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US bombs Syria: Transcript of Donald Trump’s statement in full

US President Donald Trump. Photo: Pete MarovichUS President Donald Trump has made a statement after the US military launched a missile strike in Syria.


Below is a full transcript of his speech:

“My fellow Americans, on Tuesday Syrian dictatorBashar al-Assad launched a horrible chemical weapons attack on innocent civilians.

Using a deadly nerve agent, Assad choked out the lives of helpless men, women and children.

It was a slow and brutal death for so many. Even beautiful babies were cruelly murdered in this very barbaric attack. No child of God shouldever suffer such horror.

Tonight Iordered a targeted military strike on theairfield in Syria from where the chemical attack was launched.

It is in this vital national security interest of the United Statesto prevent and deter the spread and use of deadly chemical weapons.

There can be no dispute that Syria used banned chemical weapons, violated its obligations under the chemicalweapons convention, and ignored the urging of the UN SecurityCouncil

Years of previous attempts at changing Assad’s behaviour have all failed and failed very dramatically.

As a result, the refugee crisis continues to deepen and the region continues to destabilise, threatening the United Statesand its allies.

Tonight I call on all civilised nations to join us in seeking to end the slaughter and bloodshed in Syria, and also to end terrorism of all kinds and all types.

We ask for God’s wisdom as we face the challenge of our very troubled world.

Wepray for the lives of the wounded and for the souls of those who have passed, and we hope that as long as America stands for justice, then peace and harmony will in the end prevail

Good night and God bless America and the entire world.Thank you.”


How to avoid retiring with insufficient super

Last year, after reading more advice on how individual women could overcome the gap in retirement savings, the Australia Institute’s chief economist Dr Richard Denniss decided to write some advice of his own.


To avoid the pitfall of retiring with insufficient superannuation, he recommends women follow these four rules:

1. Don’t go into caring professions. Do not be a nurse, or work in childcare, or do a job where you help other people, because we will pay you low wages.

2. Don’t take time out of work while you are young. Do you not understand the way compound interest works? If you do take time out of work while you are young, it will have a catastrophic effect on your retirement income.

3. Don’t take time out of work to care for your parents, or your partner’s parents, in your 50s. These are your peak earning years, so you need to work as long as you can and put as much into super as possible.

4. Do not be a woman. Because we will pay you roughly 17 per cent less than a man for similar work.

It is starkly divergent from the proliferous advice women receive about their financial security: that if they were more financially literate or made better decisions or picked a better super account, they could minimise the retirement gap.

“If you read some of the advice aimed at women, you could be forgiven for thinking retirement income is like a nice pair of shoes and it’s your job to hunt down a bargain,” Denniss says.

The reality, he says, is that no information campaign, decision-making tool or new website can assist women overcome the structural flaws in our superannuation system.

The gap between what men and women retire with in Australia is incontrovertible.

A report by the Senate’s economic committee last year found that one in three Australian women retire with nothing at all, and that on average men end their working lives with superannuation balances twice as large as women’s.

According to the Workplace Gender Equality Agency, the average Australian man retires with $197,054 while the average woman retires with just $104,734. This represents a 46.6 per cent gap.

It is exacerbated by the superannuation tax concessions, which the Senate report concludes are poorly targeted. Men, in aggregate, receive double the superannuation tax concessions as women.

“The existence of super tax concessions is heavily stacked against women,” Denniss says. “It’s inequitable, and because women are more likely to be poor it’s particularly inequitable for women.”

As it stands, low-income earners pay more tax on their retirement savings than they do on their ordinary income. By contrast, high-income earners pay far less tax on their superannuation contributions than on their salaries.

Poorer people effectively pay a penalty tax on their super while the wealthiest 5 per cent of the population reaps more than $10 billion a year in tax concessions.

Women, who comprise the majority of the 3.6 million Australians who earn less than $37,000 a year, bear the brunt of this double whammy.

It makes the emphasis on women’s financial skills a little galling to Felicity Reynolds, the chief executive of the Mercy Foundation.

