Promising apprentice Dylan Gibbons has limited experience on the Provincial circuit but goes into Wednesday’s Wyong meeting with two strong chances.
The 19-year-old has only had 10 Provincial rides to date, tasting success on the Ron Quinton trained Hibiscus Lady at Gosford in late October.
At her subsequent start on November 18, Gibbon’s first race ride at Wyong, he was runner-up but hopes to go one better on Wednesday.
He partners Siesta Key and No Laughing Matter part of a strong team his boss Kris Lees has at the meeting.
“I’d ridden in a few trials at Wyong before the race ride with Hibiscus Lady and found riding on race day a whole lot different.
“The home turn was a lot sharper race day than it seemed trial day. I got a bit lost and let my horse wander right off, so I’ll be navigating a bit better than I did that day.
“It’s all experience and I’m still learning so much. It’s a different level again riding against the best jockeys at Provincial meetings.”
Gibbons has had a flying start to his apprenticeship with 26 winners to date.
He is coming off a double at Tuncurry on Saturday and Port Macquarie double on January 8.
He now claims 2kg in the country and is happy to do the most of his riding around the bush tracks.
“I’m not in a hurry to take more rides at the Provincials. I’d like to outride my country claim before I concentrate on that. I know I’ve still got so much to learn, and the country is a good place to do it.”
So You Think mare Siesta Keys starts in the Benchmark 58 over 1300m, with Gibbons having partnered her to a second at her last outing at Taree on January 4.
The four-year-old was beaten in a photo by stablemate No Laughing Matter and Gibbons is confident she’s a winning chance.
“The only time I’ve sat on her was last start at Taree when we just got beat by No Laughing Matter.
“It was a super run. She got caught wide with no cover outside the leaders and had to do all the bullocking work. No Laughing Matter nearly put a length on her, and she fought back to get pipped by a nose.
“She’s got all the right attributes for a race like this. She’s got ability and the physical and mental toughness that gets her through challenges like getting caught wide without cover.
“She’s definitely seasoned and ready for it. She’s a tough, honest mare who will give me 100%.”
Gibbons rides No Laughing Matter in the 1350m Benchmark 64, a heat of the Rising Star Series for apprentices.
The Exosphere filly has won three of her six starts and is shooting for her third successive win.
“I’ve won on No Laughing Matter before in an apprentice race at Taree,” he said.
“She’s a young filly going through her grades and is doing everything right.
“It looks like an ideal race for her.”
Race 1 – 1.45pm: KIM WAUGH RACING 4YO & UP MAIDEN (1200m): 1 SPANISH PEARL, 2 Stark, 3 Doppelpunkt, 4 Blue Sky Moon.
Race 2 – 2.20pm: KRISTEN BUCHANAN RACING CG&E MAIDEN (1350m): 1 KAPTIVE, 2 Bytact, 3 Right Bower, 4 Deliberation.
Race 3 – 2.55pm: TRACEY BARTLEY RACING F&M MAIDEN (1350m): 1 BIG ANGEL, 2 Mon Amore, 3 Correlate, 4 Princess Amira.
Race 4 – 3.30pm: MARK CROSS RACING 2&3YO PROV & CTRY MAIDEN (1000m): 1 PRESS AHEAD, 2 Mystic Gem, 3 Express Award, 4 Hamoon Money.
Race 5 – 4.05pm: ALLAN DENHAM RACING CLASS 1 (1100m): 1 QUATUM, 2 Gunnamatta, 3 Colonel, 4 Go For Gold.
Race 6 – 4.40pm: HAPPY RETIREMENT WYONG TRAINER STAN THOMAS CONDITIONAL BM 68 (1300m): 1 DERBARI, 2 Snitzify, 3 Siesta Key, 4 Elegant Grace.
Race 7 – 5.15pm: JEFF ENGLEBRECHT RACING BENCHMARK 64 (1350m): 1 NEVER NEVER RIVER, 2 Whatsin, 3 No Laughing Matter, 4 Tahuna.