DANI Walker won the 2014 Balnarring Cup, the Holy Grail for non-professional riders, while she was pregnant with her daughter Zoe.
And last Saturday, returning to the saddle for the first time as a mum, she booted home Cinderally, when she came with a withering burst down the outside to tip out the favourite Apache Shadow.
And it was a beaming Mrs Walker who was led back to scale by Clerk of the Course, Andrew Taylor, to share the moment with hubby Mal and one year old baby Zoe.
“Yes, great,” was all Dani could say as she raced off to weigh in after the event, delighted to have brought off an all-female coup in race three; for owner-trainer Kasey Wilson of Pakenham.
It was just one of the highlights on a great day of racing at Woolamai last Saturday to open the local racing season.
Another was the treble in a six-race card ridden by Matthew Corbisiero which included a last-race winner at $17 for the win, Kai Glow.
In the same race, a 6 year old mare by Snitzel, purchased at the National Weanling Sales for $36,000, came third, an indication of how hard it is to crack it for a winner in racing.
Race four on the card had punters scratching their heads for a winner with horses named as diversely as ‘Earn A Quid’, ‘Ya Crackin Jokes’, ‘Nudey Run’ and ‘That Horse There’… yes, no kidding! Apparently the owners have another horse in their stable called ‘This Horse Here’ as well.
Ya Crackin Jokes was the winner and Nudey Run was a scratching!
The weather might have clouded over at times, with the odd spray of rain, but there was a big, happy crowd of revellers in, including the ubiquitous bucks and hens’ parties and a party bus from Melbourne to swell the numbers.
The kids were looked after too with balloon art, face painting and a jumping castle.
It’s another big year for the Woolamai and District Racing Club with meetings on January 2, and 21, February 4 and 25 and finally on Saturday, Match 18.
Race 1 Trophy Race 1008 metres: 1st no. 3 The Flying Doormat (Reece Goodwin) $2F, 2nd no.1 Muss (C Kirkpatrick) and 3rd no. 2 Rich Tycoon (R Douglas).
Race 2 Restricted Trophy Race (2) 1008 metres: 1st no. 2 Classy Crissi (Maxwell Keenan) 2.75F, 2nd no.4 Show’em Jack (C Kirkpatrick), and 3rd no.5 Carbonendi (Toby Lake).
Race 3 Maiden Plate 1008 metres: 1st no.4 Cinderally (Dani Walker) $5.50, 2nd no.1 Apache Shadow (Courtney Pace), and 3rd no.8 Lochend Emmarose (Caitlin King).
Race 4 Maiden Plate 1508 metres: 1st no. 6 Ya Crackin Jokes (Matt Corbisiero) $6, 2nd no. 3 That Horse There (Reece Goodwin), and 3rd no. 4 Three Handles (Sophie Logan).
Race 5 Trophy Race 1508 metres: 1st no. 7 Punton Bernardini (Matt Corbisiero) $3.50F, 2nd no. 3 Jack Hammer (Ms C Pace) and 3rd no. 6 Tearaway Tommy (Ms D Waymouth).
Race 6 Restricted Trophy Race 1608 metres: 1st no. 8 Kai Glow (M Corbisiero) $17, 2nd no. 1 Transfixed (R Douglas) and 3rd no. 6 Snitzilla (R Goodwin).