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Wanderson D'Avila in prolific North Queensland form

6 June 2022

Photos: Peter Roy

By Garry Dell

Jockey Wanderson D'Avila concluded a week of winning rides with a quartet at Innisfail on Saturday to give him 10 victories from four meetings.

The 46-year-old D'Avila began a busy week with three winners at Mackay Amateurs Day on May 28, followed by two at Cairns the following day, one at Townsville on Tuesday and then the first four on the Innisfail card.

The Brazilian-born D'Avila came to Australia 12 years ago after having ridden in his home country, America and England.

He spent the first six months of his Australian riding career at Mt Isa, where he formed a formidable combination with a then youthful Jay Morris and they landed the 2010 Cleveland Bay Handicap at Cluden Park with top sprinter Heart.

He then had a stint at Caloundra before moving to North Queensland nine years ago and became the first choice rider for the all-powerful Tom Hedley-Roy Chillemi stable.


"I didn't mind Mt Isa when I first came to Australia but had difficulties with the language so had to let my riding ability do the talking'" D'Avila said. 

"Roy was very good to me and he gave me some good rides on his best horses.

"It really got me going and put my name out there.

"We had a lot of winners in top races in the north and I owe him a lot for my success in Australia.

"I moved away to Ipswich for a while about four years ago and had a few rides in South East Queensland and even ventured down to Sydney for a bit of a look around and then to Caloundra before returning to Tolga two and a half years ago.

"I haven't ridden a metropolitan winner in Australia yet but I'm hoping maybe one of winners on Saturday, the mare Ela Beach, may be the one if I can retain the ride for the big Final of the Battle Of The Bush later this month.

"There's also the northern carnivals coming up in which I love riding at when the best horses and jockeys are here."

D'Avila, who comfortably rides at 54kgs, has bookings already for upcoming Townsville and Mackay meetings.