VETERAN jumper Half Moon Rising created a modern day weight carrying record when he lumped 74.5 kilograms to score a runaway win in the $20,000 W. Miller Steeplechase at Casterton yesterday.
The victory was Half Moon Rising’s 14th jumping win for his trainer Graeme “Joey” Smith and gave champion jockey Steve Pateman his 13th jumps win on the nine-year-old.
Sky Plain, also trained by Smith holds the weight carrying record of 76.5kg, set in 1992 around the picturesque racecourse.
Smith said he may now look at running Half Moon Rising in the $100,000 Crisp Steeplechase at Sandown next Sunday.
“Half Moon Rising has been a great horse for us,” he said.
“He gave a faultless display of jumping today. He’s just an honest horse who gives his all in his races.
“It was a well-judged ride by Steve. He understands the horse 100 per cent.
“I reckon he’s only a length or two behind the top-grade steeplechasers. We’ll see how he pulls up. I think the run today should top him off for the Crisp and then we may look at the Grand National Steeplechase on July 27.”
Meanwhile, Racing Victoria deputy chairman of stewards Rob Montgomery will talk to Exercise Research Australia (ERA) today regarding weight issues which plagued Pateman earlier this year.
ERA has overseen Pateman’s weight since stewards imposed a minimum riding weight of 67kg in April, after he forfeited rides because he could not make the weight.
But Pateman is hoping stewards will lower the weight to 66kg.
The 31-year-old jumps jockey hopes to ride the Kiwi jumper Sea King in the $200,000 Grand National Hurdle next Sunday.
Knocka Norris took out the maiden hurdle on the eight-race program for trainer Eric Musgrove while
Hezza Tidal Wave won the restricted hurdle.
The feature flat race was claimed by the Mitch Freedman-trained Contact.