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Consistent Hutchinsahead ofAmericans

FORMER Tasmanian speedway champion Tim Hutchins was the top qualifier after the second night of the Tasmanian v USA Sprintcar Shootout at Carrick last night after a consistent run through the heats, starting on pole position for the 30-lap final.
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Hutchins won Friday night’s 20-lap final, with carried over points to last night’s racing. He also scored another heat win last night.

Victorian Tony Moule also drove consistently last night to join Hutchins on the front row, with Launceston’s Jamie Bricknell and Smithton’s Mark House starting on the second row.

American ace Paul McMahan suffered a puncture in his first heat after failing to start in Friday night’s final, despite qualifying on pole position when engine dramas robbed him of some valuable points. Last night’s issues added to his dramas and saw him starting from grid 13 in the final.

Hobart teenager Shaun Dobson also had a drama-packed weekend after crashing in Friday night’s final and failing to finish, also crashing in his first heat last night, before winning his second and starting from grid 11 in the final.

On the same program last night, Hobart’s Andy Russell claimed back-to-back state titles with a hard-fought victory in the Tasmanian Modified Production Sedan Championship.

Qualifying on outside pole position for the 30-lap final, Russell took the early lead from pole qualified Brett Tatnell, of Launceston, with former multiple state champion Craig Willliams, teenager Jake Taurian and Trent Warren battling over the minor placings in a thrilling race.

Williams soon found a way past Tatnell and nine laps into the race challenged Russell for the lead with contact between the two sending Russell back to fifth as he slowed momentarily.

Tatnell, now second, took the lead from Williams 10 laps later with Russell storming around the outside to jump from fifth to second on the next lap in a brave move.

Russell hit the lead on lap 20, only to see Tatnell snatch it back on the next lap in an exciting battle, before Russell again prevailed with five to go.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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BHP fells job plan for forestry workers

BHP is seeking approval for its Olympic Dam site this year.Fly-in, fly-out mining jobs suggested by the state government as an alternative for forestry workers facing redundancy appear to have flown away for good.BHP Billiton has poured cold water on the idea that it would fly Tasmanian workers in and out of the state to service its expansion at its Olympic Dam mine in South Australia.
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The proposal was first flagged last year by the government as a solution to re-employing thousands of displaced forestry workers in the North and North-West.

A company spokeswoman has now said that the $30 billion expansion at its South Australian site had not yet been approved and that the company had no fly in, fly out plans.

“The first phase of the Olympic Dam project is in the feasibility stage and its progression into execution remains dependant on the completion of all required studies and BHP Billiton board approval to be sought in 2012.

“BHP Billiton has no plans to fly workers in and out of Tasmania for the Olympic Dam project.”

A federal Education, Employment and Workplace Relations spokesman said that the department had nothing to do with the proposal either.

In September, it was reported that BHP was considering using a private aircraft to routinely fly out and back Tasmanian workers given jobs at the mine.

The aircraft was expected to depart from the Burnie, Devonport and Launceston airports flying “large numbers” of workers to northern South Australia.

Last year, federal resources minister Martin Ferguson said that 4000 to 5000 jobs could be lost as a result of the transition out of native forests in Tasmania.

BHP is aiming to develop a new open pit copper, uranium and gold mine at the Olympic Dam site, increasing copper production from about 180,000 to 750,000 tonnes a year.

In October the South Australian and Commonwealth governments approved the environmental impact statement for the project.

“We are confident that, if approved, the project will generate significant new employment opportunities for South Australia in terms of direct employment, construction jobs, and additional flow-on employment across the state for many years to come,” BHP Billiton uranium president Dean Dalla Valle said.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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Baddeley puts horror show behind him

Aaron BaddeleyKAPALUA, Hawaii _ Aaron Baddeley refuses to write himself off in the US PGA Tour season opener despite falling eight shots off the pace after round one.
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Baddeley battled to a two-over par 75 in the Hyundai Tournament of Champions at the Plantation Course at Kapalua to be tied 23rd in a 27-man field, eight behind defending champion Jonathan Byrd.

Byrd, who shot a six-under-par 67, leads by one from Webb Simpson, Steve Stricker, Martin Laird and Michael Bradley.

But despite looking to have derailed his chances with back-to-back double bogeys on the third and fourth holes, Baddeley pointed to former US Open champion Graeme McDowell as proof he could still be a factor.

