Sport

Top hoops battling for honours

STUNNING FINISH: The Robbie Fradd-ridden Complicit (outside) dashes up the outside to win last week's opening race at Bundamba.
STUNNING FINISH: The Robbie Fradd-ridden Complicit (outside) dashes up the outside to win last week's opening race at Bundamba. David Nielsen

JOCKEY Robbie Fradd didn't need long to reclaim a clear lead in the Ipswich Jockeys Premiership.

He won aboard Complicit in the first race of the day at Ipswich last Friday.

Three-year-old Complicit is trained by Matt Dunn at Murwillumbah. Complicit is by boom sire Snitzel.

The owners of this galloper are high profile as well - China Horse Club Racing and the Vinery Stud.

Complicit was well favoured in the betting at $2.80 before coming home with a booming run late to catch the $2.10 favourite Ellersley on the line.

The step up to 1500 metres at his third start was clearly a key for Complicit who showed clear promise of more to come with the strong win.

Six meetings into the season and the jockeys are all having a real go at an Ipswich Premiership title.

Fradd went to a clear lead after his fifth win of the season aboard Complicit.

However, eight-time winner Jim Byrne struck in the next two races to move equal with Fradd.

Byrne's wins were aboard The King's Widow, for trainer Tony Gollan, and Redex for Toowoomba visitor Michael Nolan.

Nolan continued his great strike rate at Ipswich winning with his only entrant on Friday.

Another hoop made his move to become a new leader on the jockeys ladder late in the day as Luke Dittman picked up a winning double in the last two races.

The double moved Dittman to six season wins. His return yielded two wins and a third from three rides.

Dittman's winners were aboard The Monk, for Gold Coast trainer Peter Balzen, and Zoff of the World, for former Melbourne Cup winning trainer John Meagher.

Dittman, being tall of stature, has a relatively high riding weight and this restricts his opportunities to a degree. His winning strike rate however is among the highest in Queensland showing the ability of this jockey, despite limited opportunities.

Dittman's career winning strike rate of 17% is even higher than the champion Queensland jockey of the past couple of years Jeff Lloyd, whose career mark is at 16%.

Lloyd has however ridden around 20% over the past couple of years. Champion Ipswich rider Byrne has a career rate of 14%.

Ipswich's metro status

RACING at Ipswich this weekend is a rare Saturday date, and with an even rarer Metropolitan class meet.

There hasn't been a Saturday Metropolitan meeting at Ipswich apart from Cup Day for a few decades.

The prize money total of $575,000 is easily the second highest ever behind Cup Day.

There has been strong support from the Ipswich community with all function areas sold out and a large attendance of families expected in the holiday period.

Initial nominations in excess of 150 should ensure a strong nine-race card.

Free entry and a free fairground of attractions for families at the track should be of significant appeal.

A late addition to the fairground are water features including a water slide for children given the warmish conditions forecast.

Wonderful Winx

THE great mare Winx was at it again on Saturday collecting her 20th consecutive victory in the Group 1 Randwick Mile race formerly known as the George Main Stakes.

A headline story on 60 minutes on Sunday night showed the wider appeal of this fantastic race mare as she continues to promote all that is good about thoroughbred horse racing.

The other Group 1 winner on Saturday was Humidor in the Makybe Diva Stakes as he defeated hot favourite Hartnell. The Golden Rose is this weekend's Group 1.

Menari, who is sired by Snitzel, is an even money favourite on the back of his strong recent form.

Next meeting

Ipswich racing continues on Saturday, followed by a Metropolitan Wednesday meeting on September 27, which is also the date of the ITC Annual General Meeting.

Topics:  brett kitching ipswich racing highlights ipswich turf club jim byrne luke dittman robbie fradd turf chat