Apprentice Anthony Allen has set his sights on next year’s apprentices’ premiership after writing himself into the Queensland record books with five winners at Doomben on Saturday.
On a day which saw all eight winners on the Doomben card ridden by apprentice jockeys, Allen equalled the late Ivan Wernowski’s feat of riding five winners on the one program as an apprentice at Doomben in 1978.
While visiting Kiwi apprentice Rosie Myers rode a double and Maija Vance scored on the other, Allen notched up his five winners on Double Image, Modern Warfare, Racing Heart, Lucky Luna and Bradbury Chocolate.
“This is a huge thrill for me. I thought I had a good book of rides and I was confident I would have a good day but to ride five winners is a massive bonus,” Allen said.
“I’ve ridden 99 winners all up now.”
“I want to get the 100 up as soon as possible and then I really want to win the apprentices’ title next year. That’s a major goal for me.”
Allen suffers from a hearing impairment and rides with two hearing aids, a green one in his right ear and a pink one in his left.
The pink hearing aid is in memory of his little sister Indiana and Allen dedicates all his rides to her after she passed away before her second birthday while waiting for a liver transplant.
“Indiana is my inspiration. She rides with me all the time,” Allen said.
Allen wrapped up his quintet with the Don Baker trained Bradbury Chocolate, coming from last on the home turn to maintain her unbeaten record and taking her win tally to seven.
Bradbury Chocolate was having her first visit to a city track and handled the heavy Doomben surface well after registering her previous wins on the country tracks of Cunnamulla, Roma and Charleville as well as the cushion track at Toowoomba.
Allen’s 3kg claim also helped noted wet tracker Racing Heart return to the winners list for premiership leading trainer Robert Heathcote when he stepped up to a suitable distance for the first time this preparation.
Champion jockey Mick Dittman holds the record of most metropolitan winners in a day with six at Eagle Farm in 1977 while Noel Thompson and Bill Thomas have both ridden seven winners in a day at Cunnamulla and Townsville.
Alllen celebrated his record feat with a steak at The Breakfast Creek Hotel on Saturday night with girlfriend, fellow apprentice Brook Richardson and then continued his winning form at the Sunshine Coast on Sunday with a win and a second from three rides.
“I was home by 9.30pm. It was a long day, a great day, but a long one,” said Allen.
Allen moved to Brisbane early in the year after gaining the notice of South East Queensland trainers when he was travelling to the Gold Coast from his New South Wales base at Grafton.
The talented apprentice transferred his indentures to Deagon trainer Steele Ryan from Grafton mentor John Selton six weeks ago and has ridden fourteen metropolitan winners for the current season.
Leading apprentice Tim Bell has ridden fifty-four winners and is second on the Brisbane jockey’s premiership behind Chris Munce on one hundred and one and will join the senior ranks next season.