History beckons as Bobbing chases double

Bobbing wins the 2019 Provincial Championship Final.
Bobbing will chase a uinque double when he contests the Country Championships Final at Randwick.

More in the mould of family pet than racehorse, Bobbing is in line to achieve a feat that may never be replicated when he tackles the Country Championships Final at Randwick.

Twelve months ago, Bobbing won the Provincial version for trainer Bernie Kelly, who was then based at Hawkesbury.

Kelly and his wife Anne have since relocated to the Hunter Valley, paving the way for Bobbing to qualify for Saturday’s $400,000 Final for country-trained horses.

Whether another horse would be eligible to contest both Finals in the future seems doubtful and should Bobbing win again, he would surely hold a rare record.

Bobbing is a special horse to the Kellys, who bred him and share in his ownership with close friends.

“It’s a little bit more sentimental as far as we’re concerned because we bred the horse, we raised the horse, we put a few friends into it. They become part of the family, like a child so to speak,” Kelly said.

“He has given us a great ride so far and hopefully he continues to do so.”

While Kelly is hoping for the best in the Country Championship Final (1400m), any victory celebrations will be subdued.

Given the suffering the coronavirus pandemic has caused many, and the hardship his new hometown of Scone has been through with the drought, Kelly is keeping horse racing in perspective.

“It is a bit hard to be jubilant about these things when you see what is happening at the moment, people getting pulled off work,” Kelly said.

“A lot more people are doing it tougher than we are at the moment.

“Like everyone else, we don’t know if we’re coming or going. The good thing that has happened to Scone and most parts of NSW is we’ve had some rain.

“The whole community has got more vibe about it, before the rain had come you could see everyone was down on things but it picked up the community.

“Then the coronavirus came along so it has been a double whammy in some respects.”

Koby Jennings will be reunited with Bobbing, having won the Provincial Final on him last year and after successfully having a six-week riding ban halved on appeal.

Usually busy on the provincial and country circuits, he chose to be grouped with metropolitan jockeys when the riders where segregated into zones due to the coronavirus, specifically to enable him to partner Bobbing.

The gelding is his only ride at Randwick.

“He must have a bit of faith in the horse,” Kelly said.

“I hope for his sake he can get rewarded and the horse can pick up some prize money so he can pay his (appeal) lawyer.”