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Queensland heads into Wednesday’s second leg of the National Apprentice Race Series (NARS) two points clear on the leaderboard after Nathan Fazackerley drew first blood in Tasmania on Saturday.
With six official NARS riders participating in a full field of 12 in Race 6 at Launceston, Fazackerley picked up maximum points when he guided Knitting into fourth place for trainer Edwin Batt.
Fazackerley finished ahead of Victorian rider Mikaela Claridge, who guided Geegees Cash Cow into fifth place and Tasmania’s Teagan Voorham (sixth).
Racing Queensland’s senior apprentice coach, former top jockey Shane Scriven, said it was pleasing that Nathan was able to experience riding interstate.
“He also picked up three other rides for the night and I would like to thank all of the Tasmanian trainers for their support of Nathan and the series,” he said.
“We now look forward to hosting the third leg of this series at Doomben on March 20, where the riders will contest a $45,000 race, which in addition, carries a $5000 bonus for the winning trainer.”
The Queensland representative for next week’s home leg will be announced in the coming days.
Meanwhile, Jackson Murphy has ruled himself out of the final leg at Sandown on April 3 as he continues his comeback from injury.
Scriven said although Jackson was bitterly disappointed to miss out on the opportunity, he wanted to make sure he returns to the saddle in full health.
A replacement will be announced in the coming weeks.
NARS Leaderboard (After Round 1)
Queensland – 7pts
Victoria – 5pts
Tasmania – 3pts
WA – 2pts
SA/NT – 1pt