The racing industry is mourning the loss of Queanbeyan-based horse trainer Mr Neville ‘Nifty’ Layt, who passed away yesterday aged 76 following an illness.
“Neville was a hardworking trainer and a real character who was extremely popular and highly respected throughout our industry,” said Mr Peter V’landys AM, Racing NSW’s CEO.
“Neville knew his horses intimately and when they could win. He was every bit the horseman – Neville took out the inaugural Highway race at Royal Randwick in October 2015 with Grand Proposal.
“We would like to pass on our sincere condolences to Neville’s wife Barbie, his jockey son Adrian as well as his greater family and friends.
“In honour of Neville we have named the Highway race after him at Royal Randwick this Saturday.”
Neville’s most successful galloper was Karuta Queen whom he labelled the “once in a lifetime horse”.
Karuta Queen had 15 starts for the Layt stable winning six races and four placings including wins at her first four starts including two at Rosehill Gardens.
Her biggest victories were the 2011 Magic Millions on the Gold Coast, the Heritage Stakes at Rosehill Gardens and the Red Anchor Stakes at Moonee Valley.
Neville trained 256 winners and 594 placegetters with his last win being Propose a Toast at Canberra in mid-January.
He also had a penchant for the legendary singer Kenny Rogers, naming horses No When to Hold Em (three wins) and No What to Keep (three wins) – both lines from his hit song ‘The Gambler’.
Aside from Karuta Queen, some of his other well-performed horses were Kenquest (15 wins including four at Rosehill, one at Randwick and a Canterbury win), One More Grand (nine wins with two at Rosehill including The Rosebud), Exray (15 country wins), Grand Proposal (Randwick Highway winner), No Luck Needed (seven country wins), Steamy Beau (eight wins including one at Canterbury) and Cash for Cards (seven wins including one at Rosehill).
Funeral arrangements for Mr Layt are still being finalised.