Punt Drunk: Another week, another jockey sacking

Craig Williams Fired

The racing world never fails to disappoint.

Punt Drunk took aim at the connections of Giga Kick last week to no avail when they sacked Craig Williams in what was one of the dumbest moves in recent history.

Now, a week later, one of Queensland’s best has been given the flick.

The old saying “the game’s the game” may stand true for some, but recently it is just taking the proverbial.

James Orman is desperately unlucky

All eyes were on the Queenslander Antino in The Sofitel at Flemington last Saturday.

Having won eight of his first nine starts, the hope was that the short-priced favourite would just come out and destroy his rivals.

Things did not go to plan.

Having drawn barrier one, James Orman opted to give up the lead after the first 200m and found himself stalking Climbing Star throughout.

That was his only mistake – giving up the lead.

Because in the home straight, once the pace quickened, Climbing Star couldn’t sprint as well as the rest of the field and left Antino and Orman in all sorts of trouble on its heels.

Orman opted for rails run, which was there, but Antino just did not want to take it.

He then had to regain the horse’s composure and look for other gaps, and despite hitting the line better than any of his rivals, the Queenslander finished fourth, beaten under a length.

A true moral beat.

Connections saw enough, though, and booted Queensland’s leading jockey from the Tony Gollan-trained runner, with leading Victorian jockey Blake Shinn set to take the steer for the remainder of this spring carnival.

Giga Kick connections are still sooking

If you didn’t know any better, you would think Craig Williams took Giga Kick on a 42km run around Melbourne.

The connections of star sprinter have made the decision to bypass the Group 2 Premiere Stakes (1100m) and head to The Everest (1200m) with just that one run under his belt in the Group 2 McEwen Stakes (1000m).

Surely the jockey bashing needs to stop?

How about trainer Clayton Douglas?

Why have we not heard from him about Giga Kick’s condition?

Why will he not come out and admit he got it wrong by sending a get-back-and-run-on horse to the Moonee Valley 1000m first-up against genuine speedsters?

Can they not admit they got beaten by a better horse on the day?

Craig Williams admitted he got it wrong; now it’s time for Giga Kick’s connections to do so too.

The Everest is building nicely

Inglis Sprint Overpass
Overpass and Joshua Parr will look to conquer The Everest. (Reg Ryan/Racing Photos)

Speaking of The Everest, the field for the 2023 edition might just be one of the best we have seen in the race.

Sure, Nature Strip being retired is a shame, but we are set to have a genuinely star-studded field of sprinters for the $20 million race on October 14.

Giga Kick, I Wish I Win, Think About It, Private Eye and Sunshine In Paris are all locked in, as is the out-of-form Mazu.

On Thursday, it was announced that the Bjorn Baker-trained Overpass will join the field, looking to add another slot-race victory to his name after defeating Amelia’s Jewel in The Quokka (1200m) earlier this year.

With five more spots available, and Racing NSW hoping to convince Te Akau racing to send Imperatriz to The Everest, it shapes to be a mouth-watering contest that will only help solidify claims that The Everest is quickly becoming Australia’s best horse racing event.

Giddy up!

Punt Drunk

About Punt Drunk

Welcome to Punt Drunk – our weekly column covering all the latest horse racing and punting controversies, dramas and headline news. Have a story or gripe or issue that just grinds your gears? Just hit us up in the comments or contact us page and our jaded, punt hardened Punt Drunk staff will give it the Punt Drunk treatment it deserves. Don’t expect pleasantries or typical racing media fanboy gloss from Punt Drunk – we’re on the punt and we don’t have time to bullshit; the next is about to jump…

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