FORMER top Western District jockey Neville 'Nifty' Wilson has been granted a trainer's permit and hopes to have his first runner at Warrnambool on Thursday, August 20.
Wilson, 73, held an assistant trainer's licence to his great mate Geoff Daffy for more than six years until the respected Camperdown trainer passed away suddenly in February.
Wilson received news from Racing Victoria stewards on Wednesday his trainer's licence had been granted.
"I've got mixed feelings about getting my licence," Wilson told The Standard.
"I was just happy working along with my old mate Geoff but after his sudden passing I wanted to stay involved in the racing industry.
"I've been involved in the sport since I was 14 years old so I thought I would apply for my trainer's licence. I'm only going to have one or two horses in work at any time."
Wilson's first runner might be Silkstream next Thursday.
The four-year-old mare, who has had two starts for respected Warrnambool trainer Colin Chandler, will be entered in a maiden over 1200 metres at Warrnambool.
"I've got to thank Colin," the former president of the Victorian Jockeys Association said.
"He's done a lot of work with Silkstream. She's had the two runs for Colin and ran well on each occasion.
"She shows a bit of promise. I just hope I can get the best our of her. A few of my friends are involved in the ownership of Silkstream. It should be an interesting day if she runs at the meeting."
Wilson, who was the first Victorian-based jockey to ride 2000 winners in his career, ended up booting home 2078 winners from more than 20,000 rides before retiring from the saddle in September 2012.