Tuesday, February 21, 2017
Trevor Simpson 'slicing' his way backBY WES MARTIN
TREVOR 'Slicer' Simpson is without doubt one of the better riders we have produced in this country. He holds the record for the most wins by a jockey in a calendar year and, over the years, has built a huge and loyal fan base.
Many thought that his best days were over, but he has been slowly and without much fanfare slicing his way back to prominence.
The former champion rode two winners on Saturday last, Shezabosslady and Fearless Babe in a clear demonstration of his skills and his dogged determination to excel in his chosen profession. He brought the house down with a stirring performance on Shezabosslady as, after taking the lead in the one mile top-claiming event, he was consistently harassed and turned into the straight under pressure from several horses. Simpson then rallied Shezabosslady to hold off repeated challenges before getting home by a diminishing one length from The Legacy and Brawn Brown. The win by Shezabosslady continued the recent upsurge in form by trainer Lorne Kirlew.
Simpson waited until the ninth and final race for another resolute display of his riding talent. Going to the lead in the seven-furlong Track Price Plus 'dig out' event, 'Slicer' entered the last two furlongs of the race under the intense challenge of Yeswewill, ridden by Andre Martin, on the inside rails. In the end, the strength and guile of 'Slicer' prevailed as trainer Phillip Elliot celebrated his first winner for the year.
NOON IT IS BEATEN
The anticipated rematch between Blast Them Away and Noon It Is did not materialise, as the former fell ill before raceday and was not able to race. This left the race at the mercy of Noon It Is, but given the uncertainties of horse racing, Noon It Is did not enjoy the anticipated stroll, as Palace Gold with the very capable Paul Francis in the pigskin was settled in fourth as Kipling Weekend led with Noon It Is coming slowly out of the gates. Turning for home, Kipling Weekend went wide and lost any chance of winning, while Noon It Is and Palace Gold locked horns on the rails. Palace Gold, who holds a victory over Noon It Is, was stronger in the end winning over Kipling Weekend with Noon It Is third.
A disappointing run by the filly, Noon It Is — she will return.
One really has to wonder what the outcome might have been had young and green apprentice O'Brien White had kept Kipling Weekend on a straight course. He will learn in time that the shortest route in any race is always best.
WALKER BRINGS THE HOUSE DOWN
It was a rough day for the top riders, as Omar Walker and Dane Nelson had only one winner between them, Walker obliging on Swapped for trainer Winston Morris in the second race and what a ride that was by the former champion.
In a jaw-dropping display of controlled, yet aggressive riding, Walker got every ounce of effort from Swapped to stave off the challenge of El Cliente (Ameth Robles) and Technocat (Richard Mitchell) with the margins at the end being a short-head by half a length. That fans at the Park were caught in the rapture of Walker's riding display is an understatement.
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