El Issa to ride Amanaat in Weetwood

Ben Currie
Ben Currie has booked Bob El Issa to ride Amanaat in the Weetwood Handicap

A mixture of factors has led trainer Ben Currie to book Sydney jockey Bob El Issa for Amanaat in the Listed Weetwood Handicap at Toowoomba.

Amanaat has won six of his past seven starts and will be having his second open company start after scoring at Doomben two weeks ago.

Apprentice Michael Murphy rode Amanaat in the Doomben win but Currie was keen to get a senior rider for Saturday’s Weetwood (1200m) .

“It ended up being a mixture of factors. Amanaat has only 54 kilos so already it was a bit of a task,” Currie said.

“Jeff Lloyd and Jim Byrne already had rides, Robbie Fradd is going to Sydney and Ron Stewart is suspended.”

“Bobby rode for me when he was based in Brisbane and he is an experienced lightweight jockey. He will get the job done.”

El Issa has been riding mainly in NSW provincial and country areas after overcoming cancer in 2016.

Currie won last year’s Weetwood but had to share victory when Col ‘N’ Lil crossed the line locked with the Michael Nolan-trained Jumbo Prince who runs again this year.