Emerald 100 win a triumph for Rocky apprentice Nikki Olzard.

Published 17 October 2023

Emerald 100 win a triumph for Rocky apprentice Nikki Olzard.

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The recent increase in numbers of the Rockhampton jockeying ranks, was evident out at Emerald last Saturday where they rode the card of five winners. 

Pioneer Park racecourse’s signature race meeting of the year, the $15,000 Emerald Ford Emerald 100 (1850m) was deemed an outstanding success after a crowd of 3000 partying and well behaved, colourfully dressed racegoers on a picture-perfect hot day, created a vibrant atmosphere.

Out on the first-class matted turf track that could not have been presented any better by curator Raymond Williams, winners came from up front and well back thereby demonstrating no track bias.  

Apprentice McKenzie Apel was awarded the trophy for “Leading Jockey of the Day” by riding two winners, the first for her master, the Ricky Vale trained Arbat ($2.50) in the Ensham Resources Maiden (1200m).

McKenzie was once again in favour with punters when local trainer Glenda Bell’s Demurral ($2.25) scored easily in the RDO Equipment BM 55 (1615m).

That win as well as training two second placegetters in Astra Wally and Yubetido, earned Glenda sufficient points to take out the “Trainer of the Day” title. 

Former English galloper Motamayiz (GB) (Nizzi Olzard, $5.00), provided Mackay trainer John Manzelmann with his third Emerald 100 following in the hooves of Bawaardi (2011) and The Greatest (2018). 

Motamayiz (GB) finished resolutely to stave off the Kristie-Clark Peoples Rockhampton trained Centaur (Robbie Faehr, $5.00) by a length with Svindal (Tasha Chambers, $10.00) a half-head back third.

Race favourite the very heavily backed Tom Button, Bowen trained Four Mile Lane (Gabby Semmens, $3.50) lead clearly into the straight and boxed on gamely to finish just 1.7 lengths away from the winner in fourth position.

The Emerald 100 win was certainly a triumph for Rocky apprentice Nikki Olzard 18, who certainly has an affinity with Motamayiz (GB).

“That’s my fourth ride on him for three wins and a second and one of the earlier wins was the Middlemount Cup a few months back”, Nikki said.

 The thrill of the chase to add an Emerald 100 to her record in so short a time in the saddle (commenced May 27 – now 24 winners) was obvious by the teenage apprentice’s winning smile that she could not have wiped off her face even had she wished to.

Despite the win in the Emerald 100 which is a qualifying race as part of the Country Cups Challenge Series, Motamayiz (NZ) is ineligible to compete in the $200,000 Final (1600m) run at Doomben on Saturday, December 2.

That’s because Motamayiz (GB) had won a $60K metropolitan race at Moonee Vally, Melbourne in December last year when trained by Bevan Laming which was not in tandem with the qualifying conditions.

That honour now goes to Rockhampton trainer Centaur, a most consistent and worthy candidate to represent Central Queensland in the big Brisbane Final. 

At his previous start Centaur had been runner-up in the Longreach Cup after a fine fourth in the Birdsville Cup which followed an Aramac Cup win. 

Kristie-Clark Peoples the trainer of the Cluster 7-Y-0 gelding was much relieved when informed that Centaur had qualified and would again be heading down to the Brisbane Final.

“He ran third last year in the Country Cup Final at Doomben to Echo Point. I had to rush his preparation last year to ensure he qualified by running him under 64.5kg a fortnight before at Gympie. Now I have time up my sleeve and I don’t have to repeat that, and he is a horse that likes his runs spaced”, Kristie explained.

Astute Callaghan Park trainer Graeme Green who makes a happy knack of always having at least one good horse in his stable, has come up with another in the form of Tony and Helen Yeates’ No Nay Never (USA)-Blue Desert Moon 6YO gelding named Blue Kentucky Moon (Warwick Satherley, $3.30). 

He stylishly won the $15,000 Outback Flooring Lightning Handicap (1000m) signifying that a short course Brisbane win is well within his scope, a forecast that his winning rider Warwick Satherley shared.

“It was a sound win and if the right race is found for him down there (Brisbane) he is certainly up to it”, Satherley said. 

Green only took over the training of Blue Kentucky Moon from the Gold Coast’s Michael Morrison in April this year and has now won two from three with the sprinter following a previous start Callaghan Park win.

Winning owner, Brisbane’s Helen Yeates bred Blue Kentucky Moon and has enjoyed a prolific winning run from the horse’s family.

“’That’s 56 wins for that family know”, Helen said proudly at the trophy presentation while also remarking on how big the crowd was on course.

Earlier, Rockhampton jockey Tasha Chambers teamed with Roma trainer Craig Smith to win the Ampcontrol QTIS Benchmark 50 (1280m) with Real Saga 5YO Craig And Hoff ($5.00). 

Emerald Jockey Club president Michael Shields was upbeat about the success of the race day.

“There was a sea of people and colour and the club is so thankful for the support of everyone who contributed to the day. Thanks of course to the patrons, the racing stakeholders, my committee and all the staff and voluntary workers. A massive amount of time and effort goes into putting on this meeting every year for the community to enjoy and to see it go off so successfully and without incident is very fulfilling. Thanks everyone”, Michael said.

Racing returns to Emerald again on Saturday, November 25.


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