Nash Rawiller Chases Darwin Cup Glory

Sydney premiership winning jockey Nash Rawiller is the latest hoop to confirm he will be heading to Darwin for the $175,000 Darwin Cup.

Rawiller will join fellow metropolitan jockeys Kerrin McEvoy and Steven Arnold as confirmed riders in the Cup.

Rawiller will be aboard the vastly improved Blackbriar who has turned his career around since transferring to Melinda Boothby’s Darwin stables.

Blackbriar has won four races since moving to Darwin in February. That’s not a bad effort for a horse that had only won four races in the previous three years.

The five year old recently finished third in the Alice Springs Cup, which Rawiller said was excellent form heading into a race like the Darwin Cup.

“The Alice Springs Cup is like the Caulfield Cup for the Melbourne Cup, it’s the best guide to the Darwin Cup,” Rawiller said.

“If you go well in the Alice you have a little freshen up and come back for the Darwin Cup.”

Rawiller also said that he was not concerned by the fact that most of Blackbriar’s best form had come over the sprint distances, saying that he believed the horse had matured and would be suited by the step up to 2000m.

“I’ve watched replays of his races in Melbourne when he was running over 1900m and he’s shown enough to be competitive. I think he’s a nice ride.” Rawiller said.

Rawiller also commented on the affection he has for the Darwin Cup carnival, saying he makes an effort to head north every year.

“The cup is a race I really want to win,” he said.

“I’ve been heading up there almost every year for the last six or seven years but have been limited in the rides I could take because of the weights.”

Rawiller will ride at 55kg in the Darwin Cup, which is right on his weight limit.

Two time Darwin Cup runner up Hawks Bay received a kilo penalty for the race and will now be forced to carry 62kg.

Final Field For Darwin Cup 2011

No Last 10 Horse Trainer Jockey Barrier Weight Hcp Rating
1 X804411351 HAWKS BAY Neil Dyer Steven Arnold 0 62kg 106
2 8749146113 PALMYRA BOY Neil Dyer Ms Jan Cameron 0 57.5kg 93
3 X11123X318 BLACKBRIAR Melinda Boothby Nash Rawiller 0 55kg 88
4 76X9519197 NARATEL Phillip Stokes Dom Tourneur 0 53.5kg 85
5 8743515521 SPAKATAK Kevin Lamprecht Carl Spry 0 53.5kg 85
6 0X32175511 THE RUFFIAN Sheila Arnold Kerrin McEvoy 0 53.5kg 85
7 25X9000815 CLUB LIQUID Dick Leech Michael McDuff 0 53kg 84
8 0080X15220 MONTEGO BAY Paula Trenwith Scott Hillebrand 0 53kg 84
9 8545212X64 AGARKAR Michael Hickmott Ms Libby Hopwood (a) 0 53kg 82
10 12111X6516 GENERAL MAZERATTI Jason Manning Ms Vanessa Arnott 0 53kg 80
11 52X0325X33 ROBDON FLYER Ken Rogerson 0 53kg 76
12 687166X459 VERY FAST Julien Welsh 0 53kg 74
13e 132345X532 BOLTON (NZ) Stephen Brown Paul Denton 0 53kg 73
14e 0625614608 LOUKOUMI Lisa Lefoe 0 53kg 73