Jimmy Orman set to take on Australia's best apprentices
RACING: Apprentice jockey Jimmy Orman will have his work cut out for him when he rides outsider Any Given Bender at Sandown, Victoria, today.
Selected for the National Apprentice Series, the Gatton jockey will ride Lenny Xuereb's four-year-old gelding in the 1200m handicap, racing against the best apprentice jockeys in Australia.
Currently leading the Queensland jockeys and apprentices premiership tables with 101 wins for the season, Orman, 18, has been keeping an eye on the Sandown program.
"It's going to be a good experience," Orman said.
"It will be good to see how I rate against the best apprentices in Australia."
It's not the first time Orman has been selected for the National Apprentice Series.
Last year he raced at Launceston but wasn't able to get a winner.
But it's the first time Orman will race in Victoria and despite drawing the outsider of the race, he's optimistic about the track.
"It's obviously an advantage to the Victorian jockeys (racing at Sandown) because they know the track, but we'll walk it and work it out," he said.
Any Given Bender will be racing for his second win, after claiming his maiden in December at Traralgon.
Gippsland based-trainer Xuereb said it would be an interesting race, especially drawing barrier nine.
"It's the sort of track where you don't want to go too hard too early," Xeureb said.
"He's the lowest rated horse, so I'd say we're the outsider of the field."
With eight claims left on his apprenticeship, Orman is looking for significant wins during the Queensland Winter Racing carnival to secure his future.
Racing Queensland Senior Apprentice Coach Shane Scriven said the nationals were designed to reward the apprentices not only for their riding achievements but their academic attitude.
"Jimmy has been selected due to his efforts both on and off the track," Scriven said.
Orman will race in the Queensland leg of the series on March 9 at Doomben.