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TOM NYHAN - Horseman


The death occurred recently of Tommy Nyhan, who was 90 and father of former top line driver, Bobby Nyhan.

Although he didn't reach the heights of some members of the Nyhan family, Tommy was notable in certain areas of horsemanship. He grew up in the Woodville area and made his mark as a show rider and very good trackwork rider for some of the top galloping stables. One of the horses he handled while in the area was Watcher, a smart Grattan Loyal mare who became the fourth dam of Master Musician.

He moved to Christchurch, worked for Jack Kennerly, handled the great Harold Logan in trackwork, and he ran a dairy shop until he could afford to buy the Weedons stable of Noel Berkett. Two of the best horses he trained were Tribal Song, a stallion who could have gone further than he did, and Bound To Be. He never had a big team. Those he turned out were always in picture book condition.

"He was a real old style trainer," recalled Bobby. "It was an important thing in his life to prepare a horse and have it looking special." He took the same pride in himself. He always wore a tie, and few could match the polish Tommy put on his shoes.

Credit: Mike Grainger writing in HRWeekly 16Sep98

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