Feature races in Melbourne are fast approaching and multiple Group One-winning jockey Brad Rawiller is taking action to get his weight where he wants it to be so he can be a major player.
Rawiller scored a satisfying win at Flemington on Saturday in the Listed Chester Manifold Stakes on the Darren Weir-trained Burning Front, a horse he has registered 12 wins on.
It was Rawiller’s seventh city win in Melbourne for the season and he admitted it was pretty special given his association with the horse who had not won in his past eight starts, and also because he had been going through a lean period.
“I’ve had a few suspensions and then my weight hasn’t been so good,” Rawiller said.
“I’ve got Ron Johnson actually coming on Monday just to get myself back in order.
“58 (kilograms), for me, is not good enough.
“It’s time I got serious and Ron, over the years at times when I’ve got at that point where I’m struggling to get it down, he’s always tightened the screws and got me down to where I needed to be.”
Rawiller said he had not been riding below 58kg recently but wanted to be at least a couple of kilograms lighter heading into the autumn.
“I’m riding every day and then it’s hard to diet down,” he said.
“I virtually had three suspensions in a row and I was also going to Perth (during the summer carnival).
“I hadn’t had a chance to properly get it down. You can’t just diet down then, and that’s where Ron Johnson comes in.
“He lives with you and makes you eat breakfast and that. That’s my biggest problem at the moment, not eating. It’s always sweating and then replacing fluid and so forth.
“I certainly want to be getting down and riding at least 56 for the autumn.
“But to be honest, it’s just as much being able to just get my mental health and fitness back and be riding strong.”
He had a great association with champion Weekend Hussler who he won seven Group One races on, while more recently he has enjoyed a successful combination with the Weir-trained Black Heart Bart, winning five Group One races.