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  • Writer's pictureJohn Curtis


Updated: Jul 10, 2023

Image: Bradley Photos

SUNDAY: July 9, 2023: TYLER Schiller wasted no time sealing both the apprentice and senior riding premierships at Hawkesbury’s final meeting of the season today.

Schiller began the meeting sharing the lead in both – and quickly put them beyond doubt by winning the first two races.

Not even a fourth race winner from rival Jay Ford on $17 chance Nabios in the Blakes Marine Maiden Handicap (1300m) could stand in his way, and Schiller put the icing on his cake by clinching a treble with a superb rails-hugging ride to score on Goulburn visitor Amarantz ($7) in the seventh race, the Godolphin Benchmark 64 Handicap (2000m).

Schiller took the opener, the Weddings At HRC Midway 2&3YO Maiden Handicap (1000m) on $2.40 favorite Hellova Nature for Newecastle trainer Nathan Doyle, and then landed the HRC Motel Maiden Plate (1800m) on another favorite, Deep Voyage ($1.55) for Matthew Smith.

Schiller’s treble took him to 12 Hawkesbury wins for the season, two ahead of Ford in the senior’s title, and three ahead of Lloyd, who did not ride at the meeting, in the apprentices’ premiership.

It was a fitting result for the talented young rider, who dead-heated with “stablemate” Tom Sherry in the 2020-21 apprentices’ premiership when both were under the guidance of now Hong Kong-based Mark Newnham.

Godolphin’s James Cummings (19 wins) claimed the trainers’ premiership from Chris Waller (16), with neither having a runner at today’s meeting.

Brad Widdup, who had placings with Harry Tudor ($8), Ausbred Bluebird ($21) and Good Omens ($12) today, was again the leading local trainer with nine wins.

. Edward Cummings kept the Hawkesbury flag flying at home, being the sole local trainer to enjoy success on the eight-race card.

And he would have been very unlucky not to have won with a resuming Strait Acer ($3.10), who snatched the Lander Toyota Class 1 Handicap (1300m) from Kangaroo Court ($3.50) in the last stride, after being disappointed for clear running for quite some distance in the straight.

Cummings got the lightly-raced Headwater three-year-old ready on the back of two barrier trials, and he did an excellent job to hump 60.5kg to post his second win; having scored on the Kensington track last December at only his second start.

Now that Strait Acer has returned in winning form, Cummings is looking to a Benchmark 72 Handicap (1300m) at Royal Randwick on July 29 against his own age, attempting to secure another success before season’s end.

Strait Acer’s victory on top of Mike Van Gestel’s Newcastle triumph with No Statement yesterday took to 191 the number of winners prepared by Hawkesbury trainers so far this season.

. The final premiership standings were:


T. Schiller (a) 12

J. Ford 10

R. King 9

Z. Lloyd (a) 9

K. Latham 8

J. Collett 8


J. Cummings 19

C. Waller 16

B. Widdup 9

N. Doyle 9

G. Ryan & S. Alexiou 8


T. Schiller 12

Z. Lloyd 9

D. Gibbons 5

R. Jones 4

H. Williams 4

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