McDowell almost pulled off a famous victory last year with a final-round 62, falling just one shot shy of a play-off eventually won by Byrd.

“Anything can happen,” Baddeley said.

“I was surprised I made those mistakes because my game is in good order and it’s disappointing to start slow because even just a few under would be right in it but it’s early days.

“Graeme shot 11-under last year so it’s possible. No doubt you have to play well but while the scorecard doesn’t show it today I feel like I am playing well.”

Baddeley insisted he wouldn’t change his approach and get overly aggressive, claiming solid smart play would give him the best chance of making a positive move.

“You still have to play the golf course,” he said.

“This is a place where you can go low on a good day when the weather is calm and even on a day like today with a little wind you can shoot a good score as some of the guys showed.

“I don’t feel out of it yet, I just have to get some momentum and get rid of the mental errors.

“I can take some momentum from my late birdies and I’ll be out early tomorrow so it will be about getting off to a good start and building on it.”

Byrd is on track to continue a love affair defending champions have had in the event.

Gene Littler (1955-57) and Australian Stuart Appleby (2004-06) managed three successive victories.

There were also back-to-back victories for Jack Nicklaus (1963-64), Arnold Palmer (1965-66), Tom Watson (1979-80), Lanny Wadkins (1982-83) and Geoff Ogilvy (2009-10).

“I feel good around this course and feel like I know how to play it,” Byrd said.

“You just have to make smart decisions and you have to play more break than you think on most putts so experience helps.”

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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Jets use veterans in tag-team role

SUB: Michael Bridges at Jets training.ENGLISH veterans Francis Jeffers and Michael Bridges are set to play a tag-team role as the Jets try to crack their Wellington hoodoo tonight.
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Bridges, the 33-year-old striker who retired at the end of last season but has made a comeback, has been named to play in his second A-League match of the season.

But Jets coach Gary van Egmond said it was unlikely Bridges would partner Jeffers, 30, up front in what is expected to be a new 4-4-2 formation.

The more likely option is that Jeffers will start the match and Bridges will replace him midway through the second half, thereby sharing the role of target man with a speedster such as Ryan Griffiths, Jeremy Brockie or Ali Abbas.

‘‘I think they’re both quality players, but for us to try and impose ourselves further up the pitch I think it’s going to be a difficult one for Francis and Bridgey for a 90-minute game,’’ van Egmond said.

‘‘They can definitely sustain that for periods of the game, but maybe not for the whole of the game. So to get that balance of having somebody with a good work rate with a player of the ilk of a Francis or a Bridgey is something we need to balance.’’

Asked whether that meant he would start with Jeffers then substitute him with Bridges, van Egmond replied: ‘‘Yes. Either or – one of those types of moves, then obviously we’re looking at who we play closer to them.’’

The recall of Bridges means youngster Chris Payne makes way, after playing just 10 minutes in his Jets debut in last week’s 2-1 loss to Sydney.

Van Egmond said he was not unhappy with Payne’s contribution but Bridges had shown during a youth league hit-out last Friday that he was ready for higher company.

‘‘We just felt for this game it was best to bring Bridgey in,’’ he said. ‘‘He’s been doing really, really well … we looked at it at training and Bridgey has trained well.’’

Without skipper Jobe Wheelhouse and senior player Kasey Wehrman, Newcastle will be led by Brazilian import Tiago.

Van Egmond backed Tiago to lead by example.

‘‘He sees the whole game and he’s got the respect of all the players by the way he conducts himself,’’ he said.

Despite the presence of Tiago and the availability of central defensive partner Nikolai Topor-Stanley, who returns from a hamstring injury, van Egmond indicated Taylor Regan would retain a spot in the starting team, possibly as defensive midfielder.

Midfielder Ruben Zadkovich has four yellow cards, so one more booking will bring mandatory suspension.

But Van Egmond said he did not want Zadkovich to tone down his feisty playing style.

‘‘I think if you start making him aware of it, that might inhibit his natural game,’’ the coach said. ‘‘We don’t like people getting yellow cards or getting sent off unnecessarily. That comes down to your discipline and positioning.’’

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FISHING: Santa’s in wet weather gear

FISH OF THE WEEK: Mitchell ParkinsonIT looks like being a pretty damp Christmas with showers, light east-nor-east winds and swell up to a metre forecast up to Christmas Day.
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But with water temps on the rise and plenty of fish about, it won’t rain on angling opportunities this festive season.

