Champion jockey James Mcdonald has brought up his 100th Sydney metropolitan win of the season and fittingly, he has done it aboard a horse trained by long-time supporter Chris Waller.
McDonald found himself stranded on 99 after he booted home Tinnie Winnie for Waller at Canterbury on May 25 then didn’t get a chance to add to his tally when he rode in Brisbane on the weekend.
But he wasted no time chasing down his goal at Warwick Farm on Wednesday, guiding Pretty Wild to a promising debut win in the opening race and celebrating the moment with a small fist pump after the post.
“I’ve done it. It was a bit of a relief,” McDonald said.
“It was good to do it on Chris’ horse, who’s obviously very smart.
“She just went about her business really well and scooted through that heavy ground and importantly, came here nice and fit.”
It is the fourth season in succession that McDonald has reached a century of Sydney wins, a feat achieved by only one other jockey.
Darren Beadman was equally dominant during his reign as Sydney’s champion rider, booting home more than 100 city winners in six consecutive seasons from 2001-02 to 2006-07.
Beadman also rode a more than 100 Sydney winners when he claimed back-to-back titles in 1994-95 and 1995-96.
Pretty Wild ($4.40) is raced by a syndicate of owners, including former Australian cricket captain Michael Clarke, and showed a superior turn of foot to come from the tail of the field and score.
Waller admitted he was unsure what to expect from the daughter of Brazen Beau but predicted she would take good improvement from her first race day experience.
“We didn’t quite know what to expect. The owners are a good, keen, enthusiastic group of people and I had to bring them down to earth a little bit,” Waller said.
“I said she will either be fast or slow and I was right, she was fast.
“She looks like she has got a nice future and she will only improve on that today.”