Home' Sydney Morning Herald Form Guide : November 19th 2010 Contents 1HERSA1 G002
Saturday's group and listed races
Perth: Railway Stakes (G1), Carbine Club
Of WA Stakes (L), Tattersall's Cup (L),
Placid Ark Stakes (L)
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2 the form Friday, November 19, 2010
Great ride and Webster still
thriving in family environment
'I couldn't really see
the finish but saw
Wayne jumping in the
air and I knew he had
won.' Pat Webster
Tough school . . . Pat Webster, in his days as a jockey, at Randwick in 1968 and, below, at Kembla in 2008. Photos: Fairfax archives, Dave Tease
M alcolm Johnston rode
Pat Webster's first
winner, at 300-1, as
trainer. Earlier Web-
ster scored at his first race ride as
an apprentice at Geurie on a
bodgie birth certificate and he tri-
umphed at his first Randwick
engagement, in the Carrington
Stakes. The Parkes Cup is another
Plunges galore, too, on country
and provincial tracks, coupled
with group wins in town litter his
career, but Webster's highlight
was his recent Hawkesbury Cup
success with Thankgodyou'rehere
because of the involvement with
his son Wayne, now training in
partnership with him.
''A son can win a grand final but
his father isn't part of it. To share
in a partnership like training is
different,'' Webster recalled at the
200 Years Of Horse Racing in NSW
Dinner last Sunday, greatest
memories being a feature.
Now 60, Webster has had a col-
ourful career. Starting as a tall,
gangling bush apprentice, he
graduated to Sydney but, not sur-
prisingly, outgrew the saddle.
Renowned for his laconic wit,
Webster has survived quite nicely
due to his skill as a horseman,
which takes in his adroit placing
of ordinary types. If anything,
with the assistance of Wayne, 33,
a former chef with the Intercon-
tinental on his form sheet, the
stable is reaching new heights.
But firstly the moulding of the
father . . . ''My mother died when I
was 12 and I went to Betty Lane
and Tiger Holland at Geurie,''
Lane, then in the bush, became
the first woman trainer to be gran-
ted a No.1 licence by the Australi-
an Jockey Club. Holland, her
partner, was one of the great char-
acters and it wore off on Webster.
''Went to the Geurie races with a
horse, and Tiger said, 'Come on,
Aloysious,' that's what he called
me, 'you're riding Bally Royal' . . . I
said, 'I can't ride today, I'm 14'. [He
said,] 'Don't worry, your father has
fixed your birth certificate'.
(Apprentices had to be 15 before
getting a ticket.)
''Tigerwasgreattome. . .at
Geurie [race course] you went
down a dip and went out of sight.
Tiger taught me [that] just as
you're going down grab a [opposi-
tion] saddlecloth and get a tow . . .''
Kindergarten was tough, partic-
ularly getting lessons from the likes
of Ned Dougherty, Doc Logue
(father of Maurice), Spike Jones,
Merv Sing Ho and Harry Williams.
''Talk about the Dirty Dozen,''
Webster stressed. ''You got amon-
gst them, they grabbed anything
and knocked you down.''
And even made him an offer he
couldn't refuse. Webster was told
to take the mount in the Parkes
Cup on Golden Draw. No worries,
he led all the way. But there was a
problem with the weight.
''When you come back in for
correct weight, the clerk of the
course hangs his coat above the
scales,'' the kid was told and that
was his lever. On his return he
noticed ''the old bloke bent over to
check the weight, they were bath-
room scales. While he was down
I'm trying to manipulate to get the
hand [of the scales] on the required
Finally achieved, it proved more
difficult than winning the race.
After 12 months Lane and Hol-
land decided Webster should relo-
cate to Sydney, where he joined
Bernie Byrnes. Making his Rand-
wick debut, handling Medieval
Maestro, he beat Somebody (Bill
Burnett) by a short half -head,
Aureo (Des Lake), Farnworth
(George Moore) and Calmness
(Frank White). At the time he didn't
think it would get any better.
