Country racing pioneer will never be forgotten

Cameron NewboldAlbany Advertiser
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Long-time country horse trainer Dixie Solly in Mt Barker.
Camera IconLong-time country horse trainer Dixie Solly in Mt Barker. Credit: Laurie Benson

WA racing’s peak body has paid tribute to a “pioneer” of the industry after revered country trainer and administrator Dixie Solly died last week.

Solly lost his long battle with illness on Thursday, after training more than 200 winners in a decorated career which included 23 years as the inaugural president of the Country Racing Association.

In January last year, in front of family and friends he received a life membership badge from the Albany Racing Club.

Dixie Solly after recieving his Albany Racing Club life membership last year.
Camera IconDixie Solly after recieving his Albany Racing Club life membership last year. Credit: Cameron Newbold

RWWA racing manager Charlotte Mills said Solly’s impact on the country racing industry would not be forgotten.

“RWWA is deeply saddened to hear of the loss of Dixie and our thoughts go out to his wife Lesley and the rest of the family,” Mills said.

“Dixie was a pioneer of the CRA in WA ... His dedication and commitment to the industry was second to none.

“This is truly a sad day for racing, and his contribution, along with his genuine love and passion for the industry, will be sorely missed.”

Apprentice Aaron Rogers gets the Dixie Solly-trained Noble Steed to victory in Albany.
Camera IconApprentice Aaron Rogers gets the Dixie Solly-trained Noble Steed to victory in Albany. Credit: Laurie Benson

Solly prepared 217 winners in total, with his biggest thrill coming in 2008 when he won the listed Cyril Flower Stakes with Noble Steed.

His last victory came with Force Element on March 27 last year in Albany.

Chairman of the Australian Jockeys Association Craig Staples paid tribute to his close friend.

“My thoughts are with Lesley in this hard time with the passing of my friend and mentor Dixie Solly,” he said.

Dixie Solly was a passionate country racing advocate.
Camera IconDixie Solly was a passionate country racing advocate.

“He will be remembered for his tireless work for country racing.”

Solly was also a talented bush poet, who recited poetry at events across WA.

A service to remember Solly’s life will be held at Amity Rose Funerals on Monday at 10.30am.

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