“It is a generalisation, but I would suggest that there are many women who are very, very good at managing a very small amount of money, and I think that gets lost,” Reynolds says.

Increasingly, she sees women being offered educational programs rather than solutions for affordable housing and structural inequities.

“These women could teach courses on saving money,” Reynolds says. “It’s less about a lack of financial literacy and more about a lack of finances due to structural inequity.”

Denniss agrees. “The focus on education is the perfect political strategy if you want to maintain the status quo,” he says. “Not only do the campaigns further confuse people, they are effective in making individuals blame themselves for the situation rather than question the whole system. We need to fundamentally change super and retirement income in Australia.”

Tax concessions cost $29.6 billion a year and the vast majority of those flow to high-income earners. Treasury estimates suggest that tax concessions given to the wealthiest 1 per cent of income earners is far more expensive than simply paying them the age pension.

As a case in point, Denniss cites the Tax Office’s revelation that there is a self-managed super fund with a balance of $100 million.

“If the account holder is over 65, they would be able to draw down $10 million a year and pay zero tax on it. Zero,” Denniss says.

How providing a tax break to a person who would never have been eligible for the age pension is supposed to “save money” is unclear. Regardless, a woman who spends her life earning the minimum wage is unable to access a similar tax break.

So if you are a woman looking to prepare for retirement, it’s wise to examine the fees your super manager charges and look to making additional contributions. But don’t be fooled into believing that through smart choices you can overcome the retirement gap between men and women.

For that, you’ll either need to follow Denniss’ advice or lobby for reform.

Georgina Dent is a journalist, editor and TV commentator with a keen focus on women’s empowerment and gender equality.


East End hit with pro-Supercars graffiti

East End graffiti spree HIT: A wall at the Joy Cummings Centre is one of several locations in the Newcastle East End that was vandalised this week. Picture: Supplied.


PROTEST: “NO V8” graffiti on a wall of Fort Scratchley.

FURIOUS: Forts Scratchley Historical Society members Frank Carter and Graham Postlethwaite at the site of the partially-cleared graffiti on Monday. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

NOT HERE: East End resident Mark Burslem with his protest banner about the November Supercars race. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

SIMILAR: Anti-Supercars graffiti on the facade of the United Service Club.

SIMILAR: Anti-Supercars graffiti on the facade of the United Service Club.


facebookSHAREtwitterTWEETemailwhatsappIN what appears to be an act of retaliation the East End has been hit with pro-Supercars graffiti.

On April 2 it was discovered that vandals had spray painted the historic United Services Club in Watt Street with anti-Supercars graffiti. In the days since there have been several reports of vandalism attacks on the East End.

The Newcastle 500 Supercars Australia event is due to be held in the East End of Newcastle in November. The event has been met with strong opposition from many residents living track-side.

The most recent act of vandalism wasdiscovered on Thursday when a wall at the Joy Cummings Centre was emblazoned with “East Enderz love V8 Benderz.”

Pro-Supercar graffiti has also been discovered in Telford Street, Zaara Street, Fort Drive, Foreshore Park and the lane-way between Scott and Alfred Streets, according to residents.

East End resident Cath Whelan allegedthe vandalism was part of an ongoing campaign “bysome pro-V8 race supporters to harass the East End community”.

“We are being unfairly targeted for daring to question the location of this motor race through our suburban streets,” she said.

“We can only hope that the perpetrators are caught red-handed soon.”

Newcastle East End Residents Group secretary Joan Browning said her group was careful to operate within the law to express its opposition to the location of the race.

“We are doing our best to get our point across legally,” she said. “Any defacing of anybody’s property is unjustified, it’s illegal and it’s wrong.”

Meanwhile, Supercars can expect a call fromCessnock City Council.

The council said itwants to take full advantage of the Newcastle 500 to “show off the Hunter Valley wine country to the influx of spectators the V8 Supercars event is sure to attract”.

