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Doug Hewitt set to make his mark in Queensland

13 February 2024

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Albion Park | Albion Park Harness Racing Club | 5:00 PM


D: Doug Hewitt
D: Lola Weidemann
D: Kelli Dawson

By Jordan Gerrans

After successfully working under his father Bernie’s leadership in recent years, Doug Hewitt felt the time was right to go out on his own accord and prepare his own team of pacers in the Sunshine State.

Doug has recently relocated to Queensland and has set up shop at Plainland, which is based west of Brisbane.

Doug’s move north from regional NSW follows that of his sister Gemma who made the shift up in the back end of 2021.

Gemma – a year older than her brother Doug - has quickly made her mark north of the border over the last couple of seasons as a consistent trainer and driver.

The 30-year-old Doug has managed his dad’s stable for the last eight years and regularly prepared the team as Bernie travelled interstate to Victoria and Queensland to campaign their top-level horses through the carnivals.

Doug notched just the second-ever winner in his own name as a trainer when Infinity Beach got the cash last Friday at Albion Park.

He is a two-time Group 1-winning reinsman in the sulky.

“I have done a fair bit of training but just not in my name and the way it was working back home, we just kept it going that way in Bernie’s name even when I owned the horses myself,” Doug said.

“That is another thing about the move to Queensland, to get out there and get my name out there a little bit more as a trainer as well as a driver.

“I am hoping to pick up as many drives as horses to train as well. If the opportunity arises to take on more drives, I will take that as well.”

Trainer and driver Doug Hewitt at Albion Park last week.

The Hewitt clan have been big players in recent Queensland Constellations Carnivals with horses such as Ripp and Jewel Melody.

Doug brought up four of his own from Bathurst and has quickly acquired a number of yearlings to break in as he fills out his Plainland stable.

Being based at Plainland, Doug says he is finding it easier to set up his week from a training perspective with consistent race meetings around South East Queensland within much closer driving distance compared to across NSW.

“It has always been something that my wife Casey and I thought we may do down the track,” Doug said.

“It just came a time that we wanted to have a bit of a crack for ourselves.

“We have both lived in Queensland before and loved it and the way that racing is going up here – it is going ahead in leaps and bounds – we just wanted to be a part of that. Casey is from up this way and I lived up here for a bit and we always said that we wanted to come back.

“It was one of those things, we just rip the band-aid off and we thought we may as well go and have a crack while we are still young enough, see how we end up.”

Gemma Hewitt driving a winner in Queensland.

The multiple Group 1-winner as a driver took three to Albion Park last Friday and scored with the last of the trio as Infinity Beach claimed victory in the last of nine events on the program over 1660 metres by almost four metres.

Infinity Beach was one of the original team that made the journey from regional NSW.

“It got the monkey off the back pretty quick,” Doug said.

“When you move to a new place with a new track with a new set-up, you pull your hair out thinking if you are doing it all right.

“The team that I have raced so far has all been pretty competitive and consistent. They have shown they are not far off the money and we can start ticking a few of as we go along.”

After grabbing his first training and driving winner in his new venture last Friday, Doug is keen to keep the ball rolling at ‘The Triangle’ on Wednesday evening.

Doug Hewitt claimed his first training and driving wins in the Sunshine State when Infinity Beach was successful at Albion Park on Friday.

He heads to the Peninsula-based club with Bold Cowboy and I Am Marquez from his team as well as two drives for another Doug in Doug Lee.

Bold Cowboy has drawn nicely for his 1780 metre assignment.

“I have only had him for two weeks, I got him off Donny Smith and he thought the horse was just plateauing,” Doug Hewitt said of Bold Cowboy.

“I know the owners from back home out Dubbo way and they wanted me to have a crack with him before he comes home.

“I was looking for outside horses anyway and he has stepped up a little bit in the last few weeks. Donny thought he needed a paddock and a swim, which has brightened him up a little bit.

“From the one, that is the best barrier he has had in a while so with his good gate speed, hopefully he can make the most of it and be there in the finish.”