OPINION: New Zealand's leading woman jockey Sam Spratt is to ride at the Wairio Jockey Club meeting at Ascot Park on Sunday.
Spratt, of Papakura, is second on the national premiership with 88 wins, three behind Cambridge whiz kid James McDonald. Her 598 rides this season have also produced 77 seconds, 52 thirds and stakes of $3,095,484.
Invercargill trainer Sean Bellew is organising Spratt's rides for Ascot Park .
The win of Victorian jumps jockey Brett Scott in the Great Western Steeplechase at Riverton on Friday was a highlight during the past week.
His mount Honour Victory relished the good footing to win impressively by 10 lengths. It was pleasing to see a large number _ 27 _ of horses compete in the three jumping races on the card.
Plans are uncertain for The Mussel Man, who ran third in the Western. Central Districts trainer Dean Cunningham said yesterday he would like to race The Mussel Man at Oamaru on May 14. However, if the track was likely to be firm, the gelding would probably return home this week and prepare for Waikato Steeplechase on May 16.
Meanwhile, I've heard New South Wales race caller Mark McNamara is the leading contender for the commentating job in Canterbury .
The sought-after position became available when Darren Tyquin died in a car accident in March.
McNamara commentates at Newcastle harness meetings.
Before I sign off, I was sadden to hear that Terry Goodwillie died on Saturday.
I'd occasionally see Terry at the Appleby pub in Invercargill. He liked to have a few bets and was keen to know if I had a winner for him.
As soon as I mentioned a horse, he'd head to the pub's betting terminal and put a few dollars on.
- The Southland Times