By Isaac Murphy
Tony Sears Filly Barefoot returned to form winning the QTIS Three-Year-Old’s over 1800m in the process giving promising apprentice Baylee Nothdurft his first Saturday Metropolitan winner.
The young hoop has ridden more than one hundred and thirty winners mainly in the Darling Downs area and it was fitting he teamed with the Toowoomba based Sears to notch his first in town.
Barefoot was coming off an unimpressive outing at the Sunshine Coast, but any trepidations Sears had about her form were cast aside with a glowing assessment from his track work rider midweek.
“Peter Spry told me on Tuesday she was going to win, if there is ever a man to judge a horse it’s him so I came in with a fair bit of confidence,” he said.
“Not much went to plan last time out, the muddling speed never really let her settle, so I wasn’t too worried about her going forward,” Sears said.
“They really set it up for us today when they clapped on the speed, Baylee (Nothdurft) did a great job getting her to relax, he can really ride that boy.”
An in form Nothdurft had been knocking on the door for a Saturday City win after saluting on Devils Marbles for Michael Nolan at Doomben on Wednesday.
A bit of confidence and some tips from a veteran hoop made it a big week for the youngster.
“I’ve got to give a huge thanks to Michael Cahill who gave me plenty of tips on to ride her,” Nothdurft said.
“I was a bit nervous in the run because I knew we were travelling really well and I just wanted to make sure I got her to the outside when it mattered.”
Nothdurft needn’t of worried with a strong gallop setting up the 1.47.71 second win, over a second quicker than the BM80 Handicap over the same distance.
“It panned out pretty well there was a lot of speed on, so I was able to tuck her away and save some petrol,” Nothdurft said.
The apprentice was quick to thank Sears for the ride, hoping to hold the association.
“Tony’s (Sears) been a big supporter of me, he’s got some quality horses in the stable and I’m glad I got a ride on this one, I’ll be even happier If I keep it,” he laughed.