A locally-written book about the history of bush racing in the Moree district is set to launch at Moree Picnic Races next weekend, thanks to the generosity of a number of supporters.
The Triangle, written by award-winning journalist Bill Poulos, chronicles the history of bush racing's Golden Triangle and the stories that have shaped picnic racing in the Moree district since the mid-1800s.
The timeline, starting in 1865, has entries for every year from 1900 through to 2018. There are also 24 feature articles, two of them written by Moree journalist Georgina Poole, and countless images and pictorials.
Mr Poulos has written about the people, horses and places that have made up picnic and registered racing at villages and townships across the vast north and north-west over the past 150 years.
"Apart from Moree, Mallawa, Talmoi and Mungindi, which all still race to this day, meetings were also held at Boomi, Boggabilla, Croppa Creek, Pallamallawa, Mungindi, Spring Plain, Terry Hie Hie, Gurley, Telleraga, Rowena, Bulyeroi and Bullarah," Mr Poulos said.
The Triangle has been described as a 'cracking read' by industry insiders.
Geoff Newling, Northern Daily Leader sports editor from 1988 to 2016, said The Triangle will take readers back to a golden age of bush racing in the north and north-west.
"It is a deluge of feature stories and well-researched information that will fascinate," Mr Newling said.
Mr Poulos, who generously donated his time and research to piece together the contents of the book, said it would not have been completed without the help of a lot of people, whose assistance large and small has been invaluable.
"Because of generous donations and grants from Moree Council, golfing greats The Desperates, all three picnic race clubs at Moree, Mallawa and Talmoi, and our local member Adam Marshall, we can publish The Triangle at no cost to the society," Mr Poulos said.
Moree Plains Shire Council donated $3,000, through the Public Donations Financial Assistance Program, to assist with the cost of publishing 100 limited edition hard-cover books and 500 soft-covers that will be sold at Moree, Mallawa and Talmoi picnic race meetings in the coming weeks.
Member for Northern Tablelands Adam Marshall also donated $5,000 to go towards the publishing and printing costs, along with golfing group The Moree Desperates who chipped in $5,500 and the Moree, Mallawa and Talmoi picnic race clubs which each contributed $1,500.
All proceeds from the sale of the The Triangle will be donated to Moree and District Historical Society, to be used to help transform the old Moree Lands Office on Frome Street into a local historical museum.
Mr Poulos says readers can feel comfortable knowing that the purchase price of The Triangle represents a complete profit for Moree and District Historical Society, with all money raised going a long way to getting its new home - and museum - operational.
"Apart from documenting the history of picnic racing and bush racing in the Moree district, the chief objective of writing and publishing the book was to raise money to help the society start renovating its new home, and hopefully sales from The Triangle will help," he said.
Moree mayor Katrina Humphries said Moree Plains Shire has a rich racing history and council was thrilled to be able to contribute to this great fundraiser for Moree and District Historical Society.
"Moree and District Historical Society has a goal to preserve this history, which will hopefully be treasured by many locals," she said.
"It was wonderful to see the Lands Office remain in the hands of the community and get a new life as a permanent home for the Historical Society, and potentially a local history museum.
"The Triangle is a great fundraiser to help the society get the museum up and running."
Moree Picnic Races jump from the gates on Saturday, May 25, with Mallawa racing two weeks later on Saturday, June 8.
Talmoi rounds out bush racing's Golden Triangle at Garah on Saturday, June 22.
Members from Moree and District Historical Society will be at all three meetings, selling and promoting The Triangle as well as other publications and memorabilia.
Mail orders will also be taken by Moree and District Historical Society after the book is launched. The book will also be available at numerous businesses and stores across the Moree Plains Shire.