New Zealand apprentice Alysha Collett has upheld the family honour by riding a winner at Rosehill as part of a two-week scholarship in Sydney.
The 18-year-old won an Auckland Racing Club prize which is supported by former Kiwi, premier Sydney trainer Chris Waller, a year after her brother Jason.
With just one ride at the meeting, Collett made the most of her chances aboard the Waller-trained Matiya’s Pride, a $13 chance in the De Bortoli Wines Handicap (1500m).
With Collett’s 3kg claim, Matiya’s Pride got into the race with just 51kg, a factor which helped as Shadow Minister ($17) closed in at the finish to get within a length.
The Collett name is famous in New Zealand racing and it was only a matter of time before Alysha joined her siblings and extended family in the jockey ranks.
“I’ve been riding horses all my life and racehorses for about five years,” Collett said.
“I didn’t like school much so Dad encouraged me to be a jockey.
“It’s a big thrill to win a race in Sydney.
“I like it here. The racing is a lot different to New Zealand.”
The trip to Sydney has cost Collett second place on the New Zealand apprentices’ premiership which her brother leads comfortably from Rory Hutchings.
Although she said she was enjoying her stay, it will be some time before she returns.
“I’ll probably stay at home for the next year at least,” she said.
It won’t be the same for Jason who is expected to return to Sydney next month.
After his first two-week stint, he crossed the Tasman on a three-month loan to Waller and rode 24 city winners.
“He comes out of his time in November but he will be able to use his claim until then,” Waller’s racing manager Liam Prior said.
“We are looking forward to his return.”