcastle is very known for its sporting culture, but there’s also this massive underground of performing arts and as soon as you lift the lid on that there’s so much happening,” she said.

A total of fourNIDAOpen scholarships are on offer to Newcastle students in grades 7–12; two for grades 7–10 and two for grades 11–12.

Students have until August 28 to apply and chosen recipients will train withNIDAOpen experts at the Newcastle Grammar School in early October.

To apply, students should visit open.nida.edu.au/2017-scholarships, submit a personal statement about how they would benefit, and provide two short letters of support from community leaders, such as teachers, elders or local artists.