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Rising Star Series

Racing NSW Rising Star Apprentice Series 2023/24

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Anna Roper Claims Rising Star Series Title


By Mark Brassel

A highly consistent season by 21-year-old Anna Roper has seen the young jockey rewarded with the crown for this season’s Rising Star Series.

Anna Roper - the 2024 Rising Star Series champion. Image by Bradley Photographers

Roper, who hails from Mangrove Mountain around 30 minutes inland from Wyong on the NSW Central Coast, has journeyed far and wide in her quest to win the title and her efforts have been duly rewarded.

Anna Roper booted home heat winners at Taree (Emphatic Bel), Queanbeyan (Magic Stella) and on the Kensington Track (Desiah).

Along with second placings at Warwick Farm and Muswellbrook, Anna finished the Series with 35 points, nine points clear of Kembla Grange apprentice Olivia Chambers.

Amy McLucas and Benjamin Osmond tied for third place on 23 points. A presentation will be made to both Anna Roper and runner-up Olivia Chambers.

Although Anna had an unassailable lead coming into the final heat at Taree, unfortunately the meeting was washed out.

Roper joins the prestigious Rising Star Series Honour Roll with recent winners Jasper Franklin (2023), Jenny Duggan (2022) and Mikayla Weir (2021).

Check out the Rising Star Series page for the latest point score, honour roll, conditions, etc – Rising Star Series

35 - Anna ROPER
26 - Olivia CHAMBERS
23 - Amy McLUCAS, Benjamin OSMOND
22 - Zac WADICK
18 - Mollie FITZGERALD
13 - Rebecca BRONETT PRAG, Beany PANYA
12 - Jake BARRETT
11 - Zac LLOYD, Hannah WILLIAMS
10 - Dylan GIBBONS
9 - Chelsea HILLIER, Camille HOULGATTE, Braith NOCK

William Stanley secured his inaugural Rising Star triumph by clinching the top spot in Heat 15 at Dubbo on Monday, February 5th.

William Stanley secured his inaugural Rising Star victory after taking out Heat 15 at Dubbo on Monday, February 5th. William Stanley scored a narrow victory onboard Dream Game for trainer Cecil Hodgson, defeating Chelsea Hillier (2nd, Owhata Crumpet) and Benjamin Osmond (3rd, Devil's Inn).

Anna Roper maintains a comfortable nine-point lead in the series and is now poised to be crowned the overall Series Winner with only one Heat remaining at Taree on Sunday, February 11th. Roper has accumulated 35 points to date, highlighted by victories at Taree (January 9th), Queanbeyan (January 23rd), and Kensington (January 31st).

Olivia Chambers (26 points) is currently second on the points ladder and leads the charge for the Rising Star runner-up trophy.


Anna Roper has moved another step closer to being crowned Rising Star Champion following her victory in Heat 14 of the Series at Kensington on Wednesday (January 31).

A well-timed ride by Roper resulted in the 21-year-old clinching victory on board Desiah for trainer Ciaron Maher, with Zac Lloyd (Hanau) and Dylan Gibbons (Infancy) rounding out the placings.

Roper (34 points) now boasts an eight-point lead in the Series, ahead of Olivia Chambers (26), Amy Lucas (23) and Zac Wadick (22).

Only two heats remain in the Series with Roper declaring she will be contesting both rounds at Dubbo (February 5) and Taree (February 11).


Olivia Chambers secured her third win in the Rising Star Series this season, triumphing in Heat 13 at Goulburn on Tuesday, January 30.

Teaming up with Super Norwest from the stables of local trainer Matthew Dale, Chambers outpaced her rivals, with Angus Villiers (2nd, Little Baia) and Coriah Keatings (3rd, Single Beat) trailing behind.

With a total of 24 points, Chambers now holds the second spot on the Rising Star leaderboard, closely trailing Series leader Anna Roper, who has accumulated 27 points. As the competition heats up, several apprentices are still in the running for the coveted Series Winner title, with just three heats remaining.

The action continues with Heat 14 scheduled at Kensington on Wednesday, January 31st, followed by Dubbo on February 5th, and Taree hosting the final Heat on February 11th.


Anna Roper secured her second consecutive victory in the Rising Star Series by triumphing in Heat 12 at Queanbeyan on Tuesday, January 23rd.

Teaming up with Magic Stella under trainer Denim Wynen, Roper clinched the win in a thrilling photo finish, narrowly beating Amy McLucas on Danjel and Beany Panya on Tiger Town.

With this latest triumph, Roper has strengthened her position at the top of the Series leaderboard, amassing a total of 26 points. She now leads over her closest competitors, Amy McLucas with 22 points and Zac Wadick with 20 points.

The upcoming Heat 13 of the Series is scheduled to take place at Goulburn on January 30th.


Anna Roper is the new Rising Star leader following her victory in Heat 11 of the series at Taree on Tuesday (January 9th).

