Richly talented young horseman Leonard Cain has landed his first feature.
On Saturday night at Albion Park, the 18 -year-old produced a polished display behind Our Hi Jinx ($10) to land the $20,540 AQWA Constructions Lord Mayors Cup defeating the heavily fancied Glenferrie Hood ($2.80) and Avonnova ($5) in the 2138m feature.
It was great result for trainer Ian Gurney, preparing first and third.
The Lord Mayors Cup was the first open class features during the Racing Queensland summer carnival with the Gr.3 $30,540 AQWA Constructions Be Good Johnny Sprint (Dec.2), $20,540 Christmas Cup (Dec.9) and the Gr.2 $60,540 Egmont Park Stud Queensland Cup (Dec.16) all still to come.
Previous winners of the Lord Mayors Cup includes Alleluia, Field Officer, Destreos, Be Diligent, Tip Your Hat, Western Light and Leftrightout among others.
Champion pacer Blacks A Fake won the event back in 2010.
But the moment belonged to Cain on Saturday night.
The graduate of the Queensland mini-trotting has built a good rapport with the New Zealand bred gelding, winning three races from four drives to date.
“It was a great thrill, he’s a good horse and his record proves that being a former Queensland Pacing Championship winner and he’s still very quick with the right run. He’s not the easiest horse to drive but I enjoy the challenge.” Cain said.
Fresh from his standout rookie year which netted him 55 winners from 535 drives and therefore created a new record by a Queensland driver for most wins in a maiden term.
The previous record belonged to Brittany Graham at 40.
As a result of his excellent opening season, he was recently crowned the co-winner of the Young Achiever of the Year award – Narissa McMullen was the other co-winner.
The award is sponsored by generous harness racing benefactors Kevin and Kay Seymour and the prize is a trip to North America to spend time working and learning under the watchful eye of outstanding horseman and former Australian Ross Croghan in New Jersey next year.
And he continues to improve and work at his chosen craft.
So far this season, Cain has driven 17 winners which includes a triumph in the $15,540 Seymour Rising Stars Championship Final aboard the Peter Greig trained Bodhi Tree on October 21.
The fresh faced youngster will reunite with Our Hi Jinx this weekend in the Be Good Johnny Sprint and looms as a legitimate chance again given his current form.
The Christian Cullen gelding has won 3 and been placed on a further 3 occasions from 10 starts this campaign.
Our Hi Jinx won the Be Good Johnny Sprint back in 2015 before going on to win the Grand Circuit feature – the Gr.1 $200,000 QPC.
The victory behind Our Hi Jinx completed a double for Cain after guiding Western Blaze to victory in the opening race for trainer Jack Butler.
Cain, the son of Errol and Debra Cain currently works for leading horseman Shane Graham.
Chris Barsby | RQ Web News | November 27 | Photo by Dan Costello