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Heartfelt first winner of the Darryl Gollan Memorial

CPDJG-171.jpgBy Jordan Gerrans

Paul Reedy’s journey in the horse racing industry came full circle on Friday evening at Clifford Park.

Reedy, the boss of K&R Plumbing Supplies in Queensland, was first introduced to the ownership side of racing by the late Darryl Gollan when he was still a teenager.

All these decades on, the Reedy-part-owned Alert And Ready romped in to take out the first Darryl Gollan Memorial QTIS Two-Year-Old Handicap at Toowoomba in a fitting result.

It was a touching victory for connections and trainer Kevin Kemp, who has been a long-time friend of the Gollan family and held neighbouring stables to their operation for a decade.

It was a two-year-old named Rumbo Rum who first got Reedy involved through the legendary baby trainer, Darryl Gollan, and he has been in racing ever since.

“He was pretty successful; we had some pretty good luck with him.” Reedy said.

“Of course, it is an easy game isn’t it, we get into that horse, the first one I ever had, and he just starts winning straight away (laughs).

“He was an early days two-year-old that raced on for a few years and then we went into another one called Square Bear, we named it after the Bundy Rum, of course.

“He was quite good as a two and three-year-old, as well.

“The next couple we got into after that, we did not have as much luck.”

CPDJG-140.jpgReedy got his taste of winning through Gollan and has now had horses with Kemp for around two decades.

Kemp is a multiple time Weetwood Handicap winner on the Darling Downs but rated Friday night’s almost four length victory in the Darryl Gollan Memorial as a greater career highlight.

“It was just awesome,” Kemp said.

“I worked beside Tony and Darryl for ten years here in Toowoomba before Tony eventually went to Brisbane, who I am still good mates with.

“It was unbelievable for me to win the race, just super.

“I have been close with both of them over the years, I have had a hell of a lot to do with them even before Tony came along.

“It was really special and probably as good as winning a Weetwood.”

IMG-5317.JPGSince Darryl’s passing just over a year ago following a long battle with illness, many within the racing industry have noted how the experienced trainer brought new people into racing, particularly through the Toowoomba business community, who previously was not involved with horses.

“That was the first time I had ever been involved in the real side of racing, outside of just being an interested observer,” Reedy recalled.

“Darryl (pictured) was good at that, bringing new people into syndicates, bringing people into racing that were not in it previously.

“He made them enjoy the experience, it is was fun.

“It has all continued on since I was a teenager and we have continued on with it since and now I am doing some syndicating myself.

“It has really come full circle with a horse like Alert and Ready.”

As well as Reedy in the connections of Alert and Ready is a big team of owners, who Kemp says are a good bunch of people and loyal to his yard.

A sizeable crowd turned out on Friday night for the first Darryl Gollan Memorial Race day at Clifford Park, which the Toowoomba Turf Club is hopeful will become an annual event on the Darling Downs.

Alert and Ready had been knocking on the door for her first career win for some time and the owners were glad to see the bay filly finally get the money in the 1300m event.

“I have known the entire family the whole way through and once they announced this race, I had a plan that we would love to attack that race,” Reedy said.

“We would love to get one across the line first and then we were lucky enough to do it.

“It was touching to win the first Darryl Gollan memorial race and be able to celebrate his life in a good way and remember all the good times.

“It was fitting to be there on the night and then win it with a nice little two-year-old, which Darryl was known for training so well.”

Alert And Ready got home under the guidance of Kemp stable apprentice Montanna Savva, who the veteran trainer believes is growing as a rider every day.

Savva has only been with Kemp for around six weeks.

Alert And Ready is nominated for Saturday at Doomben and is likely to then head towards the Group 3 Ken Russell Memorial Classic (1200m) at the Gold Coast on May 8.

As well as Kemp’s triumph, Toowoomba trainers Lindsay Hatch and Steve Tregea also trained winning doubles on Friday night.

Alert And Ready