THE Border’s sporting community is mourning the loss of well known horse lover Stephen Baxter.
Tributes have flooded in for Baxter, 56, who lost a long-running battle with cancer on Saturday.
He will be remembered for his love of horses and footy, but mostly for his kind nature, work ethic and generosity.
The Barnawartha farmer served 13 years on the Albury Racing Club committee and was also president of the Southern Campdraft Association for the same period before stepping down four years ago.
He owned several gallopers with Albury Racing Club president David Wallace and raced horses with many of the leading Border stables including Brett Cavanough, Brian Cox and Richard Freyer.
The Cavanough-trained Racers ‘N’ Chasers and Via Torrone both won at Albury on Caulfield Guineas day to hand Baxter and Wallace their first ever double as owners.
Albury Racing Club chief, John Miller, said Baxter had a lifelong passion for horses.
“Horses and the racing club were two of his great passions,” Miller said.
“But Steve was involved in not only the race club but campdrafts, the Barnawartha football club, was a farmer, a businessman and was involved in a lot of things and had a lot of connections.
“He was invaluable on the committee and had a great knowledge of horses, farming and was a great help with the track committee, dealing with trainers and industry participants.
“Steve was one of the hardest workers I have ever met and would do anything for anyone to help them out.
“I remember one race day a couple of years ago there was a blocked pipe and all of a sudden Steve is out there in his suit with a shovel to unblock it.
“That’s just the sort of bloke he was — he would get in and do things without being asked.
“I think you could count the amount of race meetings and committee meetings he has missed over the years on one hand.”
Baxter also ran a successful concrete business, Baxter Concrete, with his brother, David.
He is survived by his wife, Trish, and daughter, Claire.
His funeral will be held at the Albury Racing Club at 2pm today.
A burial service will be held tomorrow at the Barnawartha Lawn Cemetery.