Boom West Australian jockey William Pike continues to shatter barriers, riding his 200th overall WA winner of the season at Belmont on Wednesday.
Having already bested Paul Harvey’s metropolitan Perth mark of 116.5 wins, Pike took out the opening race at Belmont, the Schweppes Maiden Plate over 1000m aboard Sweet Ora.
Swooping down the outside, Pike took the Adam Durrant-trained two-year-old to the lead at the 150m mark and forged clear to win by a length from Carnelian.
The win took Pike’s metropolitan tally to 119.5 wins for the season, while he is nearly 50 wins ahead of Dean Yendall (154 winners) in the national race.
“When I first started this is not something I ever thought would be possible and it’s definitely a very good feeling,” Pike told RSN of his metropolitan record, before reflecting on how he got started in racing.
“One day my uncle introduced me to a trainer named Jack Cockell and it started there.
“I thought I had the greatest apprenticeship ever. I did all the north-west dirt tracks. They are some of the roughest tracks I have ever seen.
“Truth be told I thought that was my calling. I thought I would be a bush rider.
“But somehow, with a lot of support I slowly edged my way into town and good things kept happening.”
Having eclipsed Harvey’s record, Pike, who rarely rides interstate because of family commitments and frequent books of good rides in Perth admits he’d like to take out a big win in the spring.
His best chance as he sees it right now is the Darren Weir-trained three-year-old Perfect Reflection.
Pike frequently rides for the filly’s owners, the Peters family, in Perth and rode her to her five wins from her first five starts, including the Group One Kingston Town Stakes, where she beat Delicacy and Dark Musket, before heading to Melbourne and the Weir stable.
“I would like to focus a little more on getting a bit more recognition and riding a big one somewhere else,” Pike said.
“My favourite horse is Perfect Reflection, she has gone over (to Melbourne) and with a good spell I’m sure she’ll be over there doing good things”
As for the rest of the season Pike won’t be resting on his laurels and hopes he can set a metropolitan record that will stand the test of time.
“They probably said when Paul (Harvey) broke the record that no one would catch it,” he said.
“Somewhere near the 125 wins is my target and hopefully that stands for a while.”