By Tony Megahey
While regional riding champions Robert Thompson and Greg Ryan carry the overwhelming support of punters on most favourites at Monday’s Tamworth TAB meeting, wily Scone veteran Stephen Jones typically offers value.
Thompson and Ryan have a dozen rides between them throughout the regional seven-race TAB meeting and most are short enough. Particularly with Thompson who has long passed four thousand career wins and rides four well- credentialed Allan Denham charges most dominant in betting markets.
The veteran marvels also ride for other profile stables of Rod Northam and Sue Grills.
The widely travelled Jones returns from a trip to the Gold Coast with a degree of confidence in four runners at lengthy odds as he relies upon lesser profile former Queensland jockeys Jackson Morris and Skye Bogenhuber to upset the Hall Of Famers.
Bogenhuber, who has linked with Brett Cavanough at Scone, has won several Toowoomba premierships. Earlier in the season she won a Group Two sprint at Caloundra on Cavanough’s stable star The Monstar.
Jones continues his long association with prolific racing breeder and entrepreneur Gerry Harvey. They combine at value with Morris on lightly raced prospect Palais De Louvre in the Craig Martin uses Hygain NV1 Maiden (1400m).
“She’s a lovely mare that has always shown ability- bad barrier manners held her back,” Jones explained. “But we’ve sorted them now and I’m confident she’ll be competitive back in grade from running decent races at Wyong and Scone. “We’re drawn wide but she’s progressed.”
Jones believes his three-year-old filly Ain’tabay can be a major improver in the Dennett Racing uses Hygain Feeds Maiden (1200m) to be ridden by Bogenhuber.
“Skye rode her in a trial and she showed enough for her to stick,” he said. “She ran down the track on debut but she drew the extreme outside and is definitely better than that. Improver for sure with any luck from the middle.”
Consistent Revere is Jones’ best on the day to be ridden by Morris in a Luke Morgan uses Hygain Micrspeed BM 58 (1600m).
“Hoof on the till this one,” he said. “He’s drawn out but he’s just so consistent and honest. Could have won his past couple when he was beaten in photos.”
Jones winds up the day with Harvey bred and owned Herzegovina in the Sue Grills uses Hygain Feeds Class I (1400m).
“Lovely progressive colt, he won well leading at Tamworth off a harder Newcastle race,” he said. “We’re drawn and his last run was good enough for this grade.” Tamworth at present is a good four track rating in overcast conditions.”