When Racing NSW increased the riding fee for the State’s jockeys two years ago, a new window of opportunity opened for those riders who are prepared to travel.
How fitting it was that the winner of Saturday’s Hinkler Hcp should be almost “airborne” in the closing stages. The race is named after one of Queensland’s most famous sons, legendary aviator Bert Hinkler who in 1928 brought great acclaim to his country, to his state, and to his hometown of Bundaberg.
Todd Pannell was so busy trying to coax Despatch over the line on Saturday, he may have forgotten for a moment that he was one stride off his first Group 1 victory. By the time he arrived back at the mounting yard gate, he was fully aware this was the dream he’d been chasing for more than half his life.
Two year olds Tenley (Reisling Stakes) and Yes Yes Yes (Todman Stakes) were explosive in their Randwick wins on Saturday, while The Autumn Sun deserved every accolade that came his way. Their performances stole some of the spotlight from a dazzling win by Princess Posh in the Group 3 Newcastle Newmarket twenty four hours earlier.
Received an email during the week from popular owner Eddy Boas, who wishes to share the most touching horse story in recent memory. I’m sure you’ll remember Eddy’s hardy campaigner Stony Bay, and like me you’ll be surprised to learn that nineteen years have passed, since the tough gelding was retired.