David Hayes has given star apprentice Chad Schofield three weeks to decide if he still wants to be stable rider the Lindsay Park trainer.
Schofield resumes riding on Saturday after serving a twelve meeting careless riding suspension, his sixth this season, and has asked Hayes if he could start riding trackwork for other stables.
“I told Chad he rides full time for me or he doesn’t,” Hayes told Racing Network.
“Chad can ride for other people during that period, but he won’t be riding for me.”
Schofield had established himself as one of the leading jockeys since teaming up with Hayes eighteen months ago and rode forty-one metropolitan winners last season to finish fifth on the Melbourne jockey’s premiership list.
And he wrote his name into the history books by becoming the first apprentice since Brent Thomson on Fury’s Order in 1975 to win the Group 1 $3m Sportingbet Cox Plate (2040m) at Moonee Valley last October on Shamus Award.
The twenty year old has ridden seventeen metropolitan winners this season and is currently sitting in equal sixth position on the jockeys premiership table behind front runner Damien Oliver who has chalked up thirty-four winners.
Ironically Thomson became the stable rider for Hayes’ father Colin and later for himself during his successful career and recently offered some advice to Schofield to try and help his riding style so he could spend more time in the saddle.
Hayes had been getting frustrated with the number and frequency of suspensions that Schofield was incurring and was pleased that Thomson was able to offer some advice.
“You couldn’t ask for a better mentor than Brent,” Hayes told the Herald Sun.
“It is very frustrating. He just needs to pull his head in.
“Hopefully, Brent can drum some sense into him.”
Hayes is prepared to give Schofield three weeks to work out want he wants to do but says he needs a jockey that is totally committed.
“You would not have had Brent Thomson riding work for Geoff Murphy,” Hayes said.
“You would not see Luke Nolen riding track work for me. There is no point working for me and riding somewhere else.
“I have put my whole enterprise behind Chad.”
After a few lean years, Hayes is starting to rebuild his training ranks and trained fifty-one Metropolitan winners last season to finish second to Peter Moody and is in equal fourth spot with sixteen winners this season.