Keeping It In The Family

Article by Provincial Racing NSW
MOST Newcastle racegoers probably didn’t realise it, but they witnessed a very unusual occurrence on Saturday!

Father and daughter Cliff Parker and Candice Carroll worked as clerks of the course at the seven-race meeting.

Whilst a female clerk of the course isn’t common, racing historians cannot recall a father and daughter combination officiating at a race meeting before – and certainly not in the Provincial area.

“Candice and myself have worked with her regular raceday partner Luke Moy at a couple of feature meetings at Newcastle such as the spring carnival when three clerks of the course are required, but this was the first time together when only two were needed,” Parker said.

“It came about yesterday because Luke travelled to Quirindi for the race meeting, which unfortunately didn’t proceed because of a wet section of the track.”

As per our recent story on Candice Carroll carrying on a family tradition, 69-year-old Parker saddled up for more than 40 years on racedays, having started at a Broadmeadow race meeting in March, 1976.

However, a hip operation two years ago resulted in him relinquishing the role to his 41-year-old married daughter.

But he was thrilled to be back in action on Saturday to “keep it in the family”, bringing his horse Bank back into action, with Candice riding her regular pony Roger.

“It was fantastic to do the old job again, especially working with my daughter, and seeing some familiar faces,” Parker said.

“Candice is a very good horsewoman, and loves working as a clerk of the course.

“She has been a regular and successful competitor at Sydney’s famous Royal Easter Show, and also won the champion pony section at Brisbane’s Exhibition (Ekka).”

Parker, who is delighted his daughter’s love of horses has seen her fit into the clerk of the course role as though she has been doing it all her life, will be back at work at Newcastle Racecoure’s September Spring Carnival.

Daughter Candice gets a leave pass to dress up on Ladies’ Day to enjoy the social scene on the other side of the fence.

She and her husband Tom won the Best Dressed Couple award (pictured) in the Fashions On The Field competition at last year’s Spring Carnival.

*Words John Curtis – June 4, 2023 – Pics Bradley Photos & supplied*