Racing: Allpress' wait for milestone continues

By Shane Hurndell

Top marks Lisa Allpress ... your relaxed approach and patience will be rewarded, possibly today.

The Wanganui jockey had the opportunity to become the country's first female jockey to ride 1000 winners at Hawke's Bay Racing's raceday in Hastings yesterday.

After collecting her 998th at Te Teko on Monday, she needed two on the firm Hastings track.

With two seconds and a third among her six rides, Allpress, 37, went close.

"I thought I had a couple of chances but they were just chances. Even the couple of horses I had which don't mind a firm track were jarring up ... you can't win races if the horses aren't hitting the ground as well as they should," Allpress explained, after finishing sixth on Hoofsain Bolt in her final ride of the day and an extra after Opie Bosson withdrew with a hand injury collected the previous day.

Allpress admitted she isn't overly worried about the milestone.

"I'm going to get it eventually it's just a matter of taking things race by race and day by day."

A winner of 66 races at Hastings during an illustrious career, Allpress said she hasn't thought about how she will celebrate the milestone.

"Obviously I'm going to enjoy it but it's just a number and it's not going to be the end of anything," she said. "Probably when I've retired it will be something to look back on but I will still keep on going once it's happened."

With another five rides booked in Christchurch today, it could happen at Riccarton.

"I'll be happy just to get a winner," she said.

If it doesn't happen today Allpress will have another opportunity at one of the bigger Otago meetings of the year in Dunedin on Saturday.

She intends to race at the next Hastings meeting on March 2.

"I rank Hastings high among my favourite tracks ... I'll be back again," she said.

In her first race yesterday, Allpress was third on Lightning Lucy, a four-year-old mare trained by Kevin Gray. During the first four years of her career Allpress was an apprentice for Gray.

Her next outing was the day's second race and she was second on Xibit, just over a length behind 'Er Indoors. Allpress had a DNF in her third outing when Coljoy pulled up in race three.

She was able to have a well deserved breather in the hot conditions when Wowowow was scratched from the day's feature race, the JM Bostock Limited 2000. Allpress collected another second aboard La Hoya, the favourite in the sixth race, by a long neck behind Saint Kitt.

With two races remaining and the photographers hovering in hope of capturing the historical moment, it wasn't to be. An eighth on Floral Scent in the seventh ended the crowd's hopes of witnessing history.

- Hawkes Bay Today

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