Jarrod Todd has ridden the Neil Dyer-trained Royal Request to win the Darwin Cup with both men remembering jockey Roger Booth who died suddenly at the beginning of the carnival.
It was the third Darwin Cup for Victorian trainer Dyer for whom Booth was riding when he collapsed and died of a heart attack after a race at the Fannie Bay track in early July.
“Roger was a great mate of mine,” Todd told Sky Thoroughbred Central.
“He was on my back for that one.”
The Kyneton-based Dyer takes a team to the Northern Territory each year with Royal Request on his fourth visit on Monday.
The seven-year-old won the 2014 NT Derby before running unplaced in the Cup (2000m) then returned to run second in 2015 and fourth last year.
“It’s been a rough old time and Jarrod and I were both thinking of him (Roger) today,” Dyer said.
“I thought he (Royal Request) was the best horse in the race but I was worried about the weight.”
Royal Request ($8) overhauled Saturday Sorcerer ($21) in the straight and drew away to win by three lengths despite carrying top weight of 61.5kg which included a 1.5kg penalty for his 1600m-win on July 29.
Visiting Sydney jockey Blake Shinn three winners on the day, two for Dyer and one for Richard Laming.