During Local History Week 2016, Jacqueline Dinan launched her historical fiction book, 'Racing the Boys.'
Racing the Boys 'is about local horse trainer Hedwick ‘Granny’ McDonald, who was a trailblazer in this male dominated industry, with stables at Awapuni. Her career reached its climax with Catalogue, a little-known eight-year-old gelding, winning the 1938 Melbourne Cup. Granny’s name however does not appear in official record books, the feat was instead credited to her husband, as at the time the Victoria Racing Club did not issue trainer’s licences to women.'
At the launch Jaqueline talked about the book, and the challenges of fictionalising true events. She was also joined by Mary Mountier, local author and racing historian, who highlighted the significant contribution that women like ‘Granny’ made to New Zealand’s racing industry.
Jacqueline, an Australian author, was also instrumental in the donation of certain records of Granny McDonald, to the Ian Matheson City Archives, after visiting the area to research the book.