NEWS | Franklin family acknowledged with race name

3 Jan 2023
Auckland Thoroughbred Racing

You might have noticed that the Listed Open 1500m race set to run as a part of Pukekohe Park’s Melbourne Cup Day has seen a name change…

We’re excited to announce the race will now be known as the Fulton Family Stakes in recognition of the Fulton family, who have been associated with racing in Franklin for over a hundred years.
If you’re a follower of the Pukekohe racing scene, you’re likely familiar with the legacy of the family. If not, keep on reading.


Niranjan Parmar and Seajetz.

Niranjan Parmar and Seajetz. Last year’s victors of this Listed Open 1500m race here at Pukekohe Park.


Dynes Fulton was one of the eleven children of Robert Fulton and Mary Woods, Irish immigrants who were pioneers of the district. Given his Irish heritage, it is no surprise that he became involved with the newly founded Franklin Racing Club and served as their second President from 1924 to 1934.  

Dynes was a prominent figure in the Franklin region being the first Chairman of the Tuakau Town Board where he held office for many years. He was a founding director of the New Zealand Dairy Co-operative Company and was Chairman from 1926 until he died in 1934. He was known as a master of tact and diplomacy, handling difficult meetings and unruly shareholders with patient skill. 

The wider Fulton family established farms around the Tuakau, Onewhero, Pukekohe, Mauku and Puni district, and gained a reputation of good sportsmen and horsemen to boot. 

In 1938, Robert Fulton, one of Dynes’ younger brothers, and a farmer from Puni took over the chair at the Franklin Racing Club until 1940. His son Cyril took over that role in 1961 and served the Club until 1966.  

He had two sons, Mawson and Robert, both accomplished horsemen who were also prominent on the show circuit in their youth and hunting fields later. They also raced many good horses, notably jumpers,  over the years, each featuring the word Ocean in their names. 

Mawson took over as President in 1988 not long after the Club had changed its name to the Counties Racing Club, and it was under his direction that the very popular Onion and Potato Day was introduced. The Fulton brothers were major growers in the Mauku area, and they continued supplying produce for a good many years. During this time Bob (Robert) who is still alive today, also served as a steward. 

The members area in the stand at Pukekohe Park, the Fulton Lounge, was named in honour of this family and their fantastic contribution to the former Counties Racing Club and racing in the Franklin area, with the newly-named race now adding to the legacy.



If you want to get oncourse to see this race take place, click here to learn more about Melbourne Cup Day at Pukekohe Park.

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