Wanted: Jockeys for Lismore
By GRAHAME TIMBRELL email@example.com SATURDAY'S non-TAB meeting at the Lismore Racecourse, featuring the South Lismore Cup, could be compromised by a lack of jockeys.
Coffs Harbour also races on Saturday with an early bird TAB meeting and the majority of Northern Rivers and mid North Coast jockeys are riding there.
Port Macquarie and Beaudesert, two other areas that Lismore could have drawn from, are also running non-TAB meetings, soaking up even more of the available jockey pool.
"This highlights the lack of depth in our riding ranks, both along the coast and in country racing generally," Lismore Turf Club secretary Michael Timbrell said.
"You can't blame jockeys for wanting to ride at Coffs Harbour where the greater prizemoney is but it leaves us in a difficult situation.
"So far we have seven jockeys but we have two races with 12 runners each, one with eight and one with nine. If we can't find extra jockeys, horses are going to have to be scratched."
Jockeys committed so far include dual premiership winner Darron Coleman, Lorna Cook, Bernadette Payne, Queensland's Cyril Small and Lester Karklis and apprentices Motoki Okada and Melinda Kinny.
Trainers yesterday were searching far and wide trying to find more riders.
The Lismore meeting coincides with the start of the Randwick autumn carnival.