Cessnock City Councillor Jay Suvaal said the race was an opportunity for the tourism industry and it would be calling Supercars to invite the motor racing team to visit the local government area.

“We know this event is going to be absolutely huge, attracting thousands of people from across Australia,” Cr Suvaal said.

The race will be staged from November 24-26.


‘Urgent meeting’: Chappypie China Time plans in doubt

Sydney residents wanting to experience the majesty of imperial China may have to continue to travel further than Wyong, following the seeming disintegration of plans for a Chinese theme-park on the Central Coast.


The company behind the mooted “Chappypie China Time” theme park at Warnervale has apparently failed to make contractual payments for the purchase of land for the theme park.

And the Central Coast Council, which had contracted to sell the land to Australia China Theme Park, issued a mysterious statement this week saying it was seeking an “urgent meeting” with the company.

Should plans for the project irretrievably break down, it would be an ignominious and wasteful end to a scheme that at one stage promised a $500 million development for the region.

The project had been enthusiastically backed by the former mayor of Wyong Doug Eaton.

But it would be an entirely predictable outcome for the theme park’s many critics.

“We said this from the outset,” said the Labor Member for Wyong, David Harris.

Mr Harris said there was no evidence the company behind the project had experience delivering something of the size it was promising. Nor was the land zoned for the sort of use they envisaged.

Indeed, the director of Australia China Theme Park, Bruce Zhong, has previously made a virtue of his lack of experience. “This is a world’s first-ever project,” he told Fairfax Media in 2014.

But Mr Zhong has not responded to an emailed request for comment.

Nor has Mr Eaton, whose wife was previously revealed to have shares in a company part-owned by Australia China Theme Park. Mr Eaton has said his wife had no knowledge of how she came to acquire those shares.

Another curious aspect has been the advertisement in China, on social networking app WeChat, of the potential to invest in the project and receive permanent residency visas.

The latest development comes after the former Wyong Council last February contracted with Australia China Theme Park to sell it two parcels of land totalling 15.7 hectares near the Pacific Highway at Warnervale.

The company paid $300,000 deposits for each parcel, and was to settle the first parcel for $3 million plus GST this February.

The Central Coast Council then gave the company an extension until the end of March. But the Council’s statement this week suggests the Australia China Theme Park has missed that deadline.

The council said that the contracts contained confidentiality clauses and as such it could not comment, but that it had “sought an urgent meeting with representatives of ACTP to discuss these contracts”.

Bob Graham, a former independent councillor on Wyong Council, which has since been merged into the Central Coast Council and placed under the control of an administrator, said the project never made any sense.

Mr Graham said the council-owned land at Warnervale should instead have been used for a business park, which could already be employing people.


An elegant affair in the Blue Mountains

Live music … part of the deal at the Hydro Majestic High TeaI guess that I used to think of the Blue Mountains as an obstacle — one that I rarely stopped at and even more rarely enjoyed, but one which I had to confront on each of many trips over the years between Sydney and the Central West of New South Wales.


But certainly no longer. What used to be an impediment has become a much favoured haunt — an avenue lined with sumptuous food, fine accommodation and unforgettable scenery, both in dappled sunlight and swirling, sometimes quite eerie, mist.

View from the Hydro Majestic’s dining room … the mist rolls in … or is out?

That appeal was driven home a couple of weeks ago when myself and the Woman with Altitude were hosted by Ralf Bruegger, the general manager of the Escarpment Group, which has in its portfolio the Hydro Majestic, Lilianfels, Echoes and Parklands in the Blue Mountains, and has recently expanded to take on The Convent in the Hunter Valley.

It all started with a rather decadent High Tea in the Hydro’s Wintergarden restaurant watching the mist swirling around the Megalong Valley.

Ralf and his team are to be congratulated on their attention to detail in so tastefully and authentically restoring what is certainly a more-than-century-old Blue Mountains icon. They have done the region and, indeed, Australia a great service.

We opted to share servings of the traditional Wintergarden offering and the more radical Eastern High Tea, accompanied by flutes of French bubbly.

