Sydney apprentice Deanne Panya has joined an elite group with her win on Testashadow in the Magic Millions Cup.
The $1 million Cup was by far the biggest win for the 23-year-old who has ridden 11 metropolitan winners this season in Sydney.
She was the only apprentice riding at Saturday’s Gold Coast meeting but wasn’t overawed by the occasion to ride a perfect race to win on Testashadow.
“We had a good run behind the pace and when the gap came he gave plenty and continued to give. But I thought I had been out-bobbed on the line,” Panya said.
Panya became the third apprentice along with Luke Tarrant and Chris Munce, who both won the Magic Millions Two-Year-Old Classic, to ride a major winner in 30 years of Magic Millions carnivals.
She also became only the fifth female jockey to win a major race at the carnival.
Panya joined Clare Lindop (2008 Magic Millions Classic), Kelly Purdy (2010 Magic Millions Sprint), Tegan Harrison (2015 Magic Millions fillies and mares), and Michelle Payne (2016 Magic Millions Sprint).
Testashadow’s trainer Gary Portelli has a high opinion of Panya and entrusted her with the ride on Golden Slipper second favourite She Will Reign when she won her first start at Kembla Grange.
“Deanne is a very hard worker and she deserves every success she gets. It was a great ride today,” Portelli said.
Panya and her twin sister Beany were both born in Sydney of Laotian parents and both are jockeys.
Beany is apprenticed to Pat Duff in Brisbane and recently rode her first metropolitan winner.