RACING WITH TONY: Stanley rides 100 winners
In what is nothing short of a magnificent effort, Brisbane based jockey Justin Stanley has ridden 100 winners for the second successive racing season.
Stanley mainly concentrates on riding in the Central and Northern regions of Queensland so it was fitting that he broke and then bettered his "ton” of winners for the current racing season at Home Hill last Saturday.
There he won on Egyptian Bear for his major supporter the Mackay based trainer Olivia Cairns and later during the card on the Jared Wehlow trained Rosinca.
The Home Hill double brought his tally of winner for the 2018-19 season which has just over two months remaining, to 101.5 winners.
That sets Stanley in ninth placing overall in Australia behind the "Wizard of the West” William Pike who leads the Australian premiership with 170 victories to date.
It seems Stanley is set to break his career best achieved during the 2107-18 racing season when riding 109 winners to be placed 16th in the nation behind Pike who "double toned” with an astonishing 200 winners for the 12 months.
Saturday's feat had all the more significance for the "true gentleman” Stanley whereby he is the first to break the 100 winners mark for this season in Queensland.
It's on the cards that Stanley could build on his winning numbers at Callaghan Park, Rockhampton races tomorrow where he rides Toxophily; Giselle; Little Hunter; Seized; Miss Anna and Attique.
Saturday was a day of mixed fortunes for jockeys who service the mid-week Rockhampton Jockey Club TAB race meetings.
It started off triumphally for last years Rocky Cup winning jockey Les Tilley when he was buoyed to win the first race on Doomben Cup day at that Brisbane track on the Les Ross trained Red Colour.
Just over three hours later "Bubba” Tilley was lying on the track at Beaudesert after his mount Conquermore crashed at the 600 metres mark of the 3YO Class 2 (1200m).
Apprentice Adin Thomson (Uni Amor), who like Tilley has a strong book of rides at Rockhampton tomorrow, was following Conquermore and also came to grief.
It seems almost miraculous that seemingly Tilley and Thomson escaped virtually unscathed after initially being taken to Beaudesert Hospital for medical checks.
Tilley's manager Tony Durston said yesterday that apart from a "bruised wrist” Tilley seemed to be fine.
"He was stood down from riding at the Sunshine Coast (yesterday) but expects to get a medical clearance to ride in Rocky on Tuesday. It (the fall) looked bad as he landed face down before getting up and walking away. Les was very lucky”, Durston said.
The in-demand Tilley has a full book of seven Rockhampton rides among which is the outstanding Graeme Green trained juvenile multiple winner Master Jamie.
It seems teenage Thomson is also right to go for Rocky races.
"I'm all good. I went to hospital and they checked my neck but I'm right”, the young rider said.
Thompson with three winners to his credit at Cairns races mid last week had held a booking for Rockhampton Cup contender Unbiased in the Gunnedah Cup yesterday SUNDAY before it was scratched.
Rockhampton trainer Jared Wehlow, speaking on behalf of his close friend Codey Morgan the trainer of Unbiased said that came about because Unbiased drew 17 barrier at Gunnedah.
Instead, Unbiased was floated the 400kms trip from Tamworth to Rosehill Gardens on Saturday where he finished a close 2.6 lengths fifth behind the Chris Waller trained Star Of The Seas (NZ) in a strong $125,000 Handicap (1500m).
The run elated Wehlow who is due to take over the training of Unbiased soon in his preparation for the $150,000 Rocky Cup (1600m) on July 6.
Wehlow was deputised by his father Greg at Home Hill races on Saturday when the stable pair of Rosinca (Stanley) and Zukaz (Ashley Butler) both saluted as winners.
Ashley Butler made at a double at Home Hill winning the Battle of the Bush Qualifier (1180m) on the marvellous performer Stellar Knight.
Hopping down south again to Beaudesert on Saturday, apprentice Adam Spinks, formerly indentured to the now Callaghan Park based Lyle Wright, rode a winning treble and he too is Rocky races bound tomorrow.
Central Queensland jockeys Dale Evans (Rockhampton) and Gemma Steele (Gladstone) brought-up a "two Cups double” for Miles trainer Bevan Johnson at sparsely spaced centres on Saturday.
Evans won the $8450 Emerald cup (1615m) on Artie's Shore while Steele took out the $8500 Jandowae BM 65 Cup (1500m) aboard Money Ad.
-- Tony McMahon