Jockey Michael Cahill rides Just Wishing to victory at Ipswich racetrack. PIcture: Trackside Photography
Jockey Michael Cahill rides Just Wishing to victory at Ipswich racetrack. PIcture: Trackside Photography

Master hoop leads way as Ipswich gears for Saturday meet


FORMER Ipswich Cup and Ipswich Premiership winning jockey Michael Cahill rode Just Wishing to victory in the first race at Bundamba to continue a long-term partnership with trainer Bevan Laming.

As well as others over the years, Cahill partnered the Laming trained St Basil in an Ipswich exhibition gallop prior to winning the 2005 Stradbroke Handicap.

The pair have been winning and trialing together at Ipswich for more than two decades in a partnership that has brought great success over many years.

Just Wishing had previously run two seconds from two starts at Ipswich. On Friday, the four-year-old-mare, by dual Cox Plate winner So You Think, collected her maiden win at her 11th career start.

After 15mm rain on the previous day, the track was rated at soft 7 and retained that rating for the day.

While a couple of frosts earlier in the week discoloured the grass cover in part, the surface raced superbly again albeit with less than 50 horses in action.

RQ prizemoney returns

RACING Queensland has announced the return of prizemoney to pre-COVID levels from August 1.

During the past few months, prizemoney levels have reduced to build a bank to prop up clubs during the global pandemic.

"The Queensland racing industry had navigated a particularly challenging period,'' Racing Minister Stirling Hincliffe said.

Some punters welcome back

THE Ipswich Racetrack is finally open for members, punters and owners next Saturday, though on a restricted basis.

Under COVID-19 restrictions still in place, only 100 visitors are allowed into each of the Grange and Eye Liner Lounges which will be for first in, best dressed members and owners respectively.

The members area is almost full and the owner's area will open for reservations upon acceptances on Wednesday morning.

Additional members and owners will be able to access the meeting though not in the individual lounges with further details to come. These additional patrons will be accommodated on the Viewing Terrace and general public will also be permitted entry if spaces allow after members and owners have booked in.

This situation is not ideal for all however restrictions in place mean this is the best means of accommodating as many as possible and as fairly as possible.

Half century of Eye Liner Stakes

FOR the first time in more than a year there will be listed racing at the Ipswich Racetrack next Saturday.

The listed races are the Gai Waterhouse Fillies and Mares Classic and the Eye Liner Stakes.

The Eye Liner Stakes started in 1970 marking a half century of the race named after the great filly who raced in the colours of the Kruger family back in the late 1960s.

The winners of the race have included a host of top class gallopers such as Caulfield Cup winner Mighty Kingdom in 1980, and in more recent times other Group 1 winners Conservatorium and Smokin Joey.

The Gai Waterhouse Classic for fillies and mares has consistently grown in stature over the past couple of decades since being introduced on the card. The race gained listed status 15 years ago and the quality has continued to rise since.

The last edition of the race in 2019 was won by Ready to Prophet giving trainer Gai Waterhouse her first win in the race named in her honour. It also gave jockey Michael Cahill his fifth success in the race as the former Ipswich Cup and Ipswich Jockey Premiership winner enjoyed a stirling Queensland Winter Carnival.

Next meetings

IPSWICH scheduled racing is next week's Metropolitan Saturday meeting, prior to Friday July 24 and Thursday, July 30 to round out the month of racing.

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