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Geoff Torney, a former Moonee Valley Chairman and founding director of Racing Victoria, has died, aged 82.

Torney, a litigation specialist who was recognised as a Member in the General Division of the Order of Australia in 2005, was a much-loved figure in Ballarat where he was born and raised.

He joined the Ballarat Turf Club committee in 1966 and after serving two terms as President joined the MVRC committee in 1988 serving as chairman from 1997 to 2002.

He was the MVRC’s nominee on the inaugural RV Board in December 2001 and served as a director for three years.

Torney’s four decades of service as a racing administrator also included a term as chairman of the Country Racing Council, now known as Country Racing Victoria.

The Torney Night Cup, a Listed race named in his honour, is conducted at Moonee Valley each February and was this year won by Northwest Passage, trained by Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott.

Scott Whiteman, CRV chief executive, recognised Torney as an enthusiastic supporter of country racing who will be sadly missed.

“Geoff was a wonderful leader and a terrific person who made a tremendous contribution to country racing over many years,” Whiteman said.

 
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