Talented rider Anna Roper, in partnership with Emphatic Bel, secured the win for trainer Denim Wynen, propelling her to the top of the leaderboard. Zac Wadick, riding My Mum's Toyboy, finished as the runner-up, while Mollie Fitzgerald, riding Grand Horizon, claimed the third position.

Earlier in the day, Olivia Chambers achieved her second Rising Star win for the series by winning Heat 10 at Orange.

Olivia rode Elson Boy to victory for trainer Dar Lunn, defeating Courtney Ferris, riding Bondadosa, and Hannah Williams, riding Merisi.

With 19 points, Anna Roper currently leads after 11 heats. Benjamin Osmond and Zac Wadick are tied in the box seat, each boasting 18 points, ahead of Amy McLucas and Mollie Fitzgerald, who share 17 points apiece.

Heat 12 is scheduled to take place at Queanbeyan on January 23rd.


Rebecca Bronett Prag celebrated her first Rising Star Series victory while taking out Heat 9 at Muswellbrook on Thursday (January 4th).

Bronnett Prag partnered with Elegant Empress for trainer Annabel Neasham to score narrow victory from Anna Roper (riding He's Purring) and Sarah McDonough (Crop Duster).

Benjamin Osmond and Amy McLucas share the Rising Star Series lead boasting 17 points apiece with Mollie Fitzgerald (14 points), Zac Wadwick (13) and Anna Roper (12) closing the gap.

Orange will host Heat 10 on January 9th with only seven Heats remaining.

Taree will host the final 2023/24 Heat on February 11th.


Benjamin Osmond celebrated his second Rising Star Series victory for the season after winning Heat 8 at Kembla Grange on Thursday (December 14th).

Osmond scored aboard Hellova Nature for trainer Nathan Doyle with Amy McLucas (riding Beneficio) and Rebecca Bronett Prag (riding Zippy Zoo) rounding out the placings.

Benjamin Osmond is the new Series leader with 1 point lead ahead of Amy McLucas (16 points) and Mollie Fitzgerald (13).

Muswellbrook will host Heat 9 on January 4th.


Amy McLucas celebrated her first Rising Star Series victory for the season after winning Heat 7 at Warwick Farm on Wednesday (December 6th).

McLucas scored aboard Miss Checkoni for trainer Nick Mitchell with Anna Roper (riding Crystal Waters) and Zac Wadick (Buba) rounding out the placings.

Mollie Fitzgerald remains the Series leader with 13 points ahead of Zac Wadick (12 points) and Amy McLucas (11).

Kembla Grange will host Heat 8 on December 14th.


Zac Wadick celebrated his first Rising Star Series victory after taking out Heat 6 at Coffs Harbour on Thursday (November 30th).

Wadick greeted the judge on board Kaihoko for trainer Colt Posser, defeating Mollie Fitzgerald (Cardsharp) and Mitch Stapleford (Yareakh).

Mollie Fitzgerald is the new Rising Star leader with 13 points and sits ahead of Jake Barrett, Olivia Chambers, Benjamin Osmand and Zac Wadick who boast 9 points apiece.

Warwick Farm will host Heat 7 next Wednesday, December 6th.


Camille Houlgatte celebrated her first Rising Star Series victory after taking out Heat 5 at Scone on Monday (November 20th).

Houlgatte saluted the judge to score a comfortable win with Angara for trainer Paul Perry.

Dylan Gibbons placed second on board Bangetta with Braith Nock third on Foolish.

Jake Barrett and Olivia Chambers, each boasting 9 points, share the Rising Star lead after 5 heats in what is shaping to be a hotly contested series.

Coffs Harbour will host Heat 6 on November 30th.


Olivia Chambers jumps to equal leader in the NSW Apprentice Jockey Rising Star series

Olivia Chambers has joined Jake Barrett at the top of the Rising Star leaderboard after winning heat 4 on YOU’RE ON MUTE today at Gundagai.

Apprenticed to the Robert and Luke Price team at Kembla Grange, Olivia made today’s trip to the Snake Gully Cup Raceday worthwhile early with a comfortable win in the Class 1 Showcase Handicap for Wagga Trainer Darryl Burnett.

Sitting midfield throughout, Olivia easily found clear room at the 200m to sprint home and find the line strongly after a confident ride.

Maintaining a perfect record, You’re on Mute recorded her second win from as many starts, resuming today after winning her Maiden at Tumut in April earlier this year.

Dubbo apprentice Ronald Simpson ran second just over a length away riding Wolf Bay for his boss Clint Lundholm, after being held up in the straight and finishing quickly when he gained clear passage near the inside.

Teghan Martin riding Vaderzan was closing out wide to run 3rd, with Damon Budler 4th on the tiring Sharp Noise.

Olivia Chambers and Jake Barrett are now joint leaders in the Rising Star Series table on 9 points, with other heat winners Beany Panya and Millie Fitzgerald next placed both on 7 points.

