The pestering and persistence of jockey Michelle Payne for the ride on her brother Patrick Payne’s stayer Turner Bayou on the weekend was well rewarded as she guided the galloper to the Queensland Cup 2013 win.
Payne had been on her trainer sibling’s back about the mount on the progressive Zabeel four-year-old Turner Bayou for a number of weeks.
Confident the horse had what it took to step up to black type company and the two miles for the first time, Payne badly wanted to partner them in the $150,000 BMag Queensland Cup (3200m).
“I know what a good stayer this horse is and I was at Patrick for weeks and weeks to put me on in this race,” she said.
“It was only in the last week that he gave me the nod for the ride.
“I’ve loved him (Turner Bayou) right from the start.
“When I rode him on debut over 1500m at Ballarat, he got beaten a fair way, but I told Patrick not to worry about it because even then he gave me the impression he was a lovely stayer.
“I won his maiden at Mildura over 1800m and he wasn’t suited at all because he needs further, but it was only his class that got him home.”
Finally booked for the ride the top female hoop proved why she had fought to partner with Turner Bayou guiding them to an all-too-easy three and a half length victory in Saturday’s feature.
Going out a $3 chance after their good second at Sandown over the mile and a half in the mud 10 days earlier, Turner Bayou proved far too good for runner-up Fifth Column ($41) with the Queensland Cup trifecta completed by the Robert Smerdon-trained Verdant ($6) who was five and a half lengths away from the winner.
“This horse and Yosei were my inspirations for returning to riding,” Payne said speaking about her serious fall in May last year which saw her break two vertebrae in her spine.
“I was always going to come back, but he made me rush back a bit quicker because I wanted to be fit enough to ride him in the 3200m Adelaide Cup.
“As it turned out that race came up too quick for him, but I’m really grateful to Patrick for sticking with me and we’ve got a great result today.”
Michael Moroney’s Muirfield was a distant fourth before the $2.60 favourite Ibicenco failed when 11 lengths away fifth in one of the few remaining true 3200m cup races left on the Australian racing program.
“Everything went to plan in the race but he didn’t quicken the way I thought he would in the straight,” Ibicenco’s jockey Brad Rawiller said when trying to explain the below par effort from the top fancy.
Payne admits that the winning ride didn’t go exactly to plan either as Ibicenco’s poor effort made trailing him a non-option.
“My plan was to follow Ibicenco but I ended up behind another horse and I was cursing for the first half of the race,” she said.
“Then I copped a squeeze at the 800-metre mark and he (Turner Bayou) lost balance but fortunately he was able to pick himself up quickly.
“He tracked into the race really nicely and being a genuine stayer when I needed his stamina to kick in it did.”
The Queensland Cup was the final run for Turner Bayou this time in and they will now spend some time in the paddock before returning for a shot at the 2014 Adelaide Cup, also run over the two miles, next March.
“He’s still a big raw horse who is learning what it’s all about but he’s got terrific staying ability,” Patrick Payne said on Saturday when celebrating his second Queensland Cup victory following his win with Kerdem five years ago.
“I was confident he’d be suited today because when the track is wet it becomes more of a staying contest and that’s his go.”
While the Queensland Winter Racing Carnival has come to a close for another year the attention is now turning to the spring majors.
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2013 Queensland Cup Results & Finishing Order
Eagle Farm Race 6 – 06/07/2013
|1||6||TURNER BAYOU (NZ)||Patrick Payne||Ms Michelle Payne||–||7||54kg||$3|
|2||12||FIFTH COLUMN||Gerard Betros||Ryan Wiggins||3.3L||8||54kg||$41|
|3||3||VERDANT (GB)||Robert Smerdon||Larry Cassidy||5.6L||10||54kg||$6|
|4||4||MUIRFIELD (NZ)||Michael Moroney||Eddie Wilkinson||8.1L||5||54kg||$6|
|5||1||IBICENCO (GER)||Peter G Moody||Brad Rawiller||11.1L||4||59kg||$2.60F|
|6||10||CLONMACNOISE (NZ)||Alan L Jones||Glen Killen||19.3L||9||54kg||$51|
|7||5||GOLD CAPE||John Wheeler||Micheal Hellyer||26L||2||54kg||$31|
|8||8||BUFFETT (NZ)||Bruce W Hill||Timothy Bell||28.3L||3||54kg||$26|
|9||13||RUNDLE HEIGHTS||Kelly Purdy||Michael Palmer||36L||6||54kg||$101|
|10||11||MAJESTIC SOUND||David Scanes||Ashley Butler (a)||60.5L||11||54kg||$61|
|11||9||BOREHOLE||David J Lawlor||Andrew Spinks||63L||1||54kg||$71|
|–||7||DODGING EDDIE||Michael Nolan||Ric McMahon||–||0||–||–|
|–||2||PEAL OF BELLS||Gwenda Markwell||Glen Colless||–||0||–||–|