Vale Ron Beak, a gentleman respected far and wide

Published 26 October 2022

Trainer Fred Smith (hat) with Callaghan Park winner Kashkar raced by Val and Ron Beak (right).

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Rockhampton and indeed Central Queensland racing has lost a grand stalwart with the passing on Tuesday night of Ron Beak.

Ron 85, had been battling a long illness but died in his sleep in his Rockhampton home. Val Beak, the love of Ron’s life and his wife of 59 years said his sudden passing while not totally unexpected was still quite a shock.

The couple moved to Rockhampton in recent years from their cattle property Dunluce outside of Bluff.

From a Central Queensland racing family dynasty, Ron and Vale Beak raced scores of good horses over their many decades in the racing industry.

“I believe Ron would have purchased and raced about 80 horses during his lifetime”, Val Beak recalled.

The majority Ron picked and bought as yearlings at Magic Millions on the Gold Coast and the Capricornia Sale in Rockhampton.

Ron Beak was widely regarded as a very astute judge of horseflesh and cattle and loved nothing more than to back his own judgement at auction sales. His top horses which he chose as yearlings included the long time Doomben track record holder Star Chat and Divine City.

The latter a mare by the Oaklands Stud based stallion of the time named Ferocity cost Ron just $7000 as a MM March Sale yearling in 2010. After Rockhampton wins, Divine City won three times in Brisbane accumulating about $250K in stakes wearing the Beak’s trademark gold, blue armbands and red cap racing silks.

In recent times during which his health had declined Ron Beak delighted in visiting his horses at their trainer’s stables in Rockhampton.

“We have five horses in training at the moment and one of those Valtino will start at Callaghan Park on Thursday as Ron was looking forward to that”, Val Beak said. Trained by Rockhampton’s Fred Smith, Valtino, a last start runaway winner at Emerald on October 8 is  engaged in the fourth race at  3.27pm. It races in the ownership of Ron and Val Beak and their grandson Jesse Beak.

Valtino was among the last yearlings Ron Beak purchased and he took great pleasure in knowing his grandson Jesse had inherited his love of racing.

Vale, Ron Beak a gentleman widely respected in both the racing and cattle industries which are all the poorer for his passing.

Photo: Trainer Fred Smith with Callaghan Park winner Kashkar raced by Val and Ron Beak (right).

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