The keenly contested apprentice race series heads North now, with the next two heats at Scone on November 20 and Coffs Harbour November 30.


Beany Panya takes the Gosford Heat of the Rising Star

Warwick Farm apprentice Beany Panya claimed Heat 3 of the Apprentice Rising Star Series with a perfectly timed run to grab Zac Lloyd right on the line at Gosford today.

Riding for Warwick Farm Trainer Bruce Cross on Calmer Karma, Beany held her mount for the right time to arrive on the inside in a driving finish from fellow Warwick Farm Apprentice Zac Lloyd riding Appetite For Risk for Trainer Bryce Heys.

Back to Back wins for Calmer Karma had a smiling Bruce Cross praise Beany for the well-timed ride, saying ‘the horse only has a very short sprint and she held her nerve perfectly to time the finishing run’.

3rd place went to Amy McLucas riding Yorokiri for Paul Perry, with Jett Stanley placing 4th on the favourite and last start winner Kadall for Team Snowden.

The 7 points for the win pushes Beany near the top of the leaderboard in the early series results, with early leader Jake Barret holding his place at the top of the table.

All eyes turn to Gundagai this coming Friday November 17, hosting the fourth round at its famous Snake Gully Cup race meeting.


Mollie Fitzgerald and Benjamin Osmond dead-heat for their first Rising Star Win At Grafton

Taree apprentice Mollie Fitzgerald shared her first Rising Star Series winner with Newcastle’s Benjamin Osmond in a thrilling finish at Grafton today.

After a well-judged ride, 1st year apprentice Mollie riding Dorset Coast for Murwillumbah trainer Matt Dunn, headed Benjamin’s mount Velvet Haze for his boss, Trainer Kris Lees, only for him to fight back in the last few strides.

A long delay ensued before the judge posted that the mare had done enough under Benjamin’s urging to share the spoils – a dead heat for first. Imprinted, ridden by Courtney Bellamy was a very close 3rd.

The two winning riders accrued 6 points each in the series for the dead heat, to sit equal 2nd on the ladder to 1st round winner Jake Barrett on 7 points. Hannah Williams is next on 5 points.

Jake rode the First heat winner at Wagga on Friday last, piloting the Kerry Weir trained Laurel Hill to victory in another thrilling finish over Hannah Williams on Bold Triumph.

The two had gone neck and neck to the winning post after hitting the front together at the 200 metre mark, with Jake prevailing by a long head on the line. Coriah Keatings finished 3rd on Release The Brakes.

The next heat (3) of the 2023/24 Rising Star Series will be run at Gosford on 14th November, with Gundagai hosting the fourth round at its famous Snake Gully Cup race meeting on Friday 17th November.


Rising Star Series Conditions

1. The Series is open to NSW and ACT indentured apprentice riders who are enrolled at Racing NSW Apprentice Schools.

2. Preference will be given to apprentice riders who, in order:

  • (i) fulfil the requirements of the NSW Apprentice and Traineeship Act of 2001.
  • (ii) are on loan from another state (for longer than two months) and who have been placed with the trainer of a horse nominated in a heat.
  • (iii) are on loan from another country and do not fit the requirements of Part (i).

Riders from Category (ii) and (iii) may ride in a heat but may not attain points. Individual awards for heats shall be made to the highest placed rider from Category (i).

In the event that there are insufficient qualified apprentice riders available on the day of a series race, after confirmation from the Racing NSW Training Dept, Stewards may permit an Interstate Apprentice Jockey who does not qualify under Category (ii) to ride. These riders may not attain points.

3. The Rising Star Racing Colours will be carried by the apprentice leading the series at the time the heat is run, or if the leading rider is not competing, the topweight will carry the colours.

4. Points will be awarded for each race on the following basis:

(i) First Place - 7 points; Second Place - 5 points; Third Place - 3 points; Fourth Place – 2 points; All other placings - 1 point
(ii) In the case of a dead heat, the effected placing's points shall be added together then divided by the number of dead heaters.
(iii) If an apprentice is declared for a ride and the horse is subsequently scratched, the apprentice will gain one point.

5. Apprentices who are due to come out of their time during the period of the Rising Star series will be eligible to compete until such time as their apprenticeship finishes. These apprentices will also be eligible to become the overall Rising Star Series winner, with points earned in the races in which they are eligible to ride to be considered in the final tally.

6. All heats will be restricted to 12 starters.

7. At the conclusion of all scheduled Series Heats, the rider who has accumulated the most points will be declared the Rising Star Series Champion.

(i). In the event of more than one rider finishing on equal points after the last Heat, a count-back will occur. The Apprentice with the most race wins, and subsequently the most 2nds then 3rds within the series will be declared the outright winner.

8. Racing NSW can amend the Rising Star Series Conditions at any time, to ensure equal opportunity for all participants.

Rising Star Series: Honour Roll

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