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Racing stalwart dies

By Don Farmer

[email protected]

Farming and horse racing in Wairarapa lost one of their staunchest supporters with the death of John Jury on Saturday.

Mr Jury, who had been ill for some time, had a farming pedigree that reached back to the founding of the region.

His family was the Jurys of Ponatahi who settled there and have farmed there from virtually the first days of European settlement through to the present day.

Apart from his farming interests at Ponatahi – Mr Jury sold the sheep and beef property Mahinui to another family member in March this year – Mr Jury farmed in Greytown.

He had a deep love of horses both as a breeder and owner of thoroughbreds and during his long association with racing had the pleasure of owning a string of winners.

A loyal owner for trainer Alby MacGregor, the pair jointly raced the brilliant galloper Fritzy Boy, winner of 15 races and $868,000 in stakes.

Wins included the Wanganui Guineas, the South Island triple crown and the Group 1 Mudgway Partsworld Stakes at Hastings.

Other successful horses Mr Jury raced included Superquad, Supertrac, Fritzy Girl, Jack’s Boy and Hoover Boy.

Mr MacGregor said yesterday that Mr Jury had not only been a loyal owner but also a “great bloke and a really good friend”.

“He was a true-blue farmer.

“Sometimes we would be driving to the races, maybe to Hawke’s Bay, and he would be giving a running commentary of the state of farms we passed.”

Mr MacGregor said the two spent a lot of time together with Mr Jury popping into his home practically every Friday afternoon “to talk racing, of course, and to have a couple of beers”.

A funeral service for Mr Jury will be held in Greytown tomorrow followed by his burial at Greytown Cemetery.

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Emily Ireland
Emily Ireland
Emily Ireland is Wairarapa’s Local Democracy Reporter, a Public Interest Journalism role funded through NZ On Air. Emily has worked at the Wairarapa Times-Age for seven years and has a keen interest in council decision-making and transparency.

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