100 season winners for Allen

Hitotsu wins VRC Derby
Hitotsu ridden by John Allen wins the Penfolds Victoria Derby at Flemington Racecourse on October 30, 2021 in Flemington, Australia. (Brett Holburt/Racing Photos)

In-form hoop John Allen notched up 100 season wins with a winning double at Kilmore on Thursday afternoon, capping off a terrific season for the Irishman.

Allen has ridden five Group 1 winners already this season, three of which are thanks to star three-year-old Hitotsu, who was successful in winning the Victoria Derby, Australian Guineas and Australian Derby, while Sierra Sue delivered him success in the Futurity Stakes and State Of Rest gave him a Cox Plate.

Of his 100 season wins, 38 have been at metropolitan meetings, while 63 winners came from the Ciaron Maher & David Eustace stable, proving that they are one of the hottest teams in Australian racing.

“(It is) Always a good milestone to get to,” Allen told Racing.com.

“Obviously they’ve (Maher & Eustace) got a massive team – the biggest in Victoria at the moment – so it’s good to be getting plenty of support from them and many other trainers as well.”

While 100 winners in a season is something some jockeys will only dream of, Allen said that the century of winners hasn’t been the highlight of his season, with that gong going to a very exciting colt.

“I think Hitotsu’s been the highlight of the year,” the jockey said.

“What he’s been able to do between the two Derbies and the Guineas and obviously a great training performance by Ciaron and David. I’m really looking forward to getting on him next season.”

Allen has had great success in Derbies in recent years, with two already this season and three the season before thanks to Explosive Jack, but he looks a huge chance to add another to his 2021/22 season CV in three weeks, when he pairs up with the unbeaten Detonator Jack in the South Australian Derby – a race Allen has won four of the past six editions of.

The Maher & Eustace-trained three-year-old was a strong winner at Sandown on Wednesday (April 20) over 2100m, which saw him rocket to the top of SA Derby markets, now sitting at around $4 with Australian horse betting sites.

“He’s a very nice horse,” Allen said.

“I’ve had good success over there (Adelaide). It was my first Group 1 winner back in 2016 (aboard Howard Be Thy Name).

“He’s definitely the right horse, he’s training well and he hasn’t put a foot wrong so far, so hopefully he can take the next step and deliver the Derby in three weeks’ time.”

Allen added to his tally on Sunday, with a winning double at Ballarat.

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