Tatura-based jockey Lee Smith provided connections with a profitable day at Deniliquin on Saturday, taking out a treble at the club’s annual cup meeting.
Smith travelled to the NSW track for a full book of rides, and opened his account in the first race with a quarter-of-a-length win on Excellent Art mare, Pikelets, for Mornington trainer Rob Blacker.
Smith and Blacker paired up earlier in the year for victory for the same connections with Cheeky Ben at Albury.
After the pair recorded a close third placing recently at the Broken Hill Cup meeting, Smith also guided Keep The Faith gelding Keep Digging to claim victory at Deniliquin for Benalla-based Jim Scott; Smith rode Scott’s Hillman mare, Mighty Magpie to a third placing earlier on the card.
Finishing fifth in the feature race with Emma Steel’s Callisto Moon, Smith was unable to replicate his Deniliquin Cup win from 2016 with Mick Cornish and Donna Gaskin’s Mywordsaidthebird.
He closed the meeting with a win over the favourite on locally-trained Moss Magic (Russell Mutimer, Tatura) at 8-1. By Mossman, the mare raced at Tatura on Monday and backed up over the distance trip on Saturday to score by 1.25 length.
Smith moved to Tatura in 2016 following an extended period on the sidelines after two unlucky injuries.
He rides locally for trainers Vern Proctor, Phil Evans and Trevor Miles, but has the ‘have saddle, will travel’ mentality, travelling regularly to Echuca, Wangaratta, Wodonga and Bendigo for track work and trials.
Raised in Melbourne, and apprenticed at Cranbourne, Smith relocated to Tasmania as a senior jockey and had considerable success on the Apple Isle, including a win in the Tasmanian Derby in 2010 aboard cult horse, Gees Gees Blackflash, out-riding Nash Rawiller aboard Gai Waterhouse’s favourite to claim the Listed (now Group 3) classic.