View the nominations for the 2016 Claret Stakes. The Claret Stakes will be run on Saturday 30th April at Hawkesbury racecourse.
|1||AJANI||C||2||Peter & Paul Snowden|
|5||OUTBACK RAIN||F||2||David Brideoake|
A trip to Ireland last year has paved the way for Australia’s leading jumps rider Steven Pateman to return at the end of the season.
Pateman rode work for champion trainer Willie Mullins, twice a Melbourne Cup visitor who prepared Max Dynamite to run second in last year’s race, while attending a wedding in December.
“I really enjoyed it and they said I could come back,” Pateman said.
“I would be well down the list in the pecking order but if I’m there for five or six months I might be able to work my way up a bit.
“You never know what might happen.”
With the Warrnambool three-day carnival approaching and the jumps season getting into full swing, Pateman is the go-to man at this time of year.
He heads to Gawler on Monday to partner two of Patrick Payne’s jumpers in a hurdle and steeplechase before he sets his sights on the Warrnambool meeting from May 3.
But he’s really looking forward to joining forces with Mullins which he says can only improve his riding skills.
“You’re riding the best jumpers in the world every morning and you’re around the best jumps jockeys in the world, so you’ve got to improve,” he said.
“That’s what I found even in the short time I was there before.”
Pateman knows it won’t be easy breaking into the Irish riding ranks but says if he can pick up one ride a fortnight for Mullins and a few outside rides it will make the decision to head overseas worthwhile.
If he gets enough rides he says he would like to stay through until the famed Cheltenham festival towards the end of March.
“Cheltenham would be the ultimate,” Pateman said.
“I’m just hoping to do my best and you never know what could happen.
“If I could get a ride a fortnight for Willie and a few other rides for other people it would be better than riding trackwork here over summer.
“I’m pretty much done with that.”
Pateman’s usual summer routine is to ride work for Ciaron Maher as he waits for the jumps season to start.
“Ciaron’s great, but you’re not riding any jumpers over summer, schooling horses or anything like that,” he said.
“It’s really boring.”