Jack Styring

Jack Styring (right) with jockey John Keating (Image: Racing Photos)

Styring's special trip to Flemington

Not many who are here to talk about it have attended more Flemington meetings than Jack Styring.

The Victorian racing legend attended his first meeting at 'Headquarters' in the late 1930s as a child and has witnessed many of the biggest moments to have occurred there since.

Saturday might see the 90-year-old have a new favourite moment at Flemington, with the Victoria Racing Club honouring Styring at the Living Legends Raceday.

The meeting commences with the inaugural running of the Jack Styring Plate. It has been struck to honour the man who is most famous for his race calling but has performed many other roles within the industry, including studmaster and journalist.

Styring thought VRC life membership and the distinguished service award for outstanding contribution to the Victorian racing industry that he received in 2011 were good, but this might top the lot.

"I'm very honoured," he said.

"I suppose I've been around a long time. I had a 90th birthday a couple of weeks ago, I've been a life member of the VRC and I've had a lot of friends on the VRC committee at different times.

"I deem this as a great honour."

A mark of exactly how long Styring has been attending races at Flemington is highlighted by what he considers his fondest memory from the track.

The same horse is also responsible for his saddest moment.

"As for a favourite moment, it comes easy to me; Bernborough when he won the Newmarket (in 1946)," Styring said.

"I also saw him when he broke down (in the Mackinnon Stakes). My word that was tough to see.

"Nobody knew who won the race, all they were interested in was how Bernborough was."

Styring and his family will be special guests of the VRC on Saturday, when most races are named in honour of residents at the Living Legends retirement farm for racehorses.

Melbourne Cup winners Rogan Josh, Might And Power, Brew and Efficient all have races named in their honour, along with four-time Melbourne Cup runner Who Shot Thebarman, Australian Cup and Turnbull Stakes winner Zipping and eight-time Group 1 winner Apache Cat.

Styring's race is a $125,000 event for two-year-old fillies over 1100 metres and when asked for a tip, he was non-committal.

"I haven't had a good look at the field and I doubt very much I'll have a bet in the race. My punting days are over. I gave it away after (1960s star) Winfreux got beaten by a head and I had the bank on him. That was the end of the punt for me," he said.

Danny O'Brien's debut Bendigo winner Moldova heads BetEasy's market at $3 with Mat Ellerton and Simon Zahra-trained debutant Parmie ($4.60) and Lindsay Park's Maqsad ($5), who won at Seymour on debut before finishing second in the Listed Dequetteville Stakes in Adelaide, others prominent in betting.