Focus on Robbo?s record attempt
By TONY WHITE
NATIONAL attention will focus on the Grafton July Racing Carnival over the next two days and wise cracking jockey Allan Robinson, poised to break the Australian riding record.
And today at Grafton, the colourful jockey will face a stewards hearing before the first race over an alleged assault of an ambulance officer behind the barriers at Grafton on Thursday.
The ambulance officer decided to withdraw his complaint for police to investigate the matter late on Monday. However, Robinson and other licensed persons will be interviewed today as stewards probe the incident that Robinson, protesting his innocence, claimed is "a nothing thing."
Robinson is just one win away from breaking Greg Ryan's Australian record of 216 winners for a season after riding one winner at Muswellbrook on Monday to take his tally to 215.5.
The 39-year-old set the NSW (193.5) and Australian record in 1999-2000 riding 207.5 winners. Since then Dubbo-based Ryan has set the national benchmark.
"I'll break the record by race two or three tomorrow," Robinson confidently predicted. "When I set the record in 1999-2000 I really wanted to do that but since then I've never really been worried about it.
"Paul Parry's dad Ron rang me up earlier this year and encouraged me to have a go at it saying this is the year.
"When I had my birthday on April 10, I was still 64 wins away, it was a bit of an ask, but I've managed to just about get there. I've only had six suspensions this year which has helped.
"I'm rapt I get the chance to break the record at Grafton. My word I'd love to do it over the carnival. Touch wood I've always had a good carnival and Grafton and the people up there have always been good to me."
His rides are: Wednesday, Secret Walk (race 1), Princess Pedrille (race 2), Pommard (race 3), Delphi Lodge (race 4), Gromm (race 5), Crystal Moss (race 6), Sir Breakfast (race 7) and Search For Glory (race 8).