Brent ‘‘Hammer’’ Hancock, from Nelson Bay Tackleworld, has a few tips for holiday anglers in Port Stephens over Christmas.

‘‘I’d fish the entrance to the Karuah River or Tilligerry Creek for flathead,’’ he said. ‘‘Find some structure – racks, rock walls, pylons – and drop plastics down the edge.

‘‘There’s also plenty of good sand whiting around.

‘‘Fish the sand flats from Soldiers Point to Jimmys Beach and back into Shoal Bay. Live tube or beach worms are the go. Surface poppers will work, too.

‘‘You’ll also got bream in the estuary. Definitely check out the oyster racks at Soldiers Points, the rock walls around North Arm Cove and the racks around the Myall River entrance.’’

Local beaches, particularly Fingal Spit, are producing good bream and whiting. Again, live worms are key.

Sisterly snaps

OFFSHORE, anglers have been getting snapper around the Sisters at Broughton Island in the early morning and late afternoons.

‘‘Anchor up with a berley trail and toss around some soft plastics,’’ Hammer said.

‘‘If you head out to the wider reefs – Big gibber, V and 21 – you’ll get snapper, kingies and trag after dark.’’

Ben Doolan got some nice reds between 3kg and 7kg this week off Little Island

Out on the Shelf there’s plenty of striped marlin around, especially places like the Carpark.

The boat Anarchy got two stripes last weekend. Greg Plunkett, aboard Lone Wolf, and his son had a potential Australian record on 10kg beside their boat on Wednesday. Unfortunately it broke off.

Early risers

GREG Hayman, from Tailermade Fishing Adventures and Singleton Fly Fishing Club, reports there’s good trag on the bite early morning north of Nobbys about five or six miles off Newcastle.

‘‘They tend to shut down after a few hours. There’s been some nice tailor on the bottom, too,’’ he said.

‘‘Water temps are warm on the top [21 degrees] but cold on the bottom [18].

‘‘There’s plenty of bait fish – slimeys and yellowtail – but the cold water is putting a lot of fish off the bite.

‘‘We’re still getting a few trevally, so that means it’s cool. There’s heaps of flathead up to 60cm around, a few ‘just legal’ snapper and small nannygai.’’

On the overflow

ALL this rain has filled dams and inland waterways throughout the Hunter and NSW. St Clair and Glenbawn are just about full and fishing well around the edges for bass.

Greg had a couple of days down in Lake Eucumbene in the Snowy Mountains and reports it’s so full he could use his boat for the first time in eight years.

‘‘What was usually a two-hour walk to get to my spot took me 15 minutes,’’ he said.

‘‘We had a blinder – got a couple of hundred trout between the four of us over a couple of days. Good fat healthy trout. Let most of them go.

‘‘Jindabyne is firing too and the rivers around Mt Selwyn. Word out of Lake Windermere [down near Jarvis Bay] is that yellow belly are going good.

‘‘There’s been some nice rainbows [trout] caught up Thompson Creek Dam at Lithgow. The water is up and when it is the fish gorge and grow very rapidly.’’

Freshen up

ARRON Flitt, from Toronto Bait and Tackle, reports Lake Macquarie anglers have caught bonito and rat kings around Moon Island.

‘‘There’s good squid in the channel,’’ Arron said yesterday.

‘‘Guys have been arming up in there and heading out to chase kings.

‘‘The Yamashita jig in the pink or orange colours has been working well for squid.

‘‘Bream have been biting on fresh mullet. There’s plenty of whiting around local sandflats in the lake.

‘‘Live bloodworms are good. There’s always flathead about in the lake, and they’ve also been plentiful outside around the 46-metre depth.’’

Arron’s big Christmas fishing tip is to stick with fresh bait.

‘‘Toronto Bait and Tackle sources theirs straight from the Sydney Fish Markets,’’ he said.

Papers, Tiger

ONE of the great pleasures of Christmas holidays is going fishing with family and friends. And one of the great pains can be copping a fine for not having your recreational fishing licence.

Fisheries will be patrolling waterways through the summer ensuring paperwork is in order and rules and regulations are being followed, so do the right thing and get it all sorted.

A $200 on-the-spot fine applies for fishing without a current fishing licence, unless exempt.

In addition, a penalty of $75 applies if fishers do not have the licence in their immediate possession.

You can get your licence from most bait and tackle shops, some Kmart stores and your local Fisheries office.

They’re also available online at licence.nsw.gov.au or by calling 1300369365.

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