Both dishes were served on three-tiered stands laden with tempting savoury and sweet treats.

Gorgeous food … the Hydro Majestic’s Eastern High Tea (left) and Wintergarden High Tea

It was there that we abandoned the Woman with Altitude’s car, not realising that she had left on the lights and was rapidly flattening the battery, and shared my car to Katoomba, where, because accommodation at Echoes was booked out, we had to stay at luxurious Lilianfels. Damn!

Lilianfels was established by Sir Frederick Darley, sixth Chief Justice of NSW, as a family retreat after he purchased land at Katoomba’s Echo Point in 1888.

It epitomises accommodation in the grandest of manner. It is elegant and its silver-service restaurant, appropriately named Darley’s, delivers food totally worthy of the surrounds.

There’s absolutely nothing ‘mini’ about our Mini Mini Saddle Suite, with its elegant décor, absolute king-size comfort and separate lounge and bedroom.

A comfortable resting place … the Mini Mini Saddle Suite at Lilianfels

The quality of the food at Echoes — and it really is next door, well within walking distance — certainly matched the luxury of our suite at Lilianfels.

We tried entrées of crispy soft-shell crab served with pan-seared scallops and som-tom salad; and pan-fried quail with kale, shimeji mushrooms, and tamarind-and-honey glaze … an absolutely delicious pair of starters eagerly washed down with glasses of crisp riesling from Bests in Victoria’s Great Western district.

One of the delicious entrées at Echoes … soft-shell crab with pan-seared scallops

These were followed by two of the best main courses we have recently tried: free-range chicken wrapped in jamon, and served with sweet potato and quinoa rosti, braised fennel, wild mushroom and truffle veloute; and char-grilled angus tenderloin, served with onion jam and baby vegetables grown in the garden of the Escarpment Group’s nearby Parklands property.

Both dishes were simply sensational, with the velvety veloute sauce an absolute stand-out.

I’m a great fan of reds from France’s Rhone Valley, which I reckon offers better value than the more esteemed Bordeaux and Burgundy regions, and the Perrin & Fils blend of grenache, syrah and mourvedre certainly did more than justice to the exceptional tenderloin.

And similarly a glass of De Iulius chardonnay from the Hunter Valley to the chicken.

It was a very fine meal in a beautiful room, tended by the most efficient, friendly staff … and full marks to the Hydro’s handyman, who had no trouble jump-starting the Woman with Altitude’s car the following morning.

John Rozentalsis a freelance writer whose passions aretravel, food and wine. He lives at Molong in the Central West of NSW, from where he hostsOz Baby Boomers, a lifestyle-resource for mature Australians, and Molong Online.


Sheep versus dogs; only one survives

SHOCKING LOSSES: Landholders in the Upper Hunter are faced with problems from escalating wild dog attacks. They say the dogs are leaving National Park and State Forests in search of food.Upper Hunter farmers are no longer in-charge of managing their properties that role has been snatched from them by a motleybunch of vicious ferals.


Wild dogs are now in charge ofareas east and west of Scone particularly in the headwaters of the Hunter River –Tomalla, Hunter Springs and Moonan Flat.

These eastern fall areas were once home to tens of thousands of sheep, in fact at one stage, the historic Belltrees property near Gundy ran 100,000 sheep.

Today commercial numbers of sheep are only found onsix properties between Scone and the Barrington Tops and the reason for this change in landuse is simply the impact of wild dogs.

No matter what the landholders do the attacks on their flocks areworsening and they are being forced to run cattle on land that is really not suited to beef production.

This is happening at a time of record returns for wool and fat lambs which just adds to the frustration of thefarmers.

On the prowl

Moonan Flat producer Gavin MacCallum said the vast majority of the land in his districtwas ideally suited to sheep production.

“But we have been forced out of sheep because of the pressure from wild dogs. No matter what we do their numbers increase and so do the attacks,” he said.

He, like his neighbours, hashad a gut full of asking for help and their pleas being ignored.

