Murray Bridge trainer Michael Hickmott has completed his jockey engagements for his three Darwin Cup runners, Lieder, Unbreakable and Wexford Town.

Jockey Blake Shinn, above, rides Unbreakable in the 2017 Darwin Cup at Fannie Bay. Photo by Race Horse Photos Australia.

Jockey Blake Shinn, above, rides Unbreakable in the 2017 Darwin Cup at Fannie Bay. Photo by Race Horse Photos Australia.

Hickmott will be chasing his fourth win in the $200,000 Carlton Mid Darwin Cup (2000m) at Fannie Bay in Darwin on Monday and the booking of Perth jockey Jarrad Noske on Irish import Wexford Town completes the puzzle.

Hickmott’s previous Darwin Cup winners were General Market (2007), Activation (2009) and last year with Canny Ballad.

Noske’s Perth rival and premiership winning record breaker William Pike is booked to ride the Darwin Cup pre-post favourite Lieder while Hickmott was able to secure the services of Melbourne Cup winning jockey Blake Shinn for Unbreakable.

Noske will be having his first ride in Darwin on Cup Day and is excited to have picked up the ride on the proven stayer who has won over 2400m at The Curragh in Ireland and over 2400m at Morphettvile in Adelaide.

“Wexford Town’s shown form in Melbourne and Adelaide since arriving from overseas,” Noske told The West Australian.

“I’ve yet to ride at Darwin and he could give me a good introduction to racing there.”

Wexford Town hasn’t raced since finishing eleventh in a 1950m BenchMark 90 Handicap at Morphettville Parks on April 1 but Hickmott is not perturbed about sending the Lloyd Williams seven year old cast off into the Darwin Cup first up over the 2000m.

“The horse is best when fresh and he’s working extra well,” Hickmott said.

“He’s run a first-up second in a Listed race over 2000m at Caulfield.

“Wexford Town was an Irish winner over 2200m and 2400m early in his career. He’s won a 2500m race at Morphettville.

“Jarrad won’t be wasting his time in travelling to ride this one.”

Wexford Town is the $21 outsider of Hickmott’s three Darwin Cup runners while Lieder heads the markets order at at $4 with Unbreakable on the fourth line of betting at $7.

Ladbrokes NT Derby winner Billet Doux is the second pick in the betting at $5 just ahead of the in-form Royal Request at $5.50.

Early market order for the 2017 Darwin Cup at$4 Lieder, $5 Billet Doux, $5.50 Royal Request, $7 Unbreakable, $7.50 Folk Tales, $11 Pretty Blonde, Saturday Sorcerer, $13 Whistle Stop, $15 Harrebs Time, $17 Abu Dhabi, Moon Devil, $21 Wexford Town, Spartan Eagle, $26 Electric Crimson, $51 Flying Tormenta, $67 New Empire, $101 Arctic Song, Best Case, Hammered Art, Overdane, Supercoach, War Story.

Weights for the 2017 Darwin Cup (2000m)

# Last 10 Horse Sex Age Trainer Ballot Weight Hcp Rating
1 0031661831 MOON DEVIL G 9 Kerry Petrick 1 56.5kg 81
2 x687732141 BILLET DOUX G 4 Sheila Arnold 2 54kg 73
3 951413×631 ROYAL REQUEST G 7 Neil Dyer 3 59kg 86
4 12x4521x83 PRETTY BLONDE M 9 Kym Healy 4 57kg 86
5 2x33469x72 WHISTLE STOP G 7 Dick Leech 5 57.5kg 83
6 878x20x00x WEXFORD TOWN (IRE) G 7 Michael Hickmott 6 57.5kg 83
7 70×5614920 WAR STORY (IRE) G 8 Carly Cook 7 56.5kg 81
8 696x172x17 UNBREAKABLE G 5 Michael Hickmott 8 56kg 80
9 142111×195 HARREBS TIME G 6 Tayarn Halter 9 56kg 80
10 1x82553x62 SATURDAY SORCERER G 8 Jason Manning 10 55.5kg 79
11 26×5358324 ABU DHABI G 5 Gary Kennewell 11 54kg 76
12 1321616953 LIEDER G 5 Michael Hickmott 12 54kg 75
13 5×53638080 BEST CASE (NZ) G 7 Carl Spry 13 54kg 75
14 3119×30215 FOLK TALES (NZ) G 5 Richard Laming 14 54kg 74
15 6257×76174 FLYING TORMENTA M 6 John Peacock 15 54kg 74
16 2213043×46 ELECTRIC CRIMSON (NZ) G 8 Richard Laming 16 54kg 74
17 532675×416 ARCTIC SONG G 7 Neil Dyer 17 54kg 73
18 087289×870 OVERDANE (GB) G 8 Barbara Joseph & Paul Jones 18 54kg 72
19 412238Px23 HAMMERED ART G 6 Carl Spry 19 54kg 70
20 x8737x7698 SUPERCOACH G 8 Danny Penna 20 54kg 69
21 76784×3524 SPARTAN EAGLE G 10 Bob Richard 21 54kg 69
22 1x0780x772 NEW EMPIRE G 8 Garry Lefoe 22 54kg 61

About The Author

Mark Mazzaglia

Mark is a passionate journalist with a life-time involvement in the racing industry. He spent many years as an analyst and form expert at the Courier Mail and also has hands-on experience working with some of Queensland’s top trainers.

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