Vale Ray Cleaver

It is with sadness that Racing Victoria (RV) acknowledges the passing today of licensed Cranbourne trainer Ray Cleaver after being rushed to hospital in recent days.

Cleaver, 70, had held a trainer’s licence in Victoria since 2001 after moving from New South Wales. He prepared 220 winners including victories at all four Melbourne metropolitan tracks.

His biggest successes came courtesy of Dot Com and Smart Arch when victorious in the Kyneton Cups of 2001 and 2004 respectively, while Honest Politician won the Listed Heatherlie Handicap in a stellar 2005 spring campaign which saw her contest the Group 1 Myer Classic on Derby Day.

That trio were among his best performers, along with Astro Boy, Dawnstorm, Diggersanddealers, Donarchie, Hong Kong Cheri, Locke’s Choice, Tankster and Whitehaven Girl.

Cleaver’s last winner came at Yarra Valley on 22 February 2020 courtesy of Lots of Puddles who was also the last runner he saddled when narrowly on the heels of placegetters at Mornington on Thursday.

RV Chief Executive, Giles Thompson, said: “On behalf of the Victorian racing industry, I would like to extend our prayers and heartfelt condolences to Ray’s family and friends following the sad news of his passing.

“Ray was a popular member of the Cranbourne racing community who is being remembered as a great character and horseman by the jockeys who rode for him and those that trained alongside him. He will be missed by his many friends in racing.”