Payne bounces back with contrasting double triumph
IT was an afternoon of contrasts for talented Australian jockey Paddy Payne yesterday.
After a couple of unlucky placings midweek, Payne landed a welcome double to take his tally for the season to 11 and the victories could not have been more different.
The first success came aboard On The Job (9.6-1) in the Class Four second event, a five-furlong dash, with Payne arriving late to grab a short-head verdict over fellow debutant First Honour.
Payne had to dig deep to lift the three-year-old Australian-bred and trainer David Hill said he was sure to take benefit from the performance.
'He was only 80 per cent fit today and we were hopeful that he'd go well but we weren't sure what he would give when pressured.' As it happened, On The Job found plenty, fighting all the way to the line to reverse the form of a recent grass trial with runner-up First Honour.
'His trial pleased me and I knew that what ever he did this afternoon he would come on for it,' said Hill.
Those are encouraging words and Payne will be keen to get back aboard this son of Demus who should get another chance in Class Four before being promoted.
Payne wrapped up his double in the most dominant fashion aboard the progressive Billion Win (2-1 favourite) for Ivan Allan.
The defending champion trainer is another confirmed fan of the former Melbourne-based pilot and he would have been praising Payne a long way from home in the Class Four, 1,400-metre eighth event.
Payne took the International Sale graduate straight to the front and gave nothing else a chance as they cruised to one of this season's most facile victories.
The official margin was 2.25 lengths but it could have been so much more.
When they turned for home Payne had Billion Win under a stranglehold and, as Douglas Whyte issued his challenge on Deuce Of Hearts, the favourite simply shifted into another gear.
He went to the line hard held from Deuce Of Hearts with outsider Golden Boy filling the tierce spot.
However, there were some anxious moments for Billion Win's supporters when third favourite Happy Moment dislodged jockey Brett Doyle in the stalls and burst through the front, galloping 150 metres down the back straight.
Fortunately, a compliant Happy Moment stopped, had a look around and returned to gates of his own volition where he was given the all-clear to take his place in the field.
When Doyle jumped back in the saddle the crowd let out a relieved cheer as a withdrawal would have eaten considerably into the win return.
Elsewhere, South African Douglas Whyte landed a birthday present when topweight King Of Jewelry (5-1), under a typically heady ride, outgunned his rivals in the Class Three fifth event.