Jockeys feature in top battle for title
THE top three jockeys on the current Ipswich Premiership ladder all had a win last week to keep the battle raging.
Jim Byrne won aboard the Matt Dunn trained Munster.
Tegan Harrison and Tim Bell each rode winners in Bernindi and Pantalettes respectively.
Each of these latter two winners are trained by Tony Gollan who continued his brilliant training form at Ipswich last Wednesday with another treble of wins.
His third winner last week was Vienna Queen who won under apprentice Alannah Fancourt to give Gollan 20 winners to date this season.
Next on the list is Matt Dunn who is six wins behind and then back to Liam Birchley and Robert Heathcote on nine wins each. Heathcote had his ninth win on Wednesday with Asadauskaite.
One would imagine that even with four months of the season remaining, Gollan has a stranglehold on the premiership at Ipswich, which would be his first and which would carry on his terrific form in recent times.
YOUNG apprentice jockey Matthew McGillivray continued his rise to prominence with a treble of wins at Ipswich last Wednesday.
McGillivray won aboard Sonador’s Princess for Toowoomba trainer Shane Iverson in the third race to get his day rolling. He then needed to wait until the final two races of the day for further success with the Barry Baldwin trained Glendara and Robert Heathcote’s Asadauskaite in the last race.
This young apprentice came to notice winning aboard Chris Munce trained winners over the past month.
Munce had another winner on Wednesday with Rile, although another apprentice Luke Tarrant was aboard Munce’s fourth career win..
Tarrant would be looking forward to this weekend as Gold Coast trained Rudy aims for a big Randwick Mile double as he contests the $3 million Doncaster Handicap after winning the Epsom there prior to Christmas.
Five for McDonald
IN an amazing riding performance at Rosehill on Saturday, James McDonald collected five wins including the Group 1 BMW aboard the imported Hartnell.
Second in the race was the highly rated Japanese galloper To The World as Melbourne Cup winner Protectionist again showed that he needs two miles – the distance of the Melbourne and Sydney Cups.
The other Group 1 race was for the three year old fillies in the Vinery Stakes.
McDonald was aboard the odds-on favourite First Seal and was expected to collect another win. However the jockey that was sacked from the same galloper after her last start Group 1 second was a bit too good. Blake Shinn rode roughie Fenway to a narrow victory in a strong statement after losing the ride on First Seal.
Shinn rode a double on the day as did Keiran McEvoy resulting in only three winning jockeys for the Rosehill card.
The winner of the final Group 1 race of the season for Melbourne, the William Reid Stakes on Friday night was Lucky Hussler.
The best sprinters in Australia were however not at Moonee Valley on Friday night. They were waiting for Saturday, the first day of the championships at Randwick where four Group 1 races will be contested including the $2.5m TJ Smith Stakes.
This race will feature Lankan Rupee, Terra Vista, and favourite Chautauqua.
Other Group 1 races on Saturday are the $3 million Doncaster Handicap, the $2 million Australian Derby and the $1 million Sires Produce for the two year olds.
TOMORROW’S scheduled race meeting at Ipswich has been transferred to Doomben.
The decision was with a view to looking after the south-east Queensland racetracks as far as possible while each take up a larger workload with Eagle Farm unavailable.
This was a sensible decision as the heavy load is taking a toll on Ipswich. Doomben has also had a couple of weeks off recently, including a predominantly washed out meeting last week.
The next Ipswich meeting is planned for April 8.