NT trainer Rene Taylor celebrates Tycoons Dior first win

Alice Springs trainer Rene Taylor (right) with her late grandmother Emmie Wehr, who was also a prominent trainer in the Red Centre, during a race meeting at Pioneer Park. Picture: Nikki Westover Photography

It was only her second career win as a trainer, but Rene Taylor couldn’t hide her excitement when Tycoons Dior won her first race at Alice Springs last Saturday.

After nine starts in the Red Centre, the mare finally saluted when Darwin jockey Wayne Davis sealed a narrow win in a 1000m maiden.

In a blanket finish, the six-year-old mare ($4.80) edged out the fast-finishing Quizzle (Jessie Philpot), a $41 outsider with Australian betting sites, from the Ray Voney stable by a half head with Greg Connor’s $12 fancy Artie Star (Dan Morgan) a nose away in third place.

Debuting at Pioneer Park in September 2021, the daughter of Equiano has been a model of consistency and has only missed a place once.

With a record of three seconds and five thirds, a win for Tycoons Dior was inevitable.

“It’s been a long time coming, it was just a huge thrill,” Taylor said.

“She was an unraced five-year-old and came to me through a dear friend of my nana and former trainer Emmie Wehr, who has passed away.

“That was Jimmy Scott, who knew of the horse through his friend Brenda Scarlett who bred the horse.

“She ran a photo finish second to the Gillett’s good horse Bench Press in her first race.

“Paul Denton, who rode her, said, ‘You’ve got a very good horse on hand’.

“She’d hung up really bad on that run, so then we had to barrier trial again to the stewards liking and then she injured herself.

“It wasn’t until April when she raced again.”

That day she finished fourth behind Flying Start, who was named Horse of the Year by the Alice Springs Turf Club for 2022.

After all the trials and tribulations, it finally paid off for Tycoons Dior and Taylor.

“It absolutely did, credit to her and Wayne as well,” she said.

“I had Dash (Paul Denton) on her for a majority of her rides and then he was unavailable and Wayne rode her in a 0-58 (1000m) and she ran a really good second.”

En route to her first win, Tycoons Dior initially refused to load before sitting outside the leader Bear Forever when they jumped and once turning for home the excitement escalated for Taylor.

“I could see once they straightened that a couple on the outside of her had headed her a bit,” she said.

“I could see Wayne ask her for another effort and she kicked, she just never gave up.

“I was certainly screaming the house down to try an encourage her.

“Quizzle, oh my, god – it just leapt out of the ground.

“Tycoons Dior does race well fresh, so we’ll just poke along over the next few months and meetings, and then hopefully we’re in a good position going into Carnival.

“She’s pulled up well, she’s probably in her prime at the moment being a six-year-old.

“You don’t want to count your eggs before they hatch, but we’ll just move along with her and look at where we’re going after her next run which will more than likely be in February.

“She’s shown that she can handle the 1400m – I’m not sure if she’ll go any further, but fresh at the 1000m she was on the money.”

The next race Taylor has identified is a Benchmark 54 over 1100m on February 11.

Meanwhile, Taylor is hoping to make it back to back wins at consecutive meetings when Golden Ripples lines up in a competitive Benchmark 54 over 1100m on Saturday.

The six-year-old mare is backing up after a disappointing sixth over 1100m (0-64) last weekend, but it was her first race after a last start win over 1100m (0-64) in August.

It was Taylor’s first win after debuting as a trainer in June 2020 and it was Golden Ripples’ second career win after prevailing for Naracoorte trainer Sue Murphy in an 1100m Penola maiden in February 2021.

The mare debuted in the Alice in April last year and in eights starts for Taylor the daughter of Golden Lake finished second over 1000m (0-58) last July.

“I was a little disappointed at her last Saturday, she cost herself a little bit on the jump,” Taylor said.

“She always throws her head up and she’s a horse that seems to want to have it her own way, so I put Casey (Hunter) back on her.

“Casey rode her win last year and when she came second.

“The mare’s form is not necessarily appealing, but she’s competitive.

“If she can get the jump without this silly habit of throwing her head up and then find a position she should be there amongst it – although it’s not the easiest of races.”

Freedom Day, City Jet, Harbour Express and Real Devine will be tough, but Golden Ripples was a $6 hope earlier in the week.

Finally, Done Right and Hayden Will Do are the only other horses Taylor have trained in 38 races, but she has picked up a pair of two-year-olds who won’t race until they turn three.

“Obviously you need some sort of success to attract potential owners,” Taylor said.

“The two-year-olds are showing all the right things at the moment.

“I’ve got a handful of new owners who are willing to come in knowing that the horses won’t race until August.”

21/1/23 Alice Springs Race 5 Replay – Tycoon Dior

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Sandra Taylor
Sandra Taylor
1 year ago

Hi David
Thank you for this article on our daughter Rene. She works hard and deserves the recognition, which I might add is difficult given we no longer have a local Alice Springs Newspaper as we used to in The Centralian Advocate. Enjoyed the read. Thank you very much.

Brenda Scarlett
Brenda Scarlett
1 year ago
Reply to  Sandra Taylor

Dear Sandra, It’s people like your lovely daughter that are a credit to the The Racing Industry. We are one big happy family, and we are all so blessed to be involved. Much appreciation to all . Brenda.

Brenda Scarlett
Brenda Scarlett
1 year ago

Great Article. As one of the few small breeders remaining, my gratitude and appreciation go firstly to Benalla outback trainer, Jimmy Scott, for teaming Tycoons Dior and up and coming Alice Springs Trainer Rene Taylor, together. They are a perfect match, and I wish them all the success in the world. My appreciation also goes to Wayne Davis, who rode Dior beautifully. I am so excited and proud to see this wonderful team together. Tycoons Dior dam, Thrillionaire, won eleven races and is a very intelligent and sweet broodmare. She birthed eight foals, three have raced, 2 winners and one placed. The other three are on training spread across three states. Thrillionaire watches over her yearling and her latest foal at home with me here in Western Victoria.

Robert Willshire
Robert Willshire
1 year ago

Rene deserves any success that might come her way. I am not at all surprised she is achieving in the world of racing. She was a high achiever in the Equestrian world. I was lucky enough to take Rene with a group of other riders to the West Coast of SA where she had great results on her Grandmothers horse Sweet Curry Boy. She was the leader of a small, young group of riders who acquitted themselves well, in all fields including showjumping, hacking, novelties etc.

Brenda Scarlett
Brenda Scarlett
1 year ago

Yes Robert, it’s great Rene has all these skills to now adapt the knowledge to being a very good horse trainer. My two fillies are lucky to be in her capable hands. Brenda …