Midgets become giants in the
saddle, but there have been few
larger apprentices than Webster.
''I was taller than Thommo [Long
Jack Thompson],'' he
remembered. ''He gave me a pair
of silks when I was a kid and they
were too small.''
Allan Denham was also very tall
but Webster reckons present-day
star Steven Arnold was in the same
category. ''I looked him in the eye,''
he said. ''Steven was here with
[Lee] Freedman and couldn't get a
ride. He had beautiful hands. I had
this little thing, Waylaid, and I sent
Arnold up [to Newcastle] with the
owner in a two-horse float and he
ran second in a maiden.
''Look at him now on a champi-
on [So You Think] and riding the
favourite for the Melbourne Cup --
he came a long way.''
Webster admits Silver Ketch, the
first horse he trained, caught him
by surprise. ''It was at Canterbury
back in about 1970 or 1973,'' he
explained. ''I was getting her ready
for the race and she got colic, so we
didn't back her. You could see the
oil coming out of her bum in the
enclosure from the treatment.
''We hadn't worked her for four
days. Later I recalled the saying
about the Royal Yacht breed,
'Train 'em like a drunk. Just put
the bridle on and take it off '.''
Very few horses, if any, have got
under Webster's guard since Silver
Ketch. Highlights have been
provided by At Sea (Expressway and
Canterbury stakes), Ab Initio (TJ
Smith), and Shy Hero (TJ Smith)
and an abundance of lesser-known
money spinners. Around Ab Initio,
Wayne came on to the scene.
''We were in the car after Ab
Initio won at Rosehill. Wayne, he
was good bit younger then, was
crying in the back seat,'' the train-
er recalled. '''What's up, what's up,'
I said. ''Wayne replied he was just
so happy we had won the race, but
it wasn't under his name and I
wanted to share that with him.
Wayneputalotin. . .
''He always looked after Shy
Hero, too. Shy Hero was his horse.
Damien Oliver jumped off him one
morning. Wayne had a good talk to
him and because of this we decided
to change his routine in the week
leading up to the TJ, and Wayne
couldn't share in that win either.''
And now he is doing it with
Thankgodyou'rehere. ''He sugges-
ted a couple of things and was
proven right,'' Webster said. ''If you
don't take notice of a younger brain
you'd be stupid. The older style like
myself go on a bit, whereas the
youngsters have a think about it,
relax, don't get too excited.''
Racing, stewards in particular,
was against partnerships.
''I've worked my arse off and my
son has been with me but if I had
finished the next day, nobody
would give him a horse,'' Webster
told Peter V'landys, the CEO of
Racing NSW. ''My horses will go
somewhere else, but with a part-
nership, as I get older, his contri-
bution will get more exposure. For
instance Gerry [Harvey, a stable
patron] likes Wayne.
''I couldn't really see the finish
of the Hawkesbury Cup but saw
Wayne jumping in the air and I
knew he had won. Great to see I
could do that with my son.''
Max Presnell ........................................ Page 2
Race focus ........................................... Page 3
Harness racing .................................. Page 34
Bloodlines ..................................... Page 34-35
Greyhounds ........................................ Page 35
NSW Provincial (Kembla Grange) .Page 4
Sydney (Rosehill) .......................... Page 5
Melbourne (Moonee Valley) ........ Page 9
Adelaide (Morphettville Parks) .. Page 22
NSW Country (Lismore) .............. Page 25
Perth (Ascot) ............................... Page 26
Queensland (Doomben) .............. Page 28
NSW Country (Wellington) ......... Page 33
Railway track . . .
Patinack Farm pair
Trusting and Gathering
work at Ascot in Perth
Photo: Nic Ellis
(02) 9282 3197
(02) 9282 2039
(02) 9282 2091
(02) 4979 5967
0418 654 698
(02) 4221 2214
(07) 3031 6231
Tony Zuccarini (Editor) (02) 9282 2767
(02) 4221 2643
Day/Night meetings .........Pages 15-21
Win Plenty tomorrow! $55k TAB Quaddie jackpot at Rosehill Gardens!
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