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Under Alert Level 1, the New Zealand Sports Hall of Fame is now OPEN. Our hours are 10am to 3pm (Wednesdays to Sundays). We are closed on Mondays and Tuesdays (open by appointment only on these days).
Bill Skelton
Inducted in 1990
The names of the Skelton brothers Bob and Bill are synonymous with horseracing in New Zealand.
Sporting Category:
  • Thoroughbred racing
Bill Skelton began as an apprentice jockey at the age of 13 and rode his first winner, at Wingatui, at the age of 15 (it was a dead-heat). For the next four decades, Skelton was at or near the top of his profession.

He was champion jockey on seven occasions and he was outside the top four of the premiership for only four seasons between 1947 and 1979. Skelton rode a record 124 winners in the 1967-68 season and in May 1980 became the first New Zealand jockey to ride 2000 winners (he finished with 2179).

Skelton also rode with success in South Africa, Japan, Singapore, Malaysia and Hong Kong.

Sporting Spotlight

Cecil Matthews

(1914 - 1987)

There could have been no greater praise for Matthews than to be dubbed “the Nurmi of the Empire” after the great Finn, Paavo Nurmi, who dominated middle and long-distance running in the 1920s.
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New Zealand
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