In-form Newcastle jockey Andrew Gibbons hopes to get a feature win on one of racing’s biggest days to keep his stellar season soaring on Tuesday at Randwick.
Gibbons will ride the Kris Lees-trained Tactical Advantage for owners Australian Bloodstock in the $150,000 Choisir Handicap (1100m). The five-year-old has three wins and a second in five runs for Lees and was a last-start fourth in the Everest consolation (1200m).
The ride is one of six at Randwick for Gibbons, who leads the NSW premiership on 47 winners, four clear of James McDonald.
Gibbons regularly rides Tactical Advantage in track work but gets his first chance in a race on the $3 favourite.
“Things have been going good this season and this is a nice little reward Kris has given me, the favourite in a feature race at Randwick,” Gibbons said.
“It just keeps snowballing, the success from early in the season, so if I could get a winner or two in Sydney tomorrow that’s going to keep my name up there and hopefully I can keep building from there and finish off the season the way I’ve started.”
Gibbons is well on the way to a standout season tally. His best effort is 79 winners and last campaign he finished on 65.
On Tuesday he also has rides on Ocean Dash for Richard Freedman, Round Of Applause for Bruce Heys, High Power for Lees, Tony’s Reward for Bjorn Baker and Temprado for the Snowden stable. He said Tony’s Reward had the potential to surprise after back-to-back wins at Bathurst and Orange.
“I know he’s only been winning around the bush but I remember last preparation I beat it at Wyong on Newsfan, which won on Saturday at Rosehill, so it’s obviously one with ability to run second to her,” he said.
“He’s obviously taken it back to the bush to get some confidence and he’s put a couple together so he’s one who could surprise.”
“High Power is resuming, has drawn bad and has a big weight. He’s got a few things going against him but he is a horse with plenty of ability.”