Fairfax Mediahas been told by a number of landholders the dogs are coming out of National Parks and State Forests.

“We weretold by staff from the National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) that they have caught, on camera, photographs of 40 dogs in just one week,” said Nathan Mamone, Tomalla.

Mr Mamone used to run 3000 sheep on his property, located one kilometrefrom Barrington Tops National Park, today that number is slashed and he runs cattle and works off-farm all thanks to dog attacks.

“Its just so depressing to get out each morning and see your sheep ravaged,” he said.

At Moonan Brook, Neville Hayne, “Castlesprings” says his battle with wild dogs takes up 70-80 per cent of his time.

“I am not spending anytime working on the farm I am just chasing dogs all day. I’ve gone through three quad bikes trying to control them, we are being chewed out by dogs,” said an exasperated Mr Hayne .

His wool cheque is already down $15,000 this year due to sheep losses from dog attacks.

He was critical of the NPWS use of perimeter mound baitingsaying it doesn’t work as dogs don’t like digging up meat.

“Its a complete failure and the situation is getting worse each year,” he said.

Mr Hayne said the dogs were also getting bolder and therefore more dangerous over time.

Across the valley near Merriwa Peter Campbell said dogs were a problem with landholders near Goulburn River National Park.

“As responsible landholders we have to control feral pests and weeds on our land but it appears NPWS don’t have to,” he said.

“We want managers of all public lands to adopt ourattitude when it comes to managing feral pests. These dogs will be harming native fauna as well as livestock.”

Mr Campbell said after lengthy negotiations landholders were able to get professional trappers into the Goulburn River National Park earlier this year.

“But it was at their costs and it took a long time to gain NPWS approval. The trappers caught six dogs,” said.

“Its was a great result but really should landholders have to pay for the management of the park.”

The six joined another 14 caught last year with Mr Campbell saying farmers were already reporting less attacks on their sheep thanks to the campaign.

“Imagine if we all worked together what could be achieved,” he said.

Anecdotal reports say wild dogs are now attacking calves near Barrington Tops National Park something landholders have long predicted.

Many frustrated and angry farmers are hopingthe formation of a funded trapper program run by Hunter Local Land Services will make an impact on the dog problem.

We want the NPWS to join this funded program so we are all working together for the betterment of the whole community, said Mr Campbell.

A sentiment supported by Mr MacCallum who along with others producers is sick and tired of talking to NPWS and getting no support.

“Parks are our neighbours but we are bearing the burnt of their poor management and that is so unfair. Why can a neighbour ruin your livelihood,”? asked Mr MacCallum.

Hunter LLS, Australian Wool Innovation (AWI) and mining companies have pledged funding for the trapper program that will start next financial year.

Mining giant Glencore will be funding $150,000 over three years in partnership with Hunter LLS to support wild dog control efforts across the Hunter.

“As part of our operations, we work closely with landholders across the Hunter on a daily basis so we understand the significant losses being caused by wild dogs,” said Glencore’sCommunity Relations Manager Craig Strudwick

Wild dogs caught on camera in the eastern fall district at the headwaters of the Hunter River.

“This funding will be in addition to the co-ordinated work we’re undertaking with neighbouring property owners at all of our sites to control wild dogs in the region.”

NPWS, spokesperson said last weekNPWS received a request from Hunter LLS, to contribute toa new wild dog program being developed for the Upper Hunter.

“Wild dog controlis a keypriority for NPWS in thisregion, and we will continue to work cooperativelywith LLS to identify opportunities to support the new program,” they said.

NPWS undertakes both strategic and reactive wild dog control programsat Barrington Tops National Park & State Conservation Area, Mt. Royal, Curracabundi, Goulburn River, Wollemi and Yengo National Parks, Camerons Gorge and Ben Halls Gap Nature Reserves, and other reserves across the region.

Techniques used by NPWS include ground and aerial baiting, M44 ejectors and trapping.


View from the top: North America’s tallest house is on the market

World’s most expensive home finished but still emptyAustralia’s changing skyline: Apartment towers surpassing recordsWorld’s new tallest pair of towers headed for Cambodia


For those who enjoy heights, but don’t want the hassle of sharing a supertall building with other residents ??? and who might enjoy, perhaps, some significant bragging rights ??? the perfect property is up for sale in the USA.

It’s the Falcon’s Nest in Prescott, Arizona. It’s the tallest house in North America, its 37 metres of height made up by 10 storeys, and at one point had the honour of being the tallest house in the world. Sadly, it’s now been beaten out by the 173 metre tall, $1 billion Antilla mansion in Mumbai, India.

North America’s tallest home – the ‘Falcon’s Nest’ in Arizona. Photo: Lauren Schleifer/falconnesttower广州桑拿

In fairness, it’s also dwarfed by the Thumb Butte, the 1985-metre volcanic plug it’s sitting next to. But you can’t buy that for $US1.5 million ($1.98 million), which is the current asking price.

It was designed by an architect, Sukumar Pal, for his family, and built in 1994 for around $US4 million. Shaped a bit like a chimney, it’s got three bedrooms, four bathrooms, 575 square metres of living space, a very fancy 185 square-metre solarium and a hydraulic glass elevator to shuttle the lucky residents up and down, with an entrance at the garage level.

Photo: Lauren Schleifer/falconnesttower广州桑拿

It’s got quite a small footprint, both physically, about 92 square metres, and environmentally, as the listing with Sotheby’s describes it as exemplifying “passive solar technologies as well as other unique & alternative power, heating & cooling source”.

It’s not the first time it’s come onto the market ??? it was listed for $US2.8 million in 2015, so the current price is a bit of a bargain.

In comparison, Australia’s tallest house, the Girvan House in the Hunter region of NSW, is about 30 metres high and also comprises of 10 storeys. It cost more than $2 million to build, according to the Newcastle Herald, and was put up for sale in 2012 with a price of $1.75 million.

Girvan House, in NSW. Photo: Newcastle Herald


Five highlights in your travel weekApril 7

The Langham … offering ‘Easter Escape’ packages in Melbourne.Until Sunday 30 April, guests can hop along to The Langham, for the exclusive Melbourne hotel’s ‘Easter Escape’ package.


The offer includes a extras such as buffet breakfast for two, a chocolate Easter surprise, complimentary valet parking and unlimited use of the hotel’s pool, pool deck, spa, sauna, steam rooms and gymnasium.

Bookings that include children also include a chocolate treat on each day of the stay, a Sing (the musical) drinking cup, a complimentary in-room viewing of Sing, and one Mini-Melba diner aged nine years and under dines for free at lunch per paying adult at Melba restaurant (with the exception of Easter Sunday).

The Easter Escape package is available from $355 per room per night.

Phone 1800 858 663 广州桑拿论坛langhamhotels广州桑拿 Peppers Craigieburn … could be home for a NSW Southern Highlands golfing getaway.

Peppers is offering a ‘Stay and Play’ golfing getaway in the NSW Southern Highlands.

Stay at Peppers Craigieburn from $245 per night in an Elms Wing Room or at Peppers Manor House from $269 per night in a Highland Queen Room, including breakfast for two.

Guests will receive a golf pass which contains six nine-hole vouchers to redeem at the eight participating local courses from Sunday to Friday.

Phone 1300 987 600广州桑拿论坛peppers广州桑拿广州桑拿论坛 Kangaroo Island … one of nature’s extraordinary paradises.

SeaLink has launched a range of one-to-five-night Kangaroo Island ‘Wilderness Trail’ on a 61-kilometre walking trail across one of the most rugged, remote and spectacular coastlines in Australia.

All packages include ferry travel, accommodation and coach transfers. Trails can be walked independently or with a guide in a small group.

The six-day package, for instance, is priced from $465 per adult twin-share and incorporates the full 61 kilometres of new and upgraded trails over five days, with highlights including Flinders Chase National Park, Kelly Hill Conservation Park and the Cape Bouguer Wilderness Protection Area.

广州桑拿论坛sealink广州桑拿广州桑拿论坛 Tali Wiru … includes an evening of fine dining on a remote sand dune in Central Australia.

Voyages Ayers Rock Resort’s exclusive evening event in the desert, Tali Wiru (meaning ‘beautiful dune’ in local Pitjantjatjara) includes an evening of fine dining on a remote sand dune overlooking Uluru and the distant domes of Kata Tjuta, with this season’s menu celebrating the ancient flavours of Indigenous Australia.

Guests enjoy champagne and canapes at sunset, accompanied by the sounds of a didgeridoo, followed by a four-course table d’hote menu with matched premium Australian wines.

A storyteller shares tales of Indigenous culture and the southern night sky and the evening ends with a port, cognac or native wattleseed-infused hot chocolate around the campfire.

Tali Wiru runs daily until October 15 and is priced at $345 per person, which is fully inclusive of return hotel transport, full menu, matched wines and entertainment.

Phone 1300 134 044广州桑拿论坛ayersrockresort广州桑拿广州桑拿论坛. The Barossa Valley … one of Australia’s most famous wine regions. Image courtesy of Barsossa & Beyond

Cruise Express has blended four of Australia’s major wine regions into a new cruise tour next March, spanning the continent from east to west.

The hosted, 10-night ‘Voyage to the Vineyards – East to West’ expedition from Melbourne to Perth includes visits to Victoria’s Goulburn Valley, South Australia’s Barossa Valley and also the Margaret River and Swan Valley wine regions in Western Australia.

A day trip on the heritage train, The Spirit of Progress, and wine-paired lunches are also featured in the itinerary aboard the Golden Princess.

Bookings made by April 30 will receive a bonus upgrade from a premium balcony cabin to a mini-suite.

Prices start at $3990 per person twin-share, including two nights accommodation in Melbourne and one in Perth.

Phone 1300 764 509广州桑拿论坛cruiseexpress广州桑拿广州桑拿论坛


Pro-Supercars graffiti discovered in Newcastle East End

GRAFFITI: A shed at Foreshore Park was hit by vandals this week during a pro-Supercars spray painting spree. East End residents have described the attack as an ongoing campaign. IN what residents regard as an act of retaliation, Newcastle’s East End has been hit with pro-Supercars graffiti.


Last Sundayit was discovered that vandals had spray-painted the historic United Services Club in Watt Street with anti-Supercars graffiti. In the days since there have beenreports of vandalism attacks on the East End in multiple locations.

The Newcastle 500 Supercars Australia event is due to be held in the East End of Newcastle in November. The event has been met with strong opposition from many residents living trackside.

The most recent act of vandalism wasdiscovered on Thursday when a wall at the heritage significant Joy Cummings Centre in Scott Street was emblazoned with “East Enderz love V8 Benderz”.

Pro-Supercar graffiti has also been discovered in Telford Street, Nobbys Road, Zaara Street, Fort Drive, Parnell Place, Foreshore Park and the lane-way between Scott and Alfred streets, according to residents.

East End resident Cath Whelan allegedthe vandalism was part of an ongoing campaign “bysome pro-V8 race supporters to harass the East End community”.

“We are being unfairly targeted for daring to question the location of this motor race through our suburban streets,” she said.

“We can only hope that the perpetrators are caught red-handed soon.”

Newcastle East End Residents Group secretary Joan Browning said her group was careful to operate within the law to express its opposition to the location of the race.

“We are doing our best to get our point across legally,” she said. “Any defacing of anybody’s property is unjustified, it’s illegal and it’s wrong.”

Meanwhile, Supercars can expect a call fromCessnock City Council. The council said itwanted to take full advantage of the Newcastle 500 to “show off the Hunter Valley wine country to the influx of spectators the V8 Supercars event is sure to attract”.

Cessnock City Councillor Jay Suvaal said the race was an opportunity for the tourism industry and it would be calling Supercars to invite the motor racing team to visit the local government area.

“We know this event is going to be absolutely huge, attracting thousands of people from across Australia,” Cr Suvaal said.

“What a fantastic chance to showcase our region and promote ourselves as a must see and do during people’s visit.”

Cessnock City Council and Hunter Valley Wine and Tourism Alliance will work alongside local accommodation, transport and tourism operators to promote Hunter Valley wine country as the place to stay for those travelling to watch the race.

Cessnock Mayor Bob Pynsent supports the plan.

“[We] could reap real reward for our tourism operators and tourism industry now and into the future,”Cr Pynsent said.


Queen Elizabeth Stakes: Kris Lees looks for nice return from pair of outsiders

BIG DAY: Kris Lees after Lucia Valentina’s Queen Elizabeth Stakes win last year. Picture: Getty Images


ON the number of runners only, Newcastle trainer Kris Lees has twice as good a chanceof winning the $4 million Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000 metres) than he did last year.

But when Winx is involved, the chances of any other horse winning seemingly disappear.

Lees heads to day two of The Championships at Randwick on Saturday with Sense Of Occasion and Singing chasing a slice of the Queen Elizabeth Stakes prizemoney he claimed the bulk of last year with Lucia Valentina’s stunning last-to-first victory.

Winx bypassed the race last year but will chase a 17thconsecutive career victory on Saturday and the$2.34 million first prize, which would take her to second on Australia’s all-time earners’ list at $12,778,925.

Sense Of Occasion was third in the Doncaster Mile last week and Lees said the following day the Villiers Stakes champion was high unlikely to back up in the Queen Elizabeth. However, Lees changed plans after Sense Of Occasion pulled well and was the likely topweight for his other option, next week’sJRA Plate.

Sense of Occasion was a $101 was TAB Fixed Odds and Singing, which was last in the group 2 Ajax Stakes on March 11, was $201.

“Obviously we’re not going to be beating the mare, but I think they will run well enough to earn connections a good cheque,” Lees said.

Second takes home $760,000 and last in the nine-horse field earns $30,000.

“I’d prefer not to be racing against her,” Lees said of taking on Winx.“I don’t get any thrill out it, that’s for sure”.

“She’s got to be right there,” he said of Winx’s ranking among the greats.“I don’t know how you compare from different eras, but she’s in a pretty dominant frame at the moment.”

Lees said his best chance at Randwick was Danish Twist, which won the Provincial Championship Final on the same day last year.

The five-year-old mare has drawn barrier two for the $1 million Coolmore Legacy Stakes (1600m) and backs up from strong finishes when fifth and third in the Star Kingdom Stakes and Coolmore Classic respectively.

“She’s come a long way in 12 months,” Lees said. “She’s got the right alley to give herself the right chance. It’s a very good race on paper, but I think she will run well.”

Newcastle trainer David Atkins’ Pacific Reign and Lees’ Princess Posh and Clevedon Bay are in the $400,000 Provincial Championships final.Lees also has Zestful and Savoureux (group 2 Sapphire Stakes) and Rosa Carolina (listed South Pacific Classic) racing.

Princess Posh has drawn 18 for the 1400m final but that will become 14 with scratchings.

“It appears a tricky draw but you don’t know until you watch a few races,” Lees said.

“If she can have any type of luck, she’ll be right there and Clevedon Bay is going really well as well.

“I think the favourite [Gwenda Markwell’s Pomelo] will be very hard to beat.”

Muswellbrook trainer Pat Farrell’s Alliterate will also race in the South Pacific Classic.

Meanwhile, Newcastle trainer Paul Perry bought one of the 17 $1 million-plus yearlings sold at this week’s Inglis Easter sales in Sydney.

Perry purchased a Redoute’s Choice-Stareel colt for an even million and two more horses at the three-day sale. The others were a Redoute’s Choice-Jeter colt for $150,000 and So You Think-Cutie Express colt for $220,000.

Lees purchased a Snitzel-Kneeling filly for $450,000 and a Dundeel-Plumm colt for $150,000.