Sunshine Coast – Full field for National Apprentices race

Racing Queensland’s efforts to boost the National Apprentices Series at the Sunshine Coast have been successful with a full field for Wednesday’s race.

Officials were embarrassed last year when only nine horses were accepted for the race after an initial nomination of 24.

Race organiser Rachel Mason put a suggestion to RQ that the prize money be increased to ensure more apprentices got the chance to ride in the race.

“RQ has came to the party and put public holiday prize money on the race meaning a first prize of $32,000,” Mason said.

Jake Bayliss (Victoria), Ryan Hurdle (South Australia), Jake Casey (Western Australia), Samantha Rowley (Northern Territory), Mehmet Ulucinar (Tasmania) and Cassandra Schmidt (NSW) are the visiting apprentices.

Meanwhile, trainer Brian Smith hopes to talk his apprentice Alysha Collett out of returning to New Zealand later this week.

Collett confirmed she was returning home despite winning on Loyalist at the Sunshine Coast on Saturday.

“I think I will get more chances back in New Zealand,” she said.

She has been on loan to Smith since January and Smith firmly believes she can be a success in Queensland.

“It just takes time and she is starting to get a roll on,” Smith said.

Story courtesy Mark Oberhardt


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