Former top jockey Brad Pengelly is determined to make a more permanent return to metropolitan racing after scoring aboard Privlaka at Doomben on Wednesday.
It was Pengelly’s fourth winner and first in the city since he returned to race riding last month.
Pengelly rode with great success in Brisbane during the 1990s and 2000s and had stints in Asia and Sydney before he retired in March 2012 due to weight problems.
However, the lure of race riding has proven hard to resist and he recently relocated to Queensland to re-establish his career.
Pengelly hopes the state’s warm climate will help him keep his weight under control.
“I can ride at 56 kilograms at the moment but by the time the new metropolitan season starts I will be able to ride 55 kilograms,” Pengelly said.
Pengelly said he couldn’t remember his last Brisbane winner and he got lost returning to the jockeys’ room in the new Doomben lay-out.
He has been riding trackwork for Privlaka’s trainer Robert Heathcote, who listened to the race over the internet while on holiday in Switzerland.
Privlaka, who cost $130,000 as a yearling, is by Mossman who is also the sire of Heathcote’s star galloper Buffering.
“Rob has a big opinion of Privlaka and he might go on to be pretty smart,” stable foreman Michael O’Leary said.
Heathcote notched a double with the Mossman breed when another of the sire’s sons Neuschwanstein won the Become A Member Of The BRC Handicap (1350m).
Meanwhile, apprentice Alannah Fancourt celebrated her first Doomben win in spectacular style when she took a needle-eye run in the straight to win the Racing Retro Handicap (1650m) on Hard Ticker.
“The horse actually took me through the gap so he gets the credit,” Fancourt said.
Gold Coast galloper Tricky Rocket was unlucky not to add his name to the day’s winner’s list when he blundered at the start and was beaten a nose by Shapin Lady in the Channel 7 Handicap (1050m).
His rider Matt McGuren protested unsuccessfully against Jim Byrne on Shapin Lady.
“I don’t know how I stayed on at the start. And to boot, he lost a plate in the run,” McGuren said.