NORM McVitty, a trainer of more than 900 starters and 90 wins, has sadly passed, leaving behind many friends in and outside of Victorian harness racing.
Norm, pictured second from left after a Melton win in January, will be remembered as a “true gentleman” and will be “endlessly missed” by all who knew him, says friend Chelsea Dickson.
He was renowned for his “uncanny knack” in picking modest horses and producing winners, as well as having headline performers like Honourable Heir and Windsor Royal.
Honourable Heir produced the richest win of his career when he scored in the CUB Stawell Laidlaw Cup in October 1992, with John Caldow steering his 14-1 chance to victory by a metre over favourite Bowral Boy.
It was one of 16 wins with the entire, part of Norm’s training career that (since the start of official records) featured 957 starters for 90 wins and 210 placings.
He loved the Mildura Cup Carnival, his home track Ballarat, where he won Horse of the Year with Our Sir Oliver, and Maryborough Harness Racing Club, and celebrated a win at Bray Raceway as recent as March 30 when Fun On Rum scored.
Ms Dickson said his parting request “was to race Loyola Golf at Ararat (on Monday), an absolute epic third that will forever be remembered as Norm’s wish”.
“He would have been so proud to have his family and closest friends there supporting the purple and yellow colours,” she said. “Heartfelt thanks for the condolences and drivers who wore a black armband with honour of our great man, particularly Declan (Murphy).”
A funeral service for Norm will be held from noon on Monday, April 24, at Harrison’s Funerals, 748 Geelong Rd, Ballarat. A celebration of his life will follow at 1.30pm at The Ballarat Trotting Club, Carlton Draught Room.
National Trotguide extends its warmest condolences to Norm’s family and friends.