Injured jockey Chad Schofield could be back riding during the Spring Carnival if his recovery from a fractured neck vertebra goes to plan.
Schofield was one of three riders who fell at Cranbourne last Sunday and along with Ben Thompson and Steven Arnold were transported to Dandenong Hospital.
Thompson and Arnold were released while Schofield was transferred to Melbourne’s Alfred Hospital where doctors diagnosed the young jockey with a C3 vertabra fracture and with no surgery required will have him on the sidelines for approximately three months.
Schofield was still on a high after riding his fourth Group 1 winner on Saturday at Eagle Farm on Sonntag in the $500,000 Channel Seven Queensland Derby (2400m) when he arrived at Cranbourne on Sunday.
At last year’s Spring Carnival, Schofield, still riding as an apprentice, rode with maturity way above his years with an all the way the win on Shamus Award in the Group 1 $3m Sportingbet Cox Plate (2040m) at Moonee Valley on October 26.
The young jockey continued to make his presence felt among the senior riding ranks and guided super sprinter Lankan Rupee to a sensational win in the Group 1 $1m Lexus Newmarket Handicap (1200m) at Flemington on March 8.
Then he added the Group 1 $400,000 Moet & Chandon Champagne Stakes (1600m) at Randwick on April 26 to his resume after scoring on the Leon Macdonald and Andrew Gluyas trained Go Indy Go.
All going well Schofield will back mixing it at Group 1 level again in the Spring ready to chase more feature race wins.
Schofield has found the transition from being an apprentice to competing as a fully-fledged rider fairly painless and strung together four Group 1 victories plus numerous Group and feature race wins.
“Everyone says when you first come out of your time, it’s the hardest time in your career, but for me, it’s been the best time of my career,’’ Schofield told The Daily Telegraph.
“For me, I went ‘bang bang’ and rode some Group 1 (winners), so I was very fortunate the transition was prosperous.”
Schofield is currently sitting in equal sixth spot with Michael Rodd on the Melbourne jockey’s premierships table on twenty-seven wins.
Last Saturday’s Stradbroke Handicap winning jockey Damien Oliver heads the premiership with fifty-nine wins for the season.