Kyle Wilson-Taylor has won the race for the Brisbane apprentice jockeys title with three weeks still left in the season.
Kyle Wilson-Taylor has claimed early victory in the Brisbane apprentice jockeys premiership and predicted junior riders will have to contend with another formidable apprentice in next season’s title race.
Wilson-Taylor has a 4½-win lead over good mate and apprentice rival Jaden Lloyd in the premiership race but it is all parcelled up with Lloyd to serve a suspension and not riding for the remainder of the season.
Being crowned champion apprentice has been a goal more than two years in the making for Wilson-Taylor.
He was riding in Grafton, in northern NSW, and had several falls when his manager Glen Courtney outlined the ambitious blueprint to move to Queensland with a longer term goal of winning the metropolitan apprentice title.
Wilson-Taylor has ticked that off and says riders in Brisbane will have to contend with an apprentice jockey who is just as formidable next season.
Wilson-Taylor’s partner is fellow apprentice jockey Angela Jones who has set tongues wagging on the provincial scenes with her riding feats.
Jones will kick off riding in the city on a full-time basis next month for top trainer Tony Gollan.
“She has got something that I didn’t have when I came to town – she’s got a very level head,” Wilson-Taylor said.
“I over-complicated things when I first came to the city but she won’t do that.
“We have already seen how good a rider she is – and she has the backing of a great stable already in the Tony Gollan stable.
“Racing is all I talk about at home – I think she wishes I would shut up.
“But they are good conversations, she asks me what I think about various rides and vice versa.
“And when I have a bad day, she is there to pick me up and I think I am the same with her.”
Wilson-Taylor has had an amazing journey from couch surfing as a youngster, after a family breakdown struck, to be Brisbane’s champion apprentice jockey.
While he may yet have a celebratory dinner to toast the feat with his partner, the young jockey isn’t getting ahead of himself.
He has big dreams and realises being recognised as leading apprentice does not guarantee long-term success in the senior riding ranks.
When he outrides his claim, Wilson-Taylor wants to put his head down and work even harder.
“I have still got another full season as an apprentice, but I want to outride my claim,” Wilson-Taylor said.
“I think it’s a huge mistake that a lot of apprentices can make is they have a good apprenticeship and then they think they can put their feet up and think they have worked hard and they need a break.
“But at the end of the day, I think the most crucial time for any apprentice is when they outride their claim.
“I will be working as hard as ever to establish myself in the senior ranks when I get there.
“I am lucky I can ride light and I feel like my riding is always improving.
“I’ve come a long way from when I was a very green kid and had a lot of falls early on.”
Racing is Wilson-Taylor’s life and the young jockey who grew up in Victoria would love to one day ride in Australia’s biggest races just like former Brisbane apprentice prodigies Zac Purton and Michael Rodd have done.
But he wants to establish himself as a senior rider in Brisbane and continue to improve before considering if he wants to give riding interstate a go.
“All I did growing up was dream about riding in Melbourne Cups and Cox Plates and you have to be in Melbourne to do that,” he said.
“But I’m happy to establish myself here and if I’m lucky to find horses good enough to take me there that’s great.
“I will just worry about trying to be as good as I can here.”
Originally published as Kyle Wilson-Taylor to be crowned champion Brisbane apprentice