Tommy from Campbelltown – Buy Me A Beer Award

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Hi Fans and Punters,

It’s been another big week in racing and I have been down at ground level getting you the right stuff.

The various Carnivals in racing continue at opposite ends of the country……in Queensland and in South Australia and thrown into the mix is the 2 day Scone carnival as well. All great events but I just wonder about the logic behind having 3 big race meetings on the same day in different States. But, as we know, racing has perfected the art of destroying itself from within over recent years and having your best horses split over 3 States on the same day is just another example. FFS we can’t even get Sydney and Melbourne racing on the same showcase channel. Don’t get me started.

Some great performances over the last week including the riding of Brenton Avdulla, Andrew Adkins and Hugh Bowman and at the opposite end of the scale, Craig Williams’ performance on Petition yesterday in Adelaide……..plzzzzzzzzzzzzzz. But I have chosen as this week’s winner of my coveted Award as the great man himself, Darren Beadman, The Dazzler as he is known to most people except Kenny Callander who calls him The Dathler.

I have seen a few jockeys as good as Darren in my 50 years in racing, but I have never seen one better. What a rider he was.

Now 51 years of age, Darren had a stellar riding career winning a heap of premierships both as an apprentice and a senior rider. He rode the winner of the Golden Slipper, Inspired whilst he was still an apprentice. He has also ridden multiple Melbourne Cup winners, a Cox Plate winner and just about every other major race in the land as well as proving to be an astonishing success in Hong Kong.

Who could forget his rides on horses like Lonhro, Saintly, Octagonal, Super Impose and Let’s Elope. And in 2007 he broke the riding record for most wins in a season in Sydney, I think about 164….I remember it well because I had my best ever year on the punt that year by following Darren and promptly had my betting account closed by one of the alleged biggest bookies in the land.

Darren quit the saddle at one stage to become a priest disobeying Bart’s advice to “get a second opinion.” But the break did him the world of good and he came back a better rider and had his career cut short after a nasty fall in Honkers. It is fair to say without telling tales out of school that Darren went through a bit of a tough time after that but has recently found himself again by being attached to the Godolphin stable. And, as fate would have it, with the departure of John O’shea, Darren has become the main man and has made an astonishing start.

He only had his first runner as a trainer this week and kicked off with a double at Canterbury on Wednesday and followed it up with winners over the subsequent days at Gosford, Scone, Kembla and Doomben. In fact, he won the Scone Cup with Duca Valentinois.

There has been much speculation about who should train for Godolphin in Australia and names such as James Cummings, Peter Moody and Bryce Stanaway have been thrown up…….Bryce threw his own name up anyway. But why not Darren??? He has jumped straight out of the blocks in his first week of training with great success so I say keep him on. People should be working for and learning from him, not vica versa.

So Darren, my vote goes to you mate and whatever happens, I know you will contribute to the stable and give it your maximum effort. And after all that effort you are bound to be thirsty. So come and pick me up, drive me to the nearest pub and buy me a beer.

Until next week this has been Tommy from Campbelltown………………signing off.

Follow me on Twitter: @wpasterfield

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