A March 11, 2011 file photo of Horse trainer Bart Cummings looking on during a media conference ahead of the Super Saturday's race day at Flemington race track in Melbourne. Bart Cummings has died aged 87 surrounded by family at his rural property in north western Sydney, Sunday, Aug. 30, 2015.
A March 11, 2011 file photo of Horse trainer Bart Cummings looking on during a media conference ahead of the Super Saturday's race day at Flemington race track in Melbourne. Bart Cummings has died aged 87 surrounded by family at his rural property in north western Sydney, Sunday, Aug. 30, 2015. AAP Image - Joe Castro

Cummings remembered as Australian great

BART Cummings has been remembered as one of Australia's greatest sporting legends.

Cummings died in his Sydney homestead on Sunday morning.

His grandson and training partner James Cummings said the legendary trainer died in his sleep.

"James Bartholomew Cummings OAM, passed away peacefully in his sleep in the early hours of this morning, Sunday the 30th of August 2015, in his homestead at Princes Farm, Castlereagh," he said.

"His final moments were spent with his family and wife of 61 years, Valmae, with whom he celebrated their anniversary on Friday.

"For Bart, aged 87, this was a fitting end. A husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather; a master trainer and a larger than life figure.

"We will miss you."

Cummings was a prominent trainer for seven decades and won the Melbourne Cup 12 times, a record for which he was dubbed the "Cups King".

He won his first Melbourne Cup in 1965 with Light Fingers and his last in 2008 with Viewed.

Tributes to Cummings rolled on social media as the news broke on Sunday morning.

Paralympian Kurt Fearnley praised Cummings' legendary down-to-earth nature.

"You'd swear Bart Cummings was part horse with his ability to develop a winner. Was comfortable in a bush pub or with the Queen," Fearnley tweeted.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott said he sympathised with Cummings family for their loss.

"Australia has lost a sporting giant and a racing legend," Mr Abbott said.

"Few people have dominated a sport like Bart Cummings did. He will be remembered as a truly great trainer, the winner of literally thousands of races."

- APN NEWSDESK


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