IT will be business as usual for champion bush jockey Greg Ryan at today’s Tilstons Bec and Kents H Hardware Tradies Day meeting in Orange.
The Racing Orange board has attracted Group One-winning jockeys Hugh Bowman and Blake Shinn to ride on the day but Ryan isn’t concerned.
“It’s just another day. It’s no big deal,” Ryan said.
“There’ll be another dozen or so jockeys there to compete against. You’re just more focused on riding your own horse and getting every winner you can.”
Ryan admitted Bowman and Shinn’s presence might rattle some others.
“Maybe the younger ones might feel something a bit extra. I’m a bit old for that. I’ve been around too long,” the 46-year-old laughed.
Ryan said he’d ridden against Bowman and Shinn “plenty of times” before and he wasn’t nervous about today’s meeting.
Instead he’s focused on his seven rides at the eight-race meeting.
The country jockey is confident he has plenty of winning chances at today’s meeting.
“Paul Cave [Warwick Farm trainer] is bringing a couple up there to be strong chances for me,” Ryan explained.
“I’m riding a horse called Very Sheik [Brett Thompson - Gulgong] who I’ve won two of the last three on but he’s drawn a bad barrier , so he’s got to overcome that. I’ve got some very real chances.
“Jeff Brasch’s [Mudgee] horse, Cassie’s Favourite, it’ll also be a strong chance. I’ve got good winning chances for most of the day.”
For Cave, Ryan will ride The Captain’s Wife in the Kents H Hardware Maiden Handicap (1600m), Tango Valentino in the Rondo Building Supplies Benchmark 60 Handicap (2100m) and Blended in the Boral Benchmark 70 Handicap (1400m).
Ryan will be on board Cassie’s Favourite in the James Hardie Class 3 Handicap (1300m) and Very Sheik in the Fletcher Insulation Benchmark 55 Handicap (1000m).
Bowman has secured five rides today and Shinn will saddle up for three.
The top jockeys haven’t limited their services to the metropolitan trainers.
Orange’s Alison Smith has secured Bowman to ride Dancing King in the Stramit Maiden Plate (1280m) and Dubbo’s Michael Lunn has signed him up for Mulga Road in the AJ Pulie Class 3 Handicap (1600m).
Shinn will ride Antidotes for Dubbo trainer Gary Lunn in the Rondo Building Supplies Benchmark 60 Handicap (2100m).
Another area of interest is Melbourne Cup-winning trainer Lee Freedman and champion New Zealand trainer Graeme Rogerson having two runners at today’s meeting.
The pair is in a training partnership and will be represented by first starter Walkingaroundmoney in the Stramit Maiden Plate (1280m), and Mossamine in the Boral Benchmark 70 Handicap (1400m) with Bowman on board.
The Towac Park gates open at 12.30pm today and the first race jumps at 1.18pm. The last race is at 5.40pm.