by Duane Ranger
The youngest ever New South Wales-based driver to notch up 500-career wins might be worth following at Albion Park tonight.
Twenty-one-year-old Chris Geary, who transferred from Tim Butt’s NSW stable to Jack Butler at Logan Village about a month ago, has a full book of drives at Queensland harness racing headquarters.
He will sit behind six Butler trainees, and already has his foot in the door in four other prominent Queensland stables tonight, namely Grant Dixon, Kylie Rasmussen, Brian McCall, and Jonah Hutchinson.
“I’ve driven here plenty of times before. I love it up here. The weather is good and the racing is great.
“I’m not sure how long I’ll be staying this time, but at this stage will probably see out the Winter Carnival. Jack and his staff have been so good to me. It’s heartening to have a full book of drives tonight,” Geary said.
Last October Geary became the youngest driver in his home State to nail 500 winners.
In doing so he became the second youngest driver to achieve the feat in Australia with Queensland’s Pete McMullen beating him by seven months. Geary did it aged 20 and 10 months, while McMullen was 20 years and 3 months old.
Geary has driven Group winners and won some of Australasia’s biggest races since he began driving in November 2013, including the Gold Tiara and the Len Smith Mile.
It took him five drives to land his first winner and that was Western Gailes at Bankstown on December 7, 2013.
“I’ve been fortunate to have been associated with some nice horses like My Sweetchilliphilly, Cruz Bromac, The Black Prince, Miss Streisand and many others,” he said.
“I also want to thank the Queensland owners, horsemen and women who have been so supportive of me,” he added.
The Penrith native said he was looking forward to tonight’s 10-race card, which would be highlighted by the eighth event – the $20,000 Remembering All Promises Open Pace.
His comments for all 10 horses (with fixed odds prices) were:
Race 1: The Jack Butler trained TOMEARA (4) $12: “He has drawn okay and has a bit of speed. Jack’s team is going real well at the moment and this fella has good form. If things go his way he could figure.”
Race 2: The Kylie Rasmussen trained SKYFELLA CAM (6) $12: “The awkward draw is a bit of a worry. He was a good second here two starts back. You always have to respect any runner from Kylie’s barn. Rough chance.”
Race 3: The Jonah Hutchinson trained SON OF MARA (11) $51: “Another one who will need a lot of luck from the draw. If he can cop a break, First Four.”
Race 4: The Jack Butler trained CASINO GRIN (8) $16: “I think he’s one of my better chances tonight. He was wide last start and never really got in, yet he rounded off his race well. Bad draws seems to be the order of the night for me, but he can get some of it because he’s racing well.”
Race 5: The Jack Butler trained MAMMALS MAGIC (6) $12: “She has placed or won in all of her last six starts. Tough draw but each-way.”
Race 6: The Brian McCall trained ROCKNROLL MUSIC (6) $21: “Not easy from the second widest front row draw but First Four if things go his way.
Race 7: The Jack Butler trained GEE UP NEDDY (4) $11: “He has ability and trots well, but he will need to put it together to get some of it tonight. Draw is better than most I’ve got tonight but it’s not ideal. If luck goes his way he can figure.”
Race 8: The Jack Butler trained MANDY KRIDEN (6) $10: “She’s a powerful pacer who can get over the top of them if the race pans out her way. She possesses a lot of speed and is not the worst in this field. She will need a solid pace.”
Race 9: The Grant Dixon trained MISTER COLE (6) $41: “Tough ask from six but you have to respect any runner from Grant’s barn. Here’s got most of the field in this race. A lot of the babies in this race are unknown and will need time. The tote might be the best guide.”
Race 10: The Jack Butler trained ROCK WITH SAM (6) $16: “Jack’s got him low-flying at the moment and even though I can’t see him getting past Colt Thirty One in this